Friday, April 27, 2018, 7:30 pm

Chronicles of Inexistent Time: Films of Malena Szlam

Malena Szlam In Person


992 Valencia Street (at 21st Street)

San Francisco, CA 94110

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Admission: $10 General/$5 Cinematheque Members
Advance tickets available here.

Presented in association with Communication and Media Studies Department at Sonoma State University and Los Angeles Film Forum

“Malena Szlam’s films are meticulously assembled using a menagerie of techniques to physically alter the film elements resulting in dreamlike, collaged, flickering images leaving viewers with a sense of wonderment, displacement and an expanded sense of time. Szlam’s careful construction of her works serves to ground and guide viewers on a serene journey through these brief and powerful cinematic experiences.” (Los Angeles Film Forum)

A member of Montréal’s Double Negative Collective (dedicated to the creation of “cinema of the eye, hand and heartbeat”), Chilean filmmaker Malena Szlam works at the intersection of cinema, installation, and performance, creating silently sensual films (to be presented in 16mm, Super-8 and digital video formats) fusing personal revelations of natural visual phenomena and a sensitivity to non-synchronic time with the poetics of the analog cinema apparatus. This very special in-person appearance (part of a rare west coast tour for the artist) will include works screened in 16mm, Super-8mm and digital video formats including works in progress and special sneak-preview works.


Chronogram of Inexistent Time (Cronograma de un tiempo inexistente) Chile, Canada | 35mm to digital | colour | silent | 6:00 min. | 2008
Chronogram… is a photomontage that explores stillness, motion, and memory. Using a 35mm still camera, multiple exposures were composed and edited in-camera, creating frameless sequences of images printed on 35mm filmstrips. When projected, these images become a non-linear, non-synchronized collage. The ephemeral quality of the images—their transparency, layering, and repetition—invites us to reflect on the role memory plays in perception, the ways we mentally reconfigure fragments to construct stability and meaning in an environment of perpetual flux.

Rhythm Trail Chile, Canada | Super 8mm | colour | silent | 10:00 min. | 2010 – 2011
Like notes written in a diary, Rhythm Trail is an open-ended film composed of a series of Super 8mm sketches edited in-camera. These collected notes are traces of moments and places that reflect on the immediacy of sight.

Anagrams of Light (Anagramas de luz) Canada | Super 8mm | colour | silent | 2:45 min. | 2011
Light breaks the darkness in playful rapture—a film dedicated to my dear friend Javiera.

Beneath Your Skin of Deep Hollow (Bajo tu lámina de agujero profundo) Canada | Super 8mm to 16mm | colour | silent | 3:40 min. | 2010
Beneath Your Skin of Deep Hollow translates night and water into arrhythmic movements of light in a fugue of colours. Shifting impressions emerge on the surface of an agitated stillness, while darkness illuminates reflections and sight.

Lunar Almanac Canada | 16mm | colour | silent | 4:00 min. | 2013
“Lunar Almanac initiates a journey through magnetic spheres with its staccato layering of single-frame, long exposures of a multiplied moon. Shot in 16mm Ektachrome and hand processed, the film’s artisanal touches are imbued with nocturnal mystery.” (Andréa Picard, TIFF Wavelengths, 2014)

Lunar Almanac traces the observational points of the lunar cycle in a series of visual notations. Using single-frame and long-exposure photography, the unaltered, in-camera editing accumulates over 4000 layered field views of half-moons, new moons, and full moons. These lunar inscriptions flit across the screen with a frenetic energy, illuminating nocturnal reveries that pull at the tides as much as our dreams.

Morfología de un sueño (Morphology of a Dream) USA, Canada | 16mm | colour | silent | 5:45 min. | 2015
Morphology of a Dream is a visual study of the rhythms of sleep cycles during the phase of rapid eye movement. Filmed in the forest in Colorado, Morfología explores an oneiric world that expresses place and memory in a fleeting succession of colors and sensations hovering between the “real” and abstract worlds.

Download program notes