Film Screening: The Motherhood Archives

Goleb Project Space
Burgermeester de Vlugtlaan 125
1063 BJ Amsterdam
The Netherlands

Film screening of The Motherhood Archives by Irene Lusztig, followed by a discussion between Lusztig and Deirdre M. Donoghue, and an open Q&A.

The screening takes place during a day of performances at the Mothers in Arts Residency program, a project initiated by Csilla Klenyanszki, hosted by Goleb and supported by The Mondriaan Fonds.  For more information on the whole day's program and participating artists, please see here.  

This event is baby/children/partners friendly. There will be a playground and a quiet room with a changing table next to the space; partners are invited to take care of the children.

Reservation required by the 16th of March via: info@mothervoices.org

To see the trailer

THE MOTHERHOOD ARCHIVES
Archival montage, science fiction, and an homage to 70s feminist filmmaking are woven together to form this haunting and lyrical essay film excavating hidden histories of childbirth in the twentieth century. Assembling an extraordinary archive of over 100 educational, industrial, and medical training films (including newly rediscovered Soviet and French childbirth films) THE MOTHERHOOD ARCHIVES (2013, 91 min.) inventively untangles the complex, sometimes surprising genealogies of maternal education. From the first use of anesthetic ether in the 19th century to the postmodern 21st century hospital birthing suite, THE MOTHERHOOD ARCHIVES charts a fascinating course through the cultural history of pain, the history of obstetric anesthesia, and the little-known international history of the natural childbirth and Lamaze movements. Revealing a world of intensive training, rehearsal, and performative preparation for the unknown that is ultimately incommensurate with experience, THE MOTHERHOOD ARCHIVES is a meditation on the maternal body as a site of institutional control, ideological surveillance, medical knowledge, and nationalist state intervention. Finally, the film works as a feminist recuperation of obsolete maternal histories, as a visual analysis of the persistent disciplining of the pregnant / laboring body, and as a new, contemporary counter-archive of women’s experiential narratives.


IRENE LUSZTIG is a filmmaker, visual artist, archival researcher, and amateur seamstress. Her film and video work mines old images and technologies for new meanings in order to reframe, recuperate, and reanimate forgotten and neglected histories.  Often beginning with rigorous research in archives, her work brings historical materials into conversation with the present day, inviting the viewer to explore historical spaces as a way of contemplating larger questions of politics, ideology, and the production of personal, collective, and national memories. 
Born in England to Romanian parents, Irene grew up in Boston and has lived in France, Italy, Romania, China, and Russia. She received her BA in filmmaking and Chinese studies from Harvard and completed her MFA in film and video at Bard College. Her debut feature film, Reconstruction (2001) was recognized with a Boston Society of Film Critics Discovery award and won best documentary at the New England Film Festival. Her work has been screened around the world, including at MoMA, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Anthology Film Archives, Pacific Film Archive, Flaherty NYC, IDFA Amsterdam, and on television in the US, Europe, and Taiwan. She has received grants from the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities, Massachusetts Cultural Council, LEF Foundation, New York State Council for the Arts, and Sustainable Arts Foundation and has been awarded fellowships at the MacDowell Colony, the Flaherty Film Seminar, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, and Harvard’s Film Study Center. She is the 2016-17 recipient of a Rydell Visual Arts Fellowship and a Fulbright Fellowship. She teaches filmmaking at UC Santa Cruz where she is Associate Professor of Film and Digital Media; she lives in the Santa Cruz Mountains. 

DEIRDRE M. DONOGHUE is a visual and performance artist, director of m/other voices foundation for art, research, theory / dialogue / community involvement, PhD researcher at The Institute for Cultural Inquiry, Utrecht University, a mother and a birth doula.

 

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