restricted access Open Letter to the Experimental Film Congress: Let’s Set the Record Straight (Canada, 1989)

If the “Cinema of Transgression” was a postpunk rebellion against the ageing New York avant-garde, the “Let’s Set the Record Straight” manifesto, issued at the International Experimental Film Congress in Toronto in 1989, points to the large schism between the old guard of the avant-garde and the new generation of American and Canadian experimental filmmakers, and the move from high art to pop culture and political commitment. Like “Modern, All Too Modern,” “Let’s Set the Record Straight” dismisses the Visionary Film generation out of hand, claiming the old guard is apolitical, sexist, and ahistorical, and calls for the new generation of avant-garde filmmakers, concerned with both the political and the post-Debordian mediascape, to have their work screened, acknowledged, and debated.