Oct 19 2015

Vanessa Renwick: Hope and Prey, Oct. 23-Dec. 12

The University Art Gallery presents experimental DIY filmmaker Vanessa Renwick’s three-channel video installation Hope and Prey, on view in the UAG from October 23 through December 12, 2015.

Hope and Prey features stunning wildlife cinematography of animals hunting and being hunted, transformed through black and white high-contrast recomposition. The viewer is placed in a landscape inhabited by predators. As Renwick writes, “In this installation the audience definitely has to keep an eye out for danger.” Hope and Prey has been described in The Brooklyn Rail as “a slow build toward oblivion that summons the awesome grandeur and the cold horror of the wild.” Portland-based Daniel Menche composed the score.

Please join us! Renwick will speak about her work on October 23, at 4:30 p.m. in Convocation Hall. Reception to follow. Free and open to the public.


On November 9, there will be a public screening of Renwick’s film Charismatic Megafauna (2011) in the Student University Theatre at 7:30 p.m., co-sponsored by Art Forum.

Charismatic Megafauna juxtaposes 16mm film footage from Renwick’s own life as a teenager in inner city Chicago living with a wolf dog with video documentation shot by biologists reintroducing wolves into the western USA in the late 90’s. We watch the wolf dog scavenging in the gutters of Chicago, and we watch humans performing the act known perversely as “wildlife management” on wolves. While the footage of captured wolves can be harrowing, the reintroduction program was successful, and some of the offspring of the captured and re-released wolves are those filmed living freely in the wild in Hope and Prey.  Seattle composer/cellist Lori Goldston performs the original score.

V-and-Fox-KPPBased in Portland, Oregon, Vanessa Renwick is founder of the Oregon Department of Kick Ass (www.odoka.org). Described as being “as punk rock as they come,” Renwick began making her low budget DIY films in the early 1980s. Her films have screened nationally and internationally, in the U.S., Australia, Canada, France, Germany, and Japan, and at venues ranging from the Centre Pompidou in Paris, France to The Museum of Jurassic Technology, Los Angeles, CA. Renwick has been honored with several film festival awards, including “The DIY of All-Time Award”, The Judges Award from the Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival from Mike Plante (2013), The Jim Demulling Speak Out Award for Best Social Awareness Documentary at the Humboldt Film Festival (2007), The Judges Award at the Northwest Film and Video Festival from Michael Almereyda (2005), and The Gus Van Sant Award for Best Experimental Film at the Ann Arbor Film Festival (2005). Her work has been the subject of career retrospectives in New York in 2011 at UnionDocs and Anthology Film Archives, and Raw, Raucous and Sublime: 30 Years Of Vanessa Renwick in Portland, Oregon in 2013. Renwick’s visit to Sewanee is part of her NSEW Film Tour: The West Heads East!

Sewanee’s University Art Gallery is located on Georgia Avenue on the campus of the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee.  The gallery is free, accessible, and open to the public. Hours are 10 – 5 Tuesday through Friday and 12 – 4 on Saturday and Sunday.  Please call (931) 598-1223 for more information, or follow us on Facebook!

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