TUESDAY, MAY 9 – 7:30 PM
INTRODUCED BY BASEERA KHAN
MATCH CUTS PRESENTS and Spectacle Theater present a double feature of Isaac Julien’s FRANTZ FANON: BLACK SKIN, WHITE MASK and Ellen Spiro’s DIANA’S HAIR EGO: AIDS INFO UP FRONT, with a special introduction by artist Baseera Khan.
FRANTZ FANON: BLACK SKIN, WHITE MASK
dir. Isaac Julien, 1996.
UK, 52 min.
English and French w/ English subtitles.
FRANTZ FANON: BLACK SKIN, WHITE MASK explores for the first time on film the pre-eminent theorist of the anti-colonial movements of this century. Fanon’s two major works, Black Skin, White Masks and The Wretched of the Earth, were pioneering studies of the psychological impact of racism on both colonized and colonizer. Jean-Paul Sartre recognized Fanon as the figure “through whose voice the Third World finds and speaks for itself.” This innovative film biography restores Fanon to his rightful place at the center of contemporary discussions around post-colonial identity.
Isaac Julien, the celebrated black British director of such provocative films as Looking for Langston and Young Soul Rebels, integrates the facts of Fanon’s brief but remarkably eventful life with his long and tortuous inner journey. Julien elegantly weaves together interviews with family members and friends, documentary footage, readings from Fanon’s work and dramatizations of crucial moments in Fanon’s life. Cultural critics Stuart Hall and Françoise Verges position Fanon’s work in his own time and draw out its implications for our own.
Born in Martinique in 1925, Fanon received a conventional colonial education. When he went to France to fight in the Resistance and train as a psychiatrist, his assimilationist illusions were shattered by the gaze of metropolitan racism. Out of this experience came his first book Black Skin, White Masks (1952) originally titled “An Essay for the Disalienation of Blacks.” Fanon here defined the colonial relationship as the psychological non-recognition of the subjectivity of the colonized.
Soon after taking a position at a psychiatric hospital in Algeria, Fanon became involved in the bitter Algerian civil war, eventually leaving his post to become a full-time militant in the Algerian National Liberation Front (FLN). Out of this struggle, Fanon wrote his most influential book, The Wretched of the Earth, which Stuart Hall describes as the “bible of the decolonization movement.”
Fanon died of leukemia in 1961, just as Algeria was winning its independence. But his seminal texts continue to challenge us to liberate ourselves from all forms of psychological domination.
Text courtesy of California Newsreel.
DIANA’S HAIR EGO: AIDS INFO UP FRONT
dir. Ellen Spiro, 1990.
USA, 29 min.
Recognizing the extreme inadequacy of information on AIDS prevention, cosmetologist DiAna DiAna, with her partner Dr. Bambi Sumpter, took on the task of educating the black community (which makes up the majority of local AIDS cases) in Columbia, South Carolina. This video documents the growth of the South Carolina AIDS Education Network, which originated and operates in DiAna’s Hair Ego, DiAna’s beauty salon. Working in repressive times to teach a sex-positive and compassionate response to the AIDS crisis in the “buckle of the Bible Belt,” the work of the South Carolina AIDS Education Network has met with harsh criticism. Despite political pressure, DiAna and Sumpter refuse to compromise their teachings in order to get state funding. Since 1986 they have been operating solely on the beauty shop’s tips. Their creative strategies and non-judgemental concern offer a model for making a difference.
Text courtesy of Video Data Bank
MATCH CUTS is a weekly podcast centered on video, film and the moving image. Match Cuts Presents is dedicated to presenting de-colonialized cinema, LGBTQI films, Marxist diatribes, video art, dance films, sex films, and activist documentaries with a rotating cast of presenters from all spectrums of the performing and plastic arts and surrounding humanities. Match Cuts is hosted by Nick Faust and Kachine Moore.
BASEERA KHAN is a New York based artist. Her visual and written work performs patterns and repetitions of emigration and exile shaped by economic, social, and political changes throughout the world with special interests in decolonization processes. She recently had a solo exhibition ‘iamuslima’ at Participant Inc. NYC, and exhibited in BRIC Biennial, Brooklyn, NY (2016) at The Weeksville Heritage Center. Her past exhibitions include Subject to Capital, Abrons Art Center, New York (2016), Arrivals, Out to See, New York City (2014), TX*13 Texas Biennial 5th Anniversary Survey Group Exhibition, Texas (2014), Picturing Parallax, San Francisco State University, California (2011), Hindu Kush, and Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco (2009). She was an artist-in-residence at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, Artist Residency, Skowhegan, Maine (2014). She was recently an International Fellow in Israel/Palestine through Apexart, New York (2015). She was also a participating artist in Process Space LMCC (2015). Khan is currently a 2017 Artist in Residence at Abrons Art Center, NYC and part-time faculty at Parsons, The New School for Design. She received her M.F.A. at Cornell University (2012) and B.F.A from the University of North Texas (2005).