Thursday, November 16, 1995

Media Fantasies and Realities

Films by Laura Poitras & David and Judith MacDougall

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

Tonight’s films explore the impact of media representations on how we understand ourselves and the world(s) we inhabit. Exact Fantasy: a film about media correspondence and bringing the stars down to earth (1995) by Laura Poitras (former Programming Assistant and Technical Coordinator at the Cinematheque) is based on fan letters written to different public personalities. “In response I’ve constructed a series of tableaux that examine how we as viewers forge identifications, internalize and externalize our relationships to media representation. The concrete and ideological sites considered include: suburbia, ‘home,’ family portraits, storytelling, dreams, talk-radio, spectatorship, food and others.” (LP) Photo Wallahs (1992) is David and Judith MacDougalls’ ethnographic study of the representational limits and material ramifications of portrait photography within India.