Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Poem Posters, 1967. 16mm, 24 mins
Sleep in a Nest of Flames, 2000, video, 120 mins
Ford's first film Poem Posters (1967) centers around the opening of his large-scale graphic work at the Cordier & Ekstrom Gallery in New York in 1965. The film documents the full scope of the exhibition, from installation and deinstallation to the myriad personalities that attended the opening. The work was filmed collaboratively, including camerawork by Marie Menken, Willard Maas, Charles Boultenhouse, Gregory Markopoulos, Robert Whitman, Andy Warhol, Buddy Wirtschafter and Stan Vanderbeek, and features many luminaries of the time, such as Andy Warhol, Edie Sedgewick, Jonas Mekas, William Burroughs, Claes Oldenberg and Jayne Mansfield.
Sleep in a Nest of Flames, a feature documentary directed and produced by James Dowell and John Kolomvakis, offers a view of the 20th century art and literary world as seen through the eyes of Charles Henri Ford. The film charts the life of Ford from his days as a young bohemian poet in Paris, through his founding of View magazine – an extremely influential conduit through which expatriate European artists and writers, especially the Surrealists, would find an American audience – and beyond. Ford is presented in a remarkably candid conversation with Allen Ginsberg on death, aging and sex, and is further illuminated through a prose portrait written by William Burroughs as well as footage from a screen test by Andy Warhol. Sleep in a Nest of Flames also contains excerpts from Ford's extremely rare film Johnny Minotaur (1971), which was shot in Crete and is a retelling of the Minotaur myth in modern times. Interviews with Paul Bowles, Ned Rorem, Paul Morissey, Edmund White, Philip Johnson, Dorothea Tanning and Ford himself are also featured.
For more information about Sleep in a Nest of Flames, please visit: http://www.sleepinanestofflames.com/