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Gwendolyn Audrey Foster
Film Studies Professor / Cultural Theorist / Filmmaker
Gwendolyn Audrey Foster is a prolific author, a cultural theorist, Willa Cather Professor of Film Studies and English, and a film and video artist. Her early documentary and narrative films are archived at many universities and libraries, and are routinely screened in college classes internationally. Foster's more recent experimental works are designed as video installations and films for gallery and museum projection.
Foster's films and videos have been screened at Outfest LA, Bi Arts Festival Toronto, Anthology Film Archives, NY, Nederlands Filmmuseum, Rice Museum, Collective for Living Cinema, Swedish Cinemateket, National Museum of Women in the Arts, DC, Bibliotheque Cantonale, Switzerland, International Film Festival of Kerala, India, Films de Femmes, Créteil, Women’s Film Festival of Madrid, Kyobo Center, Korea, Santa Barbara Museum of Art, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Université Laval, Quebec, Forum Yokohama, Amos Eno Gallery, NY, SLA 307 Art Space, NY, Maryland Institute College of Art, Studio 44 Stockholm, Museum of the Future, Berlin, X-12 Festival, UK, BWA Contemporary Art Museum, Poland, Lys d’Or Rome, MoHA TX, Filmhuis Cavia, Amsterdam, nGKB gallery, Berlin, Chimeres Space, Greece, and many other venues and festivals around the world.
Foster’s acclaimed documentary film “The Women Who Made the Movies” has been screened through the world, and was shown at Anthology Film Archives in New York City as part of a celebration of early female directors in September 2016, organized by Women Make Movies.
Foster's “Virtual Gallery - The Gaia Triptych” was featured in "The Pythians: A Portal for Art, Photography, Poetry and Video," in June, 2016 and also screened as part of the HearteartH 2016 International Video Art Project from Berlin and Milan on Visual Container TV, January 13 – February 15, 2017. In addition, her new HD videos were screened at The Amos Eno Gallery and SLA 307 Art Space in Manhattan in November, 2016, and at The Maryland Institute College of Art in April, 2017.
In March and April 2018, the BWA Contemporary Art Gallery in Katowice, Poland, presented a six-week long retrospective of Foster's new video work. In May 2018, she presented a screening of her videos as part of The Experimental Response Cinema at The Museum of Human Achievement in Austin, Texas. In the summer of 2018, she had a one woman show of her work at Filmhuis Cavia in Amsterdam.
Foster's iconic film Self Portrait [Détournement] was screened as part of NewFilmmakers at Anthology Film Archives on September 11, 2018. Her one woman show, Queer Experimental Films, was screened July/August 2018 on Salto Netherlands International TV, and she had a one woman show at The Museum of The Future in Berlin, Germany, curated by Witold Stypa, on October 28, 2017.
In addition, her film/video work has been screened at Studio 44 Gallery in Stockholm, Sweden; the Videodrome Gallery in Marseille, France; the Lys d’Or International Art Gallery in Rome; the X-12 Festival in Gainsborough, England; the Enguage Experimental Film Festival in Seattle; the Chimeres Gallery in Athens, Greece; and the NGBK Gallery in Berlin. Her most recent work is the ambitious "glitch art" four-panel video installation In Art We Trust.
In 2019, her entire body of work was preserved in the UCLA Film and Television Archive in Los Angeles, amounting to a total of more than 150 experimental videos.
I often incorporate "found" clips, many intended for use in advertising. I hope to subvert their commercial nature by re-fashioning them as noncommercial artwork. In other cases, I create imagery from scratch, using electronic "glitch" material to create at world at once real, yet removed from our everyday existence. I make contemplative films that stare at the viewer, potentially disrupting passive viewing. My films look at you. I embrace that which is surreal, enigmatic, and hypnotic. I also make slow abstracts; and sometimes disturbing, haunting films. At times, my work displays a response to political issues, in retelling myths from an eco-feminist perspective, for example. I believe that active viewers co-create, therefore my intent is sometimes less significant that that of viewer. I prefer unusual soundscapes and sometimes make my own musical tracks.