When I asked him about Wavelength he claimed he didn’t remember even writing 
such a list. I don’t know which issue of Film Comment it was in, and a search 
of their back issues yields no results. Maybe Mike knows. I was often struck by 
the ambiguity of George’s comments, not sure if he was praising or dismissing. 
That was intentional no doubt.

From: Steve Polta 
Sent: Sunday, March 04, 2012 11:08 AM
To: Experimental Film Discussion List 
Subject: Re: [Frameworks] Kuchar on the Oscars

      Well it certainly would have been interesting to hear George Kuchar's 
take on WAVELENGTH. In my experience he always had these funny contrarian takes 
on "avant-garde" films. I never sat down and had discussions with him about 
this but he would often throw out these one-liners that were hilarious. For 
example, about Rose Lowder's "Bouquet" films, "Oh. Really nice color in those 
movies." About a Nathaniel Dorsky film with lots of very dark shots, "I'll have 
to bring my night vision goggles next time." About Jeffrey Skoller's "The 
Malady of Death" (relayed by Skoller): "Whatever it is you did, Jeff, it 
couldn't have been that bad." Say these lines to yourself in your best G. 
Kuchar voice and you'll see what I'm talking.

      No doubt that George knew this stuff as well as anyone. But it is really 
his irreverence and his refusal to take anything in life too seriously that I 
find to be the most inspiring about this amazing man...

      Steve Polta



      --- On Sun, 3/4/12, gregg biermann <mubba...@optonline.net> wrote:


        From: gregg biermann <mubba...@optonline.net>
        Subject: Re: [Frameworks] Kuchar on the Oscars
        To: "Gene Youngblood" <ato...@comcast.net>, "Experimental Film 
Discussion List" <frameworks@jonasmekasfilms.com>
        Date: Sunday, March 4, 2012, 5:28 AM


        Yes, Yes. That was it. Thanks Gene.

        On 3/3/2012 3:06 PM, Gene Youngblood wrote: 
          Gregg, the diary you’re thinking of is “Low Light Life” (1988). 
George walks into a room at SFAI where Ken Jacobs is conducting a seminar, 
looking for food. Ken is extremely rude to George, insulting him in front of 
the students, and George walks out. It’s an embarrassing scene, not unusual for 
Ken, but it’s nevertheless interesting since it was at Ken’s loft in NYC that 
the Kuchar brothers first showed their films to the New York underground crowd. 
Yes, George loved the films he caricatured, and his stance is never 
condescending (the same cannot be said for his pal John Waters, by way of 
comparison). George’s knowledge of Hollywood film history was amazing, and his 
film and soundtrack collections were legendary, but he loved all kinds of 
movies. A few years ago Film Comment asked some well known filmmakers to list 
their top ten favorite movies. On George’s list were titles you would expect, 
but he also included “Wavelength” and Antonioni’s “Eclipse.”

          From: gregg biermann 
          Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2012 8:32 AM
          To: Experimental Film Discussion List 
          Subject: Re: [Frameworks] Kuchar on the Oscars

          The other thing here is that George's position on the mainstream 
commercial cinema was not purely oppositional -- that there is also some sense 
of homage to it in his work.  You could even argue that he was alienated to 
some degree when it came to the avant-garde film community -- even as it 
embraced him. I remember in one of his diary pieces he documents a little 
lecture by Ken Jacobs at SFAI that he attended and he ends up walking out with 
Ken yelling after him "George, Come back here!"  Then he ends up at some party 
in Hollywood sitting on a couch with Nicolas Cage (or some star like that)  and 
he ends up feeling uncomfortably out of place there as well. Cannot remember 
the title -- sometime around 1991.
          G


          On 2/29/2012 8:43 AM, 
wlmailhtml:/mc/compose?to=sc...@financialcleansing.com wrote: 
            Sorry, Fred, here I disagree with you.


            I'm sure the Hollywood folks could have added many other people 
(many of them worthy) to the list of those recognized in that memorial moment, 
too. But that three of those recognized--George Kuchar, Tim Hetherington, and 
Ricky Leacock--are makers who worked outside Hollywood, as independents, is 
certainly cause for celebration. It means that, in a however limited way, 
independent filmmakers are being recognized more broadly, as they so rightly 
deserve. That Saint Mark Toscano, working at the Academy, has seen to the 
preservation not only of Brakhage's films but Robert Nelson's, and the work of 
so many other independents is part of that same recognition.

            Like it or not, the Academy is one of few organizations devoted to 
cinema that has the clout to provide broad recognition, and I was thrilled to 
see their images on my TV screen on primetime Sunday night. Kudos to the 
Academy for recognizing Kuchar, Hetherington, and Leacock.


            Scott

              -------- Original Message --------
              Subject: Re: [Frameworks] Kuchar on the Oscars
              From: "Fred Camper" 
<wlmailhtml:/mc/compose?to=f...@fredcamper.com>
              Date: Tue, February 28, 2012 7:44 pm
              To: "Experimental Film Discussion List"
              <wlmailhtml:/mc/compose?to=frameworks@jonasmekasfilms.com>

              > Yes ­ Owen Land, Ricky Leacock, and Jordan Belson as well.

              Oh, why not Hollis Frampton, and Stan Brakhage, and Gregory J.
              Markopoulos? Or Oscars to Ernie Gehr and Bruce Baillie, who are 
among the
              living?

              Or, one might ask, how likely is any of that?

              In all seriousness, am I the only one who finds the many posts in 
this
              thread a little bizarre?

              I thought it was nice when Brakhage was briefly acknowlwedged in 
the Oscar
              montage, and it's nice when other experimental filmmakers are 
acknowledged
              too. But when we start talking about awards, have we forgotten 
what the
              Oscars are, and what values they represent, and how different the 
values
              of avant-garde film are? Why should we expect, or even want, more 
than a
              passing nod from the Academy as it is currently constituted? It's 
really
              great that the money from the Oscar-cast goes to film 
preservation,
              including of avant-garde work. Is there any reason to expect more?

              Fred Camper
              Chicago

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