Project Trans(m)it Pushes the Boundaries of Art and Technology

Transmit1

by Alex Strine for The Dance Journal

We live in the future. With the internet we can communicate with people on opposite sides of the planet without ever having to meet face to face. The implications of technology on art are still growing, and it is certainly a space ripe for exploration. Entering that space is Project Trans(m)it, a long term research and performance project interested in collaboration. Led by choreographers Lora Allen (Philadelphia), Becca Weber (UK), and Megan Mizanty (NYC), Trans(m)it is all about pushing the limits of collaboration through technology. For instance, you may have noticed that they don’t live in the same state, and in one case not even the same country. This is the power of the internet.

I harp on this point so much because this week, Project Trans(m)it is hosting the truly unique Trans(m)it: An International Film Festival. In collaboration with the Iron Factory, they are hosting a week long online film festival. This isn’t a completely new idea, but I’ve never seen one executed with the thought and care Trans(m)it has put into this one. Each day features a new set of international artists. You can purchase a ticket for the whole week, or you can pop in and out on a daily basis.

If you happen to be catching this early in the week I would recommend springing for the full week pass simply because the number of films you can see from the comfort of your own computer is worth it. This is about as diverse a set of films as you’ll find anywhere.

The selection I previewed featured films from multiple countries, with vastly different styles. I was not let down by any of them. To highlight a few: Alice by Ryan Hamelin from NYC, was a spin on what I would call a “dance liberation” film in which we see a woman (Katherine McManus) moving through different recognizable NYC locations, avoiding dancers all around her until she lets her inner artist free. I feel it’s a piece about finding art everywhere and integrating yourself into it. Chaos Theory by Masha Gurina from the UK was a short and sweet experimentation on movement and the way things come and go. Shot from a high birds eye view and heavily edited, it’s on of the most constructed films in the program. Evoke, by Christa Boarini and Alexander Gabrielli from LA, one of Trans(m)it’s “Best of” selections, was a moving and cinematic film with a strong concept and a lot of ideas that I won’t lay down here, because it’s such a unique execution I don’t want to spoil it for you.

I highly recommend checking this festival out, even if it’s only for a day pass. Schedules are available at http://www.theironfactory.org/#!events/c4x0 and are listed by featured artist. Tickets are $7/day, or $20 for a full week pass. The whole festival culminates in a live screening of the “Best of” program, which I haven’t seen yet but if it’s really the best of the program it should be excellent. You can see it for $10, or $20 with the happy hour beforehand. If you want to dive in head first, there’s also a $30 option for full week, happy hour, and screening.

Just the idea of this kind of festival fascinates me. We live in a time when we can watch films from around the world with ease. I’m honestly surprised that online festivals like this haven’t caught on more yet, but hopefully Trans(m)it will be a trailblazer in terms of content and execution.

About Alex Strine

Alex Strine is an award winning screenwriter, critic, and filmmaker. He specializes in reviews of fiction, children’s books, and graphic novels. His work has appeared in Weal, WinkBooks, and Cracked. In 2015 he was a finalist in the Nickelodeon Script First Contest.

View All Posts

1 Comment

  1. Alex,
    Thank you for this great review! We are glad that our excitement for the festival and the potentials for international collaboration are mirrored in the festival, and that you enjoyed the preview so much. 🙂
    With gratitude,
    Becca Weber

Comments are closed.