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Art in Cinema: Documents Toward a History of the Film Society

Frank; Art in Cinema Society. Scott; Stauffacher MacDonald

Publication Year: 2006

From 1946 until 1954, the San Francisco-based film society Art in Cinema presented programs of independent film to audiences at the San Francisco Museum of Art and the University of California, Berkeley. Led by filmmaker Frank Stauffacher, Art in Cinema's programs pioneered the promotion of avant-garde cinema in America.

Scott MacDonald's Art in Cinema presents complete programs presented by the legendary society; dozens of previously unavailable letters between Stauffacher, his collaborators, and filmmakers including Maya Deren, Hans Richter, Vincent Minelli, and Man Ray; a reprint of the society's original catalog, which features essays by Henry Miller and others; and a wide range of other remarkable historical documents.

A companion to Cinema 16 (Temple), a documentary history of the first west coast film society, Art in Cinema provides cineastes, students, teachers, and scholars with extensive and fascinating documentation of one of the most important film societies in American history. Together or separately, the books provide an indispensable reference source for the beginning of this country's love affair with independent film.

Published by: Temple University Press


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List of Illustrations

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pp. x-xi

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pp. xii-xii

I AM GRATEFUL to a number of colleagues and organizations for assistance with this project. Most obviously, as is evident on the title page and in the general introduction, Robert Haller’s input was crucial: had he not begun an Art in Cinema project, I could not have continued...

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pp. 1-12

Over the past half-century, no American city has been more consistently identified with alternative cinema than San Francisco and environs. There are a variety of reasons for the Bay Area’s preeminence in the independent media scene. Obviously, a good many filmmakers (and more recently videomakers) have made the Bay Area their home for extended periods: Sidney Peterson, James Broughton, Jordan Belson, Harry Smith...

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The Documents

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pp. 13-290

MacDonald: What possessed your brother to start Art in Cinema? Stauffacher: Frank was always interested in film. He was interested in the arts—writers, poets, painters. And he always studied films. He was interested in British documentary in the 1930s. And he was a Hitchcock fan in those days. Before the war he got a scholarship to study art at the Art Center school in Los Angeles...


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pp. 291-307

E-ISBN-13: 9781592134274

Publication Year: 2006

OCLC Number: 437182567
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