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Editorial. Portrait as an actress, self-portrait as a filmmaker
Gonzalo de Lucas


About the femenine
Maya Deren

About Fuses
Carolee Schneemann

Conversation about Wanda by Barbara Loden
Marguerite Duras and Elia Kazan

About the Film-Diary
Anne-Charlotte Robertson

Nothing to say
Chantal Akerman


About the Women Film Pioneers Project


In this conversation, the author discusses with Sofia Bull and Kate Saccone about the Women Film Pioneer Project, which is edited by Jane Gaines and Monica Dall’Asta and published online by Columbia University’s Center for Digital Research and Scholarship. The conversation starts with general descriptions of the WFPP, that also touch on the internal methodology of the project, and is taken towards more specific discussions on the relations between cinema studies and digital humanities; women’s role and professions in the silent era; and on the importance of rethinking the hegemonic discourse of film history.

Alejandra Rosenberg

Medeas. Interview with María Ruido


Interview with the researcher and director María Ruido, posed a tour of the filmmakers who have marked her career. The mythological figure of Medea stands as spokeswoman of an imaginary's lights and shadows built by women before the camera. Exposed, brave and contradictory women.

Palma Lombardo


Through the Mirror
Florencia Aliberti, Caterina Cuadros and Gala Hernández


Lois Weber: the female thinking in movement


Lois Weber, as an actress and filmmaker, portrayed in her films the tension that, in the beginning of the 20th century, women who wanted to maintain some of the Victorian traditions while listening to the New Woman empowering speeches experimented. Lois Weber was able to illustrate the appearance of a new female psychology by visualizing in a complex and conflicting way the difficulty of becoming a woman in the era of progress. The article, based on the analysis of some of her female characters’ body language, reveals the way in which the filmmaker gave form to the inner thinking of her characters on screen, defending the importance of the (moral) female gaze, realistically –and with an emerging modernity– exploring the construction of a female subjectivity that was pure thinking in movement.

Núria Bou

‘One must at least begin with the body feeling’: Dance as filmmaking in Maya Deren’s choreocinema


For the Ukrainian-American experimental filmmaker Maya Deren (1917-1961) filmmaking was dance. Through her own presence as actor, her technical and mechanistic manipulations of performed movement into dance, and her embodied dance-like engagements with filmic technicity, Deren innovated a radical approach to the making of dance-film, which was heralded in the mid-1940s as ‘a virtually new art of “choreocinema.”’ This essay explores the ways in which Deren’s ‘choreocinema’ derived from her long-held feeling for dance, and argues that her acting roles in Meshes of the Afternoon (1943), At Land (1944) and Ritual in Transfigured Time (1945/46) constitute complex choreographic imbrications of performance, direction, and filmmaking. While Deren’s filmmaking is synonymous with the enmeshment of her ‘self’ within the films themselves, her performances are predicated upon her immersion in dance as a refutation of the personal dimension. Through examination of the impact of Deren’s interest in dance as ritual, collective, and depersonalized expression, this essay argues that Deren’s acting roles exemplify her ambition to utilize dance, created by the manipulations of the filmic instrument, to articulate female subjectivity released from the margins of normative social and cultural codifications. In turn, this essay looks towards the resonance of Deren’s innovations through the work of dance-filmmakers including Shirley Clarke, Amy Greenfield and Sally Potter, proposing that a particular attunement to dance has, for feminist filmmakers, enabled ‘choreocinema’ to evolve in the form of nuanced meditations upon embodied labor, artistic agency, and the ever-motile configuration of female subjectivity.

Elinor Cleghorn

Nothing of the Sort: Barbara Loden’s Wanda (1970)


American Barbara Loden has become a figure of screen myth: actress, model, wife of Elia Kazan, teacher, and writer-director of a sole, remarkable feature film, Wanda (1970). Dead in 1980 at the age of 48, Loden and her film, despite gaining sporadic, passionate attention around the world, largely fell outside of most film histories, even feminist film history. Is this because it is a film about a proletarian character (played by Loden herself) who is passive, alienated, mostly non-resistant to male manipulation and abuse? Wanda raises complex issues of self-portraiture in cinema: Loden both is, and is not, mirrored in her character. Often mistaken for ‘artless’ or purely ‘direct’ filmmaking, this analysis seeks to uncover the rigorous principles of performance, scripting and mise en scène that underpin Wanda and make it such an overwhelming, uncompromising and incomparable monument of cinema.

