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'Concluding Comments' in 'From Home Movies to Homs: The Past and Present of Amateur Media'

  • Birkbeck Cinema 43 Gordon Square London WC1H 0PD UK (map)

From Home Movies to Homs: The Past & Present of Amateur Media is a 3-part series of events that will bring together anthropologists, artists, film and media scholars, and researchers to trace the historical trajectory of the amateur film, and to explore its current status. Amateur film now saturates online media discourse, and the moving image is a medium of choice for social communication, personal memory, and documentary record. Diffuse mobile communication networks and new film technologies, in particular the camera phone, are reshaping the formal language of the moving image and refashioning the representation, mediation, even construction of the self. Every camera phone owner is now a potential film-maker, frontline reporter, witness and surveillance node, and privately made film now has the power to shape public understanding of events on an unprecedented scale. Through screenings, presentations and open discussion, the sessions seek to outline the transformation of the amateur film from a private pastime to a key component of social media communication, news content and political action. The workshops are led by Noah Angell, Francis Gooding, and Lee Grieveson, but will include contributions from other scholars, artists, and media makers; they will feature extracts from various collections as well as from the film Lux Imperium, currently being made by Angell and Gooding.