Skip to main content

Tweet tweet tweet, or as an NZer might say Tui tui tui

OK, I'm sold. Twitter's got my big gold star, because it's giving me more than enough useful info to make it worthwhile.

A little while ago I met Grietje Keller through Twitter, and admired the visual images in her blog but couldn't read it because the words are written in Dutch. Grietje referred me on to a Netherlands International Women's Centre and Archive with a site in English, a wonderful place. Then Grietje sent out a tweet about a US exhibition, of new feminist videos, called Reflections on the Electric Mirror: New Feminist Video, at the Brooklyn Museum in New York (May 1, 2009–January 10, 2010—Elizabeth A. Sackler Center for Feminist Art, 4th Floor— with an 'interesting' New York Times review and a New York Magazine article about one of the artists, Kate Gilmore.)

Jen DeNike (American, b. 1971). Still from Happy Endings, 2006. Video, color, sound, 1 min. 5 sec. Courtesy of the artist and Smith-Stewart, New York

This is the image that appealed to me most, because it made me curious about the rest of the story. (I have a mate who needs to know the ending before she starts a script. I don't but I always hope the ending will be happy.) 

For a while now, I've been ambivalent about calling myself a feminist. 'Feminism' had become, for me, a meaningless term and a source of irritation as I read bits of poststructuralist feminist theory and psychoanalytic theory, both a long way from my experiences as a woman and a scriptwriter and not very useful to me. 

But, when I followed the tweet string (the 'stweet'?) from Grietje, about the exhibition, I found another interesting feminist activist I'd never have found in any other way, MadamaAmbi. And felt delighted to know about new feminist videos. And amazed that they exist, named as feminist. Will these artists, born between 1968 and 1975, make features? Do they already? This show inspires me to come out as a feminist again, because it's a great shorthand for connecting with women filmmakers in the rest of the world.

And then, when looking on YouTube for one of the new feminist videos to share, I found this instead. It's for Erica, Development's producer—especially—and for the students who're using this blog as a resource.

Video and (edited) text below produced by the Brooklyn Museum. 
Korean-born, New York City based artist Sun K. Kwak is shown creating a site-specific work composed of approximately three miles of black masking tape in the fifth-floor Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Gallery. The mural-like piece is affixed to the walls and pillars until July.

The exhibition's title,
Enfolding 280 Hours, references the number of hours the artist estimated it would take her and her assistants to install the piece in the gallery. Work on the installation began in early February, and Museum visitors were able to view the work in progress. At the end of the Brooklyn presentation and after photographic documentation, the masking tape will be peeled off the columns and walls and discarded.

Drawing with masking tape has become her signature form of expression. Kwak continues to challenge perceptions of familiar surroundings with this technique, which for her is both meditative and performative.
And tui, tui, tui? In Maori—te reo—with long vowels, it's the name of a bird, native to New Zealand, that sometimes imitates other birds. You can hear its call on this site, for White Heron Tours, and at our place, most days. 

Here's a pic of a tui, on harakeke/flax plants, like the ones in our garden. 

With short vowels, tui means to sew, or thread, and that's how I think of Twitter now, as I am threaded into a network that includes new feminist videos from New York. 

And then there's Tui beer, and the Tui beer billboards, but they're another story-- 


Popular posts from this blog

#Cannes2017 Excludes #WomeninFilm Who Bring Their Children

Palestinian filmmaker Annemarie Jacir’s track record is pretty impressive.

She has written, directed and produced over sixteen films. One of Filmmaker’s 25 New Faces of Independent Cinema and Variety’s Arab New Wave, two of her films have premiered as Official Selections in Cannes, one in Venice and one in Berlin.

Annemarie’s short film like twenty impossibles (2003) was the first Arab short film in history to be an official selection of the Cannes Film Festival and continued to break ground when it went on to be a finalist for the Academy Awards.

Her second work to debut in Cannes, the critically acclaimed Salt of this Sea (2008), went on to win the FIPRESCI Critics Award, and garnered fourteen other international awards including Best Film in Milan. It was the first feature film directed by a Palestinian woman and Palestine’s 2008 Oscar Entry for Foreign Language Film.

Her latest film When I Saw You won Best Asian Film at the Berlinale , Best Arab Film in Abu Dhabi and Best Film in…

'Water Protectors', by Leana Hosea

Leana Hosea's Water Protectors isabout ordinary women in Flint, at Standing Rock and on the Navajo reservation who have had their water poisoned and are at the forefront in the movement for clean water.

Water is a big issue in Aotearoa New Zealand, too– the degradation of our waterways; drinking water contamination; the offshore sale of our pure water; the debate about Maori sovereignty over water, under Te Tiriti o Waitangi/ the Treaty of Waitangi, signed in 1840.  Partly because this has raised my awareness about the significance of access to water, my heart is absolutely with the women in Leana's work. And with Leana, editing through the night as I write this.

Leana is a reporter/producer for BBC's World Service Radio and has held many other roles within the BBC. As a highly experienced multimedia journalist she's originated ideas, fixed stories, written scripts, filmed and edited them.

She was a shoot/edit/reporter/producer for the BBC in Egypt during the revoluti…

Safety in Paradise?

Children play in safety on the beach beyond my window. Some aren't safe at home, but they do not die in rocket attacks. Along our promenade, this year’s most sustained sirens wailed from motorbike cavalcades, as they escorted royalty to and from the airport. At school, our children may arrive hungry. But they're safe from abduction. The closest I’ve ever been to a war is my parents' silence about 'their' war, refuge women's stories about men returned from wars and Bruce Cunningham’s stories, after I met him selling Anzac poppies. (He was a Lancaster pilot in World War II and then a prisoner-of-war and I’m making a short doco about him.)

Yes, in many ways Wellington, New Zealand is paradise and I’m blessed to live here and to benefit from love and generosity from women and men, my beautiful sons now among those men. But in an interview with Matthew Hammett Knott earlier this year, I found myself saying–
We have to deal with serial violation, direct and subtle, on…