The 10th Orphan Film Symposium was held at the Packard campus of the Library of Congress, April 6-9, 2016. Organized by Dan Streible (NYU) and Mike Mashon (LOC), it offered another ‘packard’ program of screenings and presentations. The highlights were many, including a live choral accompaniment to Flotte Bursche (1908). As with the last gathering (Amsterdam, 2014), I was struck by the genial atmosphere, the astonishing array of archival and experimental material and insights, the shared thrill of discovery.
My own presentation was a brief update on my leader research, followed by the premiere of Academy/Society/Universal: 3 Handwritten Leader Standards (2016), a direct animation I’ve been working on for two years. I previously reported on the completion and screening of the first section here. The entire film, in three parts, was handwritten in pen and ink on clear 35mm leader and then digitally transferred by Frame Discreet in Toronto. For each section I traced the official head and tail of the standardized leader (Academy, then Society, then Universal); the ‘content’ of each section is the text of the standard itself, written out in full. My collaborator, Jackie Gallant, composed three wonderful pieces of experimental sound to accompany the film.