(In Honor of the 50th Anniversary of Symbiopsychotaxiplasm Take One and the Studio Museum)
William Greaves, 1968, 75 min
In his one-of-a-kind fiction/documentary hybrid Symbiopsychotaxiplasm Take One, director William Greaves presides over a beleaguered film crew in New York’s Central Park, leaving them to try to figure out what kind of movie they’re making. A couple enacts a break-up scenario over and over, a documentary crew films a crew filming the crew, locals wander casually into the frame: the project defies easy description. Yet this wildly innovative sixties counterculture landmark remains one of the most tightly focused and insightful movies ever made about making movies.
The screening will be followed by a talkback session addressing the films formal experimentation and critical political interventions.
Speakers include Louise Greaves, William Greaves’ widow, and the president of William Greaves Productions, David Greaves, his son who helped him edit Symbiopsychotaxiplasm, and visual artist Aisha Cousins.
This Studio Screen event is the third installment of the annual Studio Museum partnership with Maysles Cinema. Now in its second year, this collaborative film series highlights how film and contemporary art practices intersect and address the on- and off-screen legacies of under-represented cultural producers. This year's selection of films explores the boundary between documentary and narrative filmmaking, and is thematically inspired by The Studio Museum in Harlem's exhibition, Fictions—a survey of recent work by nineteen emerging artists working to imagine and reimagine history and identity through visual practice.