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CFAT celebrates local content in the 2014 AFF & AFCOOP’s 40th Anniversary Screening


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 10th, 2014 (Halifax)

Centre for Art Tapes (CFAT) is excited to see an abundance of local content in the 34th Atlantic Film Festival and AFCOOP’s 40th anniversary screening, including many works produced by CFAT members and former CFAT Media Art Scholars (MAS) who have cut their filmmaking teeth and/or developed their careers at the Centre.

Located in the north end of Halifax, CFAT is an artist-run centre dedicated to supporting media artists working in video, sound, and electronics, with affordable and accessible equipment and production suites. “We also provide training for artists at all stages, through both the Media Arts Scholarship Program and individual topic-driven workshops” says Director Keith McPhail. “There are many other filmmaking resources in Halifax as well, making it a very creative place”.

The CFAT Media Art Scholarship Program offers one-on-one mentorships with professionals as well as intensive workshops to facilitate the completion of each scholar’s media art project. CFAT also acts as a space where independent artists can network and share expertise on a peer-to-peer basis.

Now in its 35th year, CFAT supports art films, animations, documentaries, and dramatic shorts. In part, it represents an entranceway to the local film industry, as is illustrated by the number of productions with CFAT connections that are featured and even spotlighted in this year’s AFF.

From shorts to features and documentaries as well, there is something local in the Festival this year for everyone. “Centre for Art Tapes is thrilled that the work of so many filmmakers that we have helped along the way has found a place in the Atlantic Film Festival lineup,” says McPhail. “Hopefully Halifax audiences will flock to these films, be inspired to see more works by these artists, support the local scene, and maybe even be inspired to try their own hand at filmmaking.”

CFAT members in AFCOOP’s 40th Anniversary Spotlight Screening:

Sept. 17th, 7:30pm
Park Lane Cinema
Buy Tickets

8 Frames Per Second (1986)
Director Chuck Clark
Runtime 11min
High contrast black and white photography, a subjective camera and a quirky sense of humour contribute to this extraordinary portrait of the filmmaker’s neighbour Sophia, a working class woman from Cape Breton with opinions she’s not unwilling to (loudly) share. Clark’s highly personal film is at once familiar and dispassionate – an innovative documentary which moves as kinetically as any action film.

Nova Scotia Tourist Industries (1998)
Director Jim MacSwain
Runtime 12min
You have a headache and your Nova Scotia Tourist Industries boss has just given you the all-important task: to entice tourists with a splashy brochure to commit suicide in Nova Scotia. With unemployment at alarming proportions, perhaps this new suicide industry will put food on the table.

There’s a Flower in My Pedal (2004)
Director Andrea Dorfman
Runtime 5min
A short film about bicycling and love.

Assembled (2006)
Director Becka Barker
Runtime 5min
A hand-etched and collaged film where three figures navigate the modern social spaces of being “together alone.”

Glamour Guts (2008)
Director Jasmine Oore
Runtime 3min
A short instructional film on how to live glamorously with intestinal disease.

Other CFAT Member Screenings in the 2014 AFF:

Alan Collins, Terminal
Saturday, September 13, 4:00pm
Encore Screening: Monday, September 15, 4:30pm

Deanne Foley, Relative Happiness (co-produced by Alan Collins)
Saturday, September 13, 7:00pm

CFAT member Alan Collins has a career that spans more than 30 years of editing, directing, and producing films, including works with directors David Cronenberg and Roger Corman. His latest film Terminal screens in Atlantic Shorts 3. This half-hour portrait of Dartmouth’s new main bus terminal captures the comings and going of its characters from sunrise into the chilly still of the night. Collins is also one of the producers of the Atlantic Feature Film Relative Happiness, an adaptation of Lesley Crewe’s best-selling novel by the same name.

More about Terminal
More about Relative Happiness

Dawn George, Negative Nature
Monday, September 15, 6:30pm
Encore Screening: Thursday, September 18, 10:00pm

Dawn George is a CFAT member and 2010-2011 MAS scholar who lives in Halifax, NS. Her short film, Negative Nature, is screening in Atlantic Shorts 6. Bugs, slugs and time-lapse plants are treated in film reversal, embellished with a sophisticated sound design and delivered with touches of drama and humour in a seven-minute blast of challenging cinematic reverie. Recently nominated for a Golden Sheaf Award in the Experimental category at the Yorkton Film Festival in Saskatchewan, it was made possible through an Open Grant from the Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative.

More about Negative Nature

Ariella Pahlke, What you did before you were born and Strategies of Hope
Sunday, September 14, 3:00pm
Encore Screening: Tuesday, September 16, 4:30pm

Ariella Pahlke, another CFAT member and MAS Mentor living in Terence Bay, NS, has spent the last 22 years making documentaries and independent shorts, collaborating on multi-media performance pieces, curating, consulting, and teaching. Pahlke has two works in the Atlantic Shorts 4 program: What you did before you were born and Strategies of Hope. What you did before you were born, created while Pahlke was a CFAT Artist-in-Residence, is a video letter to her son Étienne. In this POV documentary, she imagines and questions Étienne’s prenatal experience and its relationship with her actions, environment, and her own complex family history. Strategies of Hope, sponsored by CFAT, is a collaborative documentary wherein Pahlke works with patients, staff, and family members at the Nova Scotia Rehab Centre’s Acquired Brain Injury Unit to tell their stories and share strategies for recovery. Using a variety of art forms including music, the film opens up the tough challenges of dealing with a stroke or brain injury to reveal the importance of creativity and hope in the process of recovery.

More About What you did before you were born
More about Strategies of Hope


Tim Tracey, Canadian Ninja
Tuesday, September 16, 9:00pm

Tim Tracey, a long-standing CFAT member, will premiere his latest film Canadian Ninja in the Atlantic Features Program. Tracey came to CFAT to gain affordable access to equipment and editing suites. He started with shorts and animation (his animation, KREB, received special recognition at the 2013 Atlantic Film Festival), and has built up to this feature film starring patriotic Buck North, a hero for our times. This Canadian Ninja makes an epic journey to the North, confronts great challenges and faces down super enemies in an effort to save Canada. What genre is it? Tim says “It’s out there. It’s an 80’s throw-back piece; Buck is the badass action hero Canada’s never had.”

More about Canadian Ninja

Andrea Dorfman, Heartbeat
Friday, September 12, 7:00pm

Veronica Simmonds, Dr. Clock
Monday, September 15, 6:30pm
Encore Screening: Thursday, September 18, 10:00pm

Stephanie Young, Masculins
Sunday, September 14, 3:00pm
Encore Screening: Tuesday, September 16, 4:30pm

A number of former CFAT MAS Scholars also have films included in AFF this year. 1997 Scholar Andrea Dorfman’s film Heartbeat is featured as an Atlantic Gala Presentation. Heartbeat portrays Halifax’s North End BoHo life as a kind of contemporary paradise through the character of Justine, a meek but determined office worker. Left with a relationship broken and a dream unfulfilled, Justine opens her world to the unexpected and finds strength in the beat of her heart. 2014 Scholars Stephanie Young and Veronica Simmonds each have shorts featured that were produced during their participation in MAS. Young’s Masculins is a portrait of three female-bodied people who each have distinct masculine identities, and embody transformation in very different ways. It will screen in Atlantic Shorts 4. Simmond’s Dr. Clock is about a horologist who spends his time fixing time, but who is also the first to tell you that time doesn’t really exist. It will screen in Atlantic Shorts 6.

More about Heartbeat
More about Masculins
More about Dr. Clock



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