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Porter’s Cinebooth

Listing details: Porter’s Cinebooth, a Fine Arts film installation
When: The Cinebooth will be unveiled on Monday 25 March, and will remain in the Film Archive cafe until Saturday 25 May.
Where: The New Zealand Film Archive, 84 Taranaki St, Wellington


Porter’s Cinebooth

Visitors to the Film Archive will be able to enjoy a new mini cinema when Christchurch artist and film maker Alex Porter travels to Wellington with her Cinebooth. The Cinebooth is a free-standing, individual screening device (rather like a photo booth), replete with velvet curtains and a plush red floor. Porter’s film, N or Nor W, Study of a Canterbury Wind (2011), will play in the intimate space formed by the booth’s dark walls.

Porter’s Cinebooth was initially developed by Porter as part of her MFA, which she completed at the University of Canterbury in 2012.

The installation, which will be situated in the Film Archive cafe, offers a novelty short film for people waiting, meeting, or simply wanting seven minutes of cinematic escapism.

The name, “Porter’s Cinebooth,” embossed on a copper title plate, evokes early Twentieth Century projector branding (Simplex, for example). The name Porter refers to both the film/booth maker, Alex Porter, and the cinematic pioneer Edwin S. Porter, who later moved into manufacturing motion picture projectors for Simplex.

N or Nor W, Study of a Canterbury Wind (2011) plays on a wide screen HD monitor (in loop) with closed headphones for an optimal Cantabrian Nor’ west wind experience. Set in 1950s Canterbury, the theme of the Nor’ wester is explored through a young girl’s perspective, as her weatherman father’s interview broadcasts over the wireless.

N or Nor W (2011) pays homage to Len Lye, referring to his short film of the near same title, N or NW (1937). Porter appropriates the earlier N or NW’s title sequence and “stream of consciousness” styled narrative. Lye’s Fine Arts style, set into the formal British context hits a chord with (British ex-pat) Porter as she develops her own “fictu-mentary” pictures. It is Lye’s surreal cinema, playful camerawork and editing mixed with consistently brilliant choreography of image and sound that inspires Porter’s film making.

Porter’s Cinebooth will be unveiled on Monday 25 March, and will remain in the Film Archive cafe until Saturday 25 May.

The Porter's Cinebooth exhibition will close with a screening of Alex Porter's and Len Lye's films, at 7pm on Saturday 25 May. Following the screening Porter and a panel of Len Lye experts will discuss the films.

This project was made possible with the support of Creative New Zealand.

Cast: The Kentish Barnes Family and Martin Howells.
Crew: John Chrisstoffels, Ed Lust, Nick White, Eugene Lee, Rick Harvie and Alexandra Porter.
Special thanks to: The Porter Family, Matt Stockwell, Nathan and Eli Pohio, Juliet Peter and Josephine McCullough, Neil and Gae Cherry, Rob Hood, Tim Jones, Sally Aldred, Christchurch City Art Gallery, Te Puna O Waiwhetu, Bill de Friez, Gaby Montejo, Chris Kitson, Richard and Dawn Sparks, Chris and Usa Dabinett, and The New Zealand Sound Archives Ngā Taonga Kōrero.


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