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April 29: Jenny Perlin

7pm at The Sunview Luncheonette
221 Nassau Ave Ground Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11222

The Long Sleepers
hd video and hand-drawn animations

Well there's a lot of interesting stories: Chicken Little and 'the sky is falling,' and The Three Little Pigs, I think we're the fourth pig. We're not in the brick house, we're the fourth pig…and The Ant and the Grasshopper, I like that…and I can relate to the ant, that stores, and that's underground and that's busy and bringing in things to store up for the winter. So the ant is the one who prepares, who's organized, while the grasshopper fiddles away the summer, dances and fiddles and plays and makes no preparation for the time that's coming...and then dies, as the cold comes...     --Edward Peden, Subterra Castle, Eskridge, Kansas, January 2018

Since 2014 I have been working on a project about “long sleeper narratives.”  Long sleepers are outsiders, considered unproductive or heretical members of their communities. They are the people you've read about, those foolish folk who head up into the hills and fall asleep in a cavern or a hollow and wake up 20, 50, or 100 years later. The Long Sleepers project is made up of experimental animations, live-action film, drawings, and performances. I have explored the devastating environmental phenomena that are sinkholes, the formation and development of caverns and cave tourism, mining mysteries in a novel by Jules Verne, and the plagiarized origin of the Rip van Winkle story and its transposition into early American legend.

My current series of films in The Long Sleepers project is comprised of video portraits and hand-drawn animations. The videos portray 21st century Americans who have decided to leave the surface of the earth and make their lives underground. The short animations are associative, lyrical pieces that emerge from reflections on my experience with each subterranean dweller and a work of literature or history.

Jenny Perlin makes films, videos, installations, and drawings. Her projects draw on interdisciplinary research interests in history, cultural studies, literature and linguistics. Her films incorporate innovative techniques to investigate history as it relates to the present. Perlin shoots 16mm film and digital video and combines live-action, staged, and documentary images with hand-drawn, text-based animation.

Perlin’s films have been shown as single-channel works and multi-channel installations at numerous venues including the Guggenheim Museum, Mass MoCA, MoMA, Guangzhou Triennial, IFC Center, Berlin and Rotterdam film festivals, the Drawing Center, and The Kitchen, NY. Support has come from the LEF Foundation, NYSCA, Experimental Television Center, CEC Artslink, American Center, Geneva, and the Arnold Foundation. Artist residencies include IASPIS Sweden, Wexner Center, Civitella Ranieri, ISCP, and commissions from Bard College CCS, Aldrich Museum, BAC Geneva, The Queens Museum, and Expo 02, Switzerland.