California: Canyon Cinema, 1966-1980. Archive of 66 issues of "Canyon Cinemanews," the newsletter printed by film collective and distributor Canyon Cinema, with issues variously published between 1966 and 1980. Most of the issues bear the address labels (both New York and Ohio) of experimental filmmaker and video artist Jud Yalkut. Issues of "Cinemanews" appear to be scarce or more so, and assembling a collection of this size, including a number of sequential runs, nearly impossible.
Begun in 1962, "Canyon Cinemanews" sought to highlight information about films and filmmakers not generally available to the public in a democratic fashion, encouraging contributions from anyone interested in cinema, and, unlike other periodicals chronicling independent film, without an overarching critical perspective, other than a focus on experimental over mainstream film, and a preference for new or newly available films.
Each issue presents a detailed picture of what was happening in American underground and avant garde film at the time of publication, including lists of upcoming film festivals, often with contact information for entries, schedules of screenings and exhibitions from around the country, lists of distributors interested in acquiring short films, catalogs of films available for exhibition, not only from Canyon Cinema, but other distributors and even individual filmmakers, and announcements by individual filmmakers detailing information about new and in-progress films.
In addition to providing a researchable catalog of dates and locations regarding the creation and exhibition of underground and independent film during one of it's most fertile periods, issues of "Canyon Cinemanews" also give detailed looks into the concerns, both practical and theoretical, of filmmakers at the time. These include both original and reprinted articles about, essays by, and interviews with various filmmakers, with writings by influential filmmakers such as Stan Brakhage, Jonas Mekas, Bruce Connor, Hollis Frampton, and Paul Sharits appearing in issues contained in the archive. Additionally, issues contained letters from filmmakers, often responding to articles or previous letters, creating an open and revealing dialogue among members of the avant garde film community.
Finally, issues in the archive contain numerous reproductions of photographs, including film stills and on the set photographs, of films and works-in-progress, as well as candid images of filmmakers through the their occasional "Filmmakers Portrait Series." Production stills from experimental films are generally rare, and the archive provides a detailed look into films, some of which might be difficult or impossible to view today. Issues often contained original collages and other artwork, often by contributors, and both photographs and artwork were used as cover design on issues. Notable art contributions in the archive include ones from Bruce Connor, as well as a comic by Art Spiegelman, though we are unable to determine if it is original to "Canyon Cinemanews" or a reprint.
Overall, a highly detailed primary source for experimental film production and distribution during the heyday of avant garde cinema. For more details, please inquire.
Issued generally 8.5 x 11 inches (22 x 28 cm), with issues from 1969-1972 sized 6.25 x 9.5 inches (16 x 24 cm), and the occasional odd sized issue throughout. Printed on newsprint. Generally Near Fine.