Strange Culture

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The Science of Collaboration: Lynn Hershman Leeson with Tilda Swinton

Ethics, science, history, DNA, gender fluidity, sexual self-determination, and feminism are themes that run throughout three striking collaborations between the artist Lynn Hershman Leeson and the Academy-Award winning actor Tilda Swinton. These three films, presented in new DCP adaptations, highlight a deep investigation of technology and its implications. The series will conclude with Hershman participating in a Skype discussion with the audience.

Hershman, whose new exhibition Twisted opens at the New Museum in New York in late June, has been working for over fifty years on projects that highlight new technologies and their relationship to empowerment. Of particular importance to her are advancements in artificial intelligence, avatars, and DNA.

Programming support provided by Marcus Hu at Strand Releasing and Dave Filipi at the Wexner Center for the Arts.

Strange Culture
Directed by Lynn Hershman Leeson

Saturday, July 24, 1 pm

$12 / $8 Speed members

“Somewhere between documentary and dramatization, fact and impression, Strange Culture molds one man’s tragedy into an engrossing narrative experiment.”—Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times

The surreal nightmare of internationally-acclaimed artist and professor Steve Kurtz began when his wife Hope died in her sleep of heart failure. Police arrived, became suspicious of Kurtz’s art, and called the FBI. Kurtz had been a member of Critical Art Ensemble and was working on a an art piece about genetic food engineering incorporating harmless bacteria. Within hours the artist was detained as a suspected “bioterrorist” as dozens of agents in hazmat suits sifted through his work and impounded his computers, manuscripts, books, his cat, and even his wife’s body.

Tilda Swinton, Peter Coyote, and Thomas Jay Ryan fluctuate between their roles as commentators and interpreters of the legally touchy subject of Kurtz’s case as they deconstruct and act out his tense story. 2007, U.S., DCP, 75 minutes. Recommended for 16+

See also: Conceiving Ada and Teknolust