Cristina Álvarez López and Adrian Martin

The Trouble with Lupino


The only actress to direct herself in a film during the Classical Hollywood era, Ida Lupino was also a television actress and director. The trouble with Lupino, this essay argues, is not that Lupino did too little historically, but that she did too much. Moving across various roles in film and television and, in fact, moving between film and television industries, she became increasingly difficult to categorize. And if Lupino isn’t always legible historically, certainly her work as a television director can’t be easily “read.” Though she directed television between 1956 and 1968, the majority of her directorial work for the small screen was between 1960 and 1964, when she worked on over 40 episodes all told. Thus, finding overt and consistent visual patterns across her work is nearly impossible, given the range of series, styles, genres, and the 14-year period in which she worked in a medium in which not the director but the writer and producer are the primary creative forces. However, one discernible pattern emerges through her work as a television actress: several of her television appearances directly or indirectly remark both on her work as a director of the small and big screens and on her position historically. Through these fictions –whether Lupino was directly “type-cast” or not within them– the pattern that surfaces functions to narrate the end of this actress-director’s career. Taking into account her varied, seemingly “illegible” work, scholars must design other models for the historical and textual analysis of this significant American figure.

Amelie Hastie

Presence (appearance and disappearance) of two Belgian filmmakers


Agnès Varda and Chantal Akerman are two filmmakers that, within film modernity, have invented their own rules and experimented with new ways of representation, without disregarding the fact they are making cinema from their experience as women. Each one in her own way, in her own images and sounds, has introduced her subjectivity and has become physically present through her body and her voice. Akerman burst into cinema in 1968 with Blow Up My Town (Saute ma ville), an explosive short film where she self-represented or maybe self-fictionalised; that was an attempt she continued later on, both by performing in her own films and by being embodied by other actresses, thus turning physically more invisible; meanwhile, in her more intimate, essay-like and even documentary films, her presence sometimes manifested through forms of absence, as it is shown in her last film, No Home Movie. We can also find Varda’s doubles in her last fiction films, whereas in her essay documentaries the filmmaker’s body has become more visible, acknowledging a subjectivity she had previously expressed through her narrative and reflective voice. The culmination of this physical presence is found in The Gleaners and I (Les glaneurs et la glaneuse, 2000), a documentary which links portraits of gleaners from contemporary world with the self-portrait done in the old age, and the autobiographical movie The Beaches of Agnès (Les plages d’Agnès, 2008).

Imma Merino

Identity self-portraits of a filmic gaze. From absence to (multi)presence: Duras,Akerman, Varda


The present article aims to analyze the nature of the filmic self-portraits of three of the greatest directors in francophone cinema: Marguerite Duras, Chantal Akerman and Agnès Varda. They all generate an identity self-portrait that shows the essences of their respective filmic gazes. Three self-portraits that describe a route from absence to (multi)presence, from identity to alterity and intersubjectivity, from fiction to autobiography, from artistic to intimate space, from literary presence to that of visual arts, and which share the same primordial desire: the vindication of their female filmmakers’ status through cinematic reflexion. Marguerite Duras only showed her image in one single work, The Lorry (1977), to then embody, through her voice-off, different female characters who remain absent from the filmic image. A duality-identification is then generated between the filmmaker and the fictional characters, and the latter compose a self-portrait in absence of the director in Le navire Night (1979), Aurélia Steiner (1979), Agatha and the Limitless Readings (1981) and The Atlantic Man (1981). Chantal Akerman, while dividing herself into filmmaker and actress at the beginning of her career, created three works that represent her existential self-portrait: News from Home (1977), Down There (2006) and No Home Movie (2015). Films of a diaristic nature where the self-portrait is constructed through the conflict with maternal alterity and self-identity, and which is embodied by the dialectic presence-absence of Akerman in the film. Finally, Agnès Varda creates a self-portrait of the multipresence born from her interest in alterity, from the portraits of others created in Jane B. for Agnès V. (1988) and Jacquot de Nantes (1991), and which she continues in The Gleaners and I (2000). In The Beaches of Agnès (2008) the meeting between autobiography and art installation enables her to generate multiple self-images, present and past, real and fictional, in order to achieve a collage-puzzle of herself.

Lourdes Monterrubio Ibáñez


Jorge Oter; Santos Zunzunegui (Eds.) José Julián Bakedano: Sin pausa / Jose Julian Bakedano: Etenik gabe
María Soliña Barreiro




Deadline for submissions: October 10th, 2016.

More information HERE.