January 19, 2006
Gallery HD Documentaries: Marfa Texas & Julie Speed: Queen of her Room
Date: Thursday, January 19th
Synopsis: This pair of documentaries was produced by Austinite Karen Berstein for Voom Networks, the nation’s largest suite of high definition channels. Gallery HD is Voom’s visual arts channel, capturing the passion, madness and struggle to create, exhibited by contemporary artists.
Julie Speed: Queen of her Room, examines one of the nation’s most innovative artists, Julie Speed. Speed’s work brings to mind painters from the fifteenth and sixteenth century Renaissance, but with her unique perspective, she ponders the role of religion, isolation and longing, sexuality, sin and guilt—with a sly, sometimes black, sense of humor and a steadfast refusal to offer the viewer any tidy resolutions.
With interviews from friends and admirers like screenwriter Bill Witliff, singer/songwriter Shawn Colvin, and former Director of the Meadows Art Museum, Ted Pillsbury, Bernstein presents Speed’s work, life in Austin with husband and fine art printer Fran Christina, and some of her favorite things: gardening, found objects, and driving in West Texas. Speed will be in attendance at this screening along with Producer/Director Karen Bernstein.
The second in the HD Gallery series produced by Bernstein will be Marfa, Texas . This film documents the art opening Optimo: Manifestations of Optimism in Counterparty Art at Marfa’s now legendary art space, Ballroom Marfa. Bernstein focuses on several of the show’s artists and their work and gives a sense of why art and Marfa are now synonymous. Also presented is the story of the genesis of The Marfa Ballroom, and the special. magical environment that makes Marfa a mecca for artists.
This month’s screening will be held at the Rice Media Center, and projected in HD. Both Julie Speed and Karen Berstein will be attending the screening and available to the audience during a prefilm reception and for a Q&A afterwards. Another bonus will be a door prize of a signed copy of Julie’s book of art!
About the filmmaker: Karen Bernstein is a documentary producer and director with 20 years of experience producing for venues such as American Masters, Texas Monthly Talks, HBO, The Sundance Channel, and NPR's This American Life. She also has been a prolific independent filmmaker, producing award winning programs such as Are The Kids Alright?, Troop 1500, and Atomic Ed & The Black Hole.
Co-Sponsored by: TBA
Photo of Julie Speed courtesy of Charla Wood Photography