FRIDAY, MAY 10TH - 730pm
TUESDAY, MAY 14TH - 10pm
MONDAY. MAY 27th - 10pm
“As science grows, religious belief seems to have diminished… The new machines are now invested with spiritual qualities.” - ARTHUR LIPSETT
May 1st marks the anniversary of Arthur Lipsett’s death, weeks shy of what would have been his 50th birthday. Who was Arthur Lipsett? A remarkable, yet unsung experimental filmmaker, he received praise from some of the great auteurs of his time and inspired generations of Canadian artists. Despite this, his obscurity continues to shadow his influence. One might attribute this to his reserved character– which would become more reclusive and idiosyncratic as he struggled to support himself amidst a deteriorating mental health. Arthur turned down an offer to work with Stanley Kubrick and gave an inscrutable response to a Harvard invitation for artist residency, “ I cannot come to Harvard at this time in history.”
Others have drawn attention to the lack of support from the National Film Board of Canada, which was evident even in the late eighties. In a conference regarding Canadian artists, Stan Brackhage recalled how he had been given a print of Very Nice, Very Nice, one of a few that had been rescued from the NFB’s garbage. But Lipsett’s distinct visual style lives on: dense, baroque and engaging many types of meaning concurrently, constructed with a focus and precision that demands the same from the viewer.
Spectacle is proud to present a near-complete retrospective of Lipsett’s work, from high-quality remasters generously provided by the National Film Board of Canada.