Voice In Moving Image Film lecture series, Leila Weefur+ Add to calendar
Wed, Oct 26 2022, 4PM - 7PM
Timken Hall | 1111 8TH STREET, SAN FRANCISCO,, CA, 94107 View map
Part of event series: Voices in Moving Image Film Lecture Series
Join us for a lecture with Artists and filmmaker Leila Weefur, Wednesday, October 26th , 4-7pm at Timken Hall
Weefur’s body of work explores the eco-geography of the plant and insect indelibly linked to Black life. The short films will be presented consecutively, tracing the line of research and symbolisms hidden in the narratives which connect each of the works. This is a reflection of their work with sensorial memory, performance, and systems of belonging.
Leila Weefur (He/They/She) is an artist, writer, and curator based in Oakland, CA. Through video and installation, their interdisciplinary practice examines the performativity intrinsic to systems of belonging. The work brings together concepts of sensorial memory, abject Blackness, hyper surveillance, and the erotic. Weefur is a recipient of the Walter & Elise Haas Creative Work Fund and the MSP California Black Voices Project.
Weefur has worked with local and national institutions including CCA’s Wattis Institute, McEvoy Foundation, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, San Francisco Art Institute, Museum of the African Diaspora, The Kitchen, and Smack Mellon. Weefur’s writing has been published in SEEN by BlackStar Productions, Sming Sming Books, Baest Journal, and more.
Weefur is a lecturer at Stanford University and a member of The Black Aesthetic.
BLACKBERRY PASTORALE: SYMPHONY NO. 1, deconstructs the Black Femme figure and the colloquial
Black phrase “The blacker the berry, the sweeter the juice.” The video constructs a cinematic narrative through
the landscape of the blackberry fruit, positing the Blackberry as a figure with a distinct racialized function. The
accompanying letterpress prints and shirts utilize the pulp of the blackberry as ink, resembling bodily residue or
evidence of a violent act. Referencing Yusef Komunyakaa’s 1992 poem “Blackberries” and Wallace Thurman’s
1929 novel “The Blacker The Berry,” the installation explores the kindred history of Blackberries with Black
bodies and the contradictions of beauty, shame, admiration, and contempt. The sound component, Fantasie
Negre, is a composition by Florence Beatrice Price, the first Black woman to be recognized as a symphonic
composer. This layered orchestral piano provides the video with a texture rich with an Antebellum-like history
and a queasy contemplation to match the choreographed destruction of the Blackberry fruit.
Between Beauty & Horror is a video installation exploring the symbiotic nature of beauty and horror. The
installation is a diptych, divided into two long corridors on opposite sides of the gallery, separated by a
constructed wall with two panes of two-way tempered glass installed. The film’s poetic narrative explores this
particular duality as an intrinsic part of the Black experience. It posits abjection, violence, and eroticism as the
ingredients that make up the “between” and are considered to be the binding agents of Beauty & Horror.
Exploring the eco-geography of Blackness, this diptych focuses on the sensorial and somatic experiences that
gives blackness a distinct and inherently racialized materiality. This work looks at Beauty & Horror using the
symbology of the blackberry fruit as part of the eco-geography and a metaphor for the Black figure.
Free and open to the public.
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