Since 2007, my work in 16mm film and still photography has focused on the natural and built environment, and the idea of development as it relates to land use. My interest is in examining the cultural biography written on contemporary landscapes by locating historical and personal points of reference. Open Road continues my investigation of the social histories embedded in landscapes.
Open Road is a feature-length, 16mm experimental documentary about urban space designed for movement and storage of private motor vehicles. The film surveys the visual-aural experience of roads, their building and maintenance, and the culture of widespread motor vehicle use. By inverting the notion of roads as a means to a destination, Open Road examines modern roads as places. Places that have a specific function and character in the American urban landscape. The overall structure and pace of the film, unfolds as stationary long takes, or tableau shots, tracking shots from inside moving cars, and several motion controlled, 360-degree panning shots of various urban sites. During select segments of the film, the voice track will comprise excerpts from John Charles Fremont's The Exploring Expedition to the Rocky Mountains, Oregon and California. This expedition report, written in the mid-1840s, functioned as a kind of guide book for emigrant wagon trains moving west, and was the first government report to be widely read by an American public.
The funds raised will help to cover a portion of film laboratory fees, supplies, transportation, and equipment rental. Any funds raised beyond my minimum will help to fund publicity materials and distribution costs for submitting Open Road to festival and venue programmers throughout North America, Europe, Asia and South America.
Open Road will premiere in Portland, Oregon in December 2012, and starting January 2013, will be distributed to festivals and university and media arts organizations with public exhibition programs. As with my previous film Empty Quarter, I will tour North America with Open Road. Given enough success, I will also consider travel in Europe and Asia as well. It has been rewarding for me to find an audience for my films, and to arrange screenings that allows direct engagement with the audience. Open dialogue is critical to my work, and audiences help to bring gravity and dimension to the work at hand by contributing responses and viewpoints outside of my stated intentions, thus helping to enlarge the scope of the work.
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