Cinematic Voices: Claudio Caldini

Cinematic Voices: Claudio Caldini

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CalArts Campus


Fantasmas Cromáticos: 8mm Visions of Claudio Caldini 
Super-8mm Films and Performance

Buenos Aires-based Claudio Caldini is a dedicated 8mm filmmaker, performance artist, composer and curator. Since the late 1960s, Caldini has created dozens of short films and performances using several Super-8mm projectors and accompanying sound compositions. His performances have been presented at many galleries and museums in North, Central and South America as well as several countries in Europe. Claudio Caldini was an active member of the "Cine Ex" group gathered at the Goethe Institut Buenos Aires between 1974 and 1983 to promote production, screening and lecturing on experimental film. 

Caldini works with his own images that are transformed through hand-manipulated processes (filtering, chemical application, re-photography) into elements for elaborate new works. He has a strong feel for the celluloid material, and his work is remarkable for its sensuality, improvisation and precision.

Claudio has mentored several generations of younger 8mm filmmakers who have gained international prominence over the past decade, and has collaborated with artists in many media. Caldini's visit to California is part of Los Angeles Filmforum's film series Ism, Ism, Ism: Experimental Cinema in Latin America (Ismo, Ismo, Ismo: Cine Experimental en América Latina) and was made possible by the Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts.

 “My films and projection performances work with possibilities of Super-8mm projectors as performance tools, and use such techniques as coloring black and white film with filters; transforming the projector’s reels into external shutters and then applying these shutters to filming abstract patterns and then working with them in performance. I mix color and black and white film stocks onto a single emulsion through back projecting, reversing multiple projection on a single screen to create overlays, working with the projector loops aesthetically, and creating animation by using aspects of the camera (position, focus, variable focal length, diaphragm).”

This will be Claudio Caldini’s first residency in Los Angeles, and it includes screenings at University of Southern California, Echo Park Film Center, REDCAT and in the CalArts Bijou Theater as part of ‘Cinematic Voices.’

"It is in the work of Claudio Caldini where we find the most crystallized expression of an audiovisual style that creates great, even universal potential from reduced means-a cinema of 'cosmic miniatures.' In Caldini's work... the technical capacities of the medium are manipulated and mined to maximum effect, highlighting everything that would make Super 8 an autonomous form."
- Pablo Marín, "A Pocket Constellation: In Praise of Argentina Experimental Cinema in Super 8," Ism, Ism, Ism / Ismo, Ismo, Ismo: Experimental Cinema in Latin America, eds. Jesse Lerner and Luciano Piazza.

“[Caldini’s films] are dense and beautiful experiences, marrying his interests in the technical possibilities of the medium with his deep philosophical and spiritual studies. Precise studies of color, rhythm and location, they glow with an existential magic guided by a masterful hand.” – Early Monthly Segments, Toronto

Claudio Caldini was born in Buenos Aires in 1952 and has been making experimental films since 1970. In 1971 he began his studies at the Centro Experimental del Instituto Nacional de Cinematografía (Buenos Aires) and attended film seminars with Alberto Fischerman (1977), Werner Nekes (1980) and Werner Schroeter (1983) at the Goethe-Institut (Buenos Aires). He studied Modern and Audioperceptive Dance with Rolf Gelewski in Salvador da Bahía and São Paulo (Brazil), in 1978 and 1982, respectively. Caldini worked as a lighting designer and operator for theater and rock concerts and as a programmer of electronic instruments, in association with Jorge Haro (1989–90). He was the film and video curator at the Museo de Arte Moderno de Buenos Aires (Argentina) from 1998 to 2004, and a member of the Jury of the 2003 International Short Film Festival Oberhausen (Germany). In 2005, he was an Artist in Residence at the Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown (Scotland). He is the recipient of the following awards: the Premio Leonardo from the Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes (1997); Beca de la Fundación Antorchas (1998); the Gran Premio at the III Festival Franco-Latinoamericano de Video Arte for his work Heliografía (1994); and Primer Premio at the Primera Semana del Cine Experimental, ARCO ’91, for his work El devenir de la piedras (1991).