Archiving Series: Archiving Through People
Barbara Hammer was one of the inaugural Creative Capital Awardees and one of the first artists to serve as a workshop facilitator. One of Barbara’s passions was providing resources to new generations of artists so that they could start protecting their legacies from the early stages of their careers. This conversation will unpack the ways that Barbara’s community helped to preserve her archive even as it was continuing to grow, and how she built a legacy that continues to give back today. The conversation will feature insights from Florrie Burke, Barbara’s partner and executor of her estate; Carmel Curtis, archivist and co-curator of the exhibition “Barbara Hammer: Evidentiary Bodies” at Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art; and Sarah Keller, scholar and author of Barbara Hammer: Pushing Out of the Frame. The conversation will be moderated by Johnny Symons, filmmaker and Director of the Queer Cinema Project at San Francisco State University where the Barbara Hammer Awards are administered.
Florrie Burke and Barbara Hammer were life partners for thirty one years. Since Hammer’s death in 2019, Burke has been the Estate Executor and Manager of the Art Legacy. This has been a labor of love and discovery. She works collaboratively with Company and KOW- Berlin galleries, the Academy of Motion Pictures, Electronic Arts Intermix, Beinecke Library at Yale and others where Hammer’s work is archived. She has named Louky Keijsers Koning as Executive Director of the Art Estate and is assisting her in the final organization and cataloguing of art works. Burke is a consultant on trauma, exploitation and human trafficking to governmental and non-governmental agencies. She serves as an Expert Witness on cases of human trafficking and worker exploitation after years of training criminal justice actors and victim service providers throughout the world. Burke was awarded the inaugural Presidential Award for Extraordinary Efforts to Combat Trafficking in Persons in May 2013.
Carmel Curtis currently works as an archivist in the Moving Image Archive of Indiana University; is a board member of the non-profit Screen Slate, a daily resource for independent, repertory, and gallery screenings in New York City (and beyond); and is a is a proud but distant member of XFR Collective, a volunteer run group that works to increase community access to at-risk audiovisual media. Carmel’s previous projects include work with the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Deluxe, Dirty Looks, Leslie-Lohman Museum of Gay and Lesbian Art, New York University, and the United Nations.
Sarah Keller is professor of art and cinema studies at the University of Massachusetts Boston. Her research focuses on experimental form, film experience, and feminist issues in cinema. Her publications include Maya Deren: Incomplete Control (Columbia University Press, 2014), Anxious Cinephilia: Pleasure and Peril at the Movies (Columbia University Press, 2020), and Barbara Hammer: Pushing Out of the Frame (Wayne State University, 2021).
Johnny Symons is an Associate Professor at the School of Cinema at San Francisco State University, and an Emmy-nominated filmmaker with 30 years experience creating award-winning LGBTQ documentaries. His 2002 film “Daddy & Papa” was nominated for the Sundance Grand Jury Prize, aired on PBS’ Independent Lens and garnered 12 festival awards. His other feature documentaries include “Out Run” (2016), which premiered at Full Frame and broadcast on PBS’ DocWorld, and “Ask Not” (2008), which premiered on PBS’ Independent Lens and screened at the US Capitol. He is co-producer of the Academy Award-nominated “Long Night’s Journey Into Day”, which won the Sundance Grand Jury Prize, and executive producer of “Pray Away”, which premiered at the 2020 Tribeca Film Festival and is streaming on Netflix. Symons graduated with honors from Brown University and has a master’s in documentary production from Stanford. He directs Queer Cinema Project at SFSU.