Rarely seen works by women run gamut of interests


"Women in Film: Pioneers and Premieres," a series featuring rarely seen works by and about women filmmakers, gets under way tonight at the Baltimore Museum of Art.

Sponsored by the Baltimore Film Forum, the series opens with "Broken Meat," a new film by Pola Rapaport, documenting the life and poetry of nihilist writer Alan Granville.

Julia Pelosi, the series' co-director, said "Broken Meat" is significant because it shows what independent women filmmakers are doing today.

But the reach of the series goes back to 1912. The next-to-last screening, on Aug. 1, is "The Girl in the Armchair," by Alice Guy-Blance, believed to be the world's first woman director.

Ms. Pelosi said the films are not specifically for women nor are they considered feminist works.

"It's a very diverse series," she said, "We wanted to reach a wide range of audience. . . . People will be surprised women were doing groundbreaking work in the film industry."

Set for July 19 is "Animation Pioneers 1933-1969," a collection of short films by vanguard women animators, such as Mary Ellen Bute, who was the first person to ever use electronically generated imagery in film, and Claire Parker, whose "Night on Bald Mountain" uses an animation technique which gives a three-dimensional effect.

Among other works scheduled is Ann Hui's "Song of the Exile," tTC on Aug. 2. Winner of the Tawainese Oscar for best foreign film, it tells a semi-autobiographical story of an estranged mother and daughter who come to understand each other's isolation and alienation when they return to the mother's home in Japan.

Women in Film

(All films begin at 8 p.m. at the Baltimore Museum of Art. Admission is $4 for BFF/BMA members, senior citizens and students, and $5 for the general public. For information call 889-1993.)

Today: "Broken Meat," 1991; documentary of the life of nihilist poet Alan Granville. "Sink or Swim," 1991; personal chronicle of director Su Friedrich's stormy relationship with her father -- documented through home movies and archival footage of the era.

Tomorrow: "The Bigamist," 1953; Ida Lupino's interpretation of the age-old tale of a traveling salesman with two wives in different cities.

July 18: "Maedchen in Uniform," 1931; a young girl desires her female teacher at an oppressive boarding school.

July 19: Animation Pioneers, 1933-1969.

July 20: "Muriel," 1963; Alain Resnais' tribute to French actress Delphine Seyrig.

July 25: Three short films by Jane Campion -- "A Girl's Own Story," "Passionless Moments" and "Peel." Also: "Night Cries," 1990; a middle-aged aboriginal woman nurses her adoptive white Australian mother in her final days. "Coffee Colored Children," 1988; A young black woman's memories of growing up in an all-white neighborhood. "Prowling by Night," 1990; Animated film about a stripper and a prostitute who organize their own "safe sex" awareness campaign.

July 26: "Privilege," 1990; subversive film about the largely repressed subject of menopause.

Aug. 1: "From the Pole to the Equator," 1987; focuses on documentary filmmaking pioneer Luca Comerin. "The Girl in the Armchair," 1912; rare opportunity to see work by the world's first female director, Alice Guy-Blanche.

Aug. 2: "Song of the Exile," 1990; an estranged mother and daughter come to understand each other when they return to the mother's home in Japan.

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