There is so much more to the complexity to the life of the 1850s courtesan than has been developed by J.P. Dutta, the director and co-screenplay writer, in conjunction with his father, O.P. Dutta., of Umrao Jaan.
Drawing on the collections of the George Eastman Museum, a photography scholar seeks to reimagine how women have been pictured through the medium’s history in a new online project on Instagram.
“Making Swades was such an emotionally overwhelming experience that I never saw the finished product. Didn't want the feeling to end….” — Shah Rukh Khan (@iamsrk) December 17, 2013, Twitter
The George Eastman Museum has been entrusted with world-class collections and a National Historic Landmark. We are the stewards of these treasures for future generations. Preservation is paramount to our mission—an ethical imperative.
January 17 was Museum Selfie Day, a worldwide event that encourages visitors to engage with museums by taking and sharing selfies. In addition to our special after-hours event we hosted last week, we’re celebrating with a self-portrait social media challenge!
“Lagaan began as a dream, a nebulous dream dreamt for the first time as far back as 1996 by a man called Ashutosh Gowariker. Over the last 3 years I, and the entire cast and crew of Lagaan, have tried to help and support the man leading us to realize his dreams.”
Aamir Khan, May 5, 2001
My name is Nita Genova and, for reasons even I can’t fully explain, I LOVE BOLLYWOOD! I am on a quest to explore movies of India and I hope you will join me. I enjoyed Om Shanti Om the first time I saw it about eight or nine years ago as a new release on DVD. The story had all the right twists, the vibrant colors, stunningly gorgeous heroine, nasty (but handsome) villain, and most importantly, my favorite actor, Shah Rukh Khan (a.k.a. SRK) as Om "Omi" Prakash Makhija (in the 1970s) & Om Kapoor “OK” (in the 2000s). But I was too new to Bollywood movies then to really appreciate the nuances in this movie: the iconic actors’ cameos; the references to Bollywood films; or the improbability of getting so many members of Bollywood royalty together in one film! This movie is truly amazing, and even more so when you are aware of all the details.
From the first film to win Best Picture, Wings (1927), to the most recent winner, Moonlight (2016), almost everyone has seen at least one Academy Award winning film. To celebrate 90 years of Academy Award ceremonies, the Dryden Theatre has decided to highlight a vast variety of award-winning films, including features such as Gone with the Wind, All About Eve, On the Waterfront, The Godfather, The Silence of the Lambs, Unforgiven, and Schindler’s List, to name just a few. But what exactly do the Academy Awards mean to us here at the Dryden, or in a more general sense, what do they mean to the history of film?
For the past twenty-one years, the international photography community has gathered in November for Paris Photo, a photography fair featuring dealers’ booths, curated displays, artist talks, and photobooks. It takes place in the Grand Palais, a historic building with a vast metal-and-glass skylight that sets a beautiful tone for exploring the fair. The range of galleries is quite broad, from established to up-and-coming, presenting a wide variety of vintage and contemporary photographs. The emphasis is on art, but there are a few dealers who specialize in vernacular material or other genres of photography, particularly fashion and documentary/photojournalism.
For the past five years, I have been honored to be the Ron and Donna Fielding Director of the George Eastman Museum. As I reflect, I am thankful to our great staff, the Eastman Museum Council, and all of our members, donors, and volunteers for their essential contributions. I am grateful to our trustees and active trustees emeriti, who have worked with and supported me to formulate our strategic vision. In particular, I thank Thomas Jackson, Steven Schwartz, and Kevin Gavagan—who have served as chairs of the Board of Trustees during my tenure—and former chair Stephen Ashley, who has been an invaluable advisor.
The George Eastman Museum continually seeks out ways to collaborate with other cultural, educational, and community organizations. Such joint efforts create exciting opportunities to reach out to new audiences and share the tremendous assets in our region.
After two years of carefully selecting, scanning, editing, tagging, and in many cases transcribing tens of thousands of documents from the George Eastman Museum's Technicolor collections, our work here is done. Thanks to the generosity of the National Endowment for the Humanities, Technicolor, and the DeMille Foundation, as well as the incomparable expertise of our colleagues at the George Eastman Museum, the Technicolor Online Research Archive is live and freely available to anyone interested in the history of one of the most important companies in motion-picture history.
Universally admired by our museum’s trustees and staff, Steven Schwartz is a strong leader with a keen understanding of the role of a nonprofit board. The museum has greatly benefitted from his term as chair of the Board of Trustees, a responsibility he assumed in 2014 after joining the board in 2005 and serving as an officer for several years. As chair, Steven has emphasized the importance of developing our board and increasing trustee engagement. Deeply committed to giving back to society, he formerly served as treasurer of the board of Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.
During his tenure as the first curator of motion pictures at the George Eastman House from 1948 to 1977, James Card produced a collection of typed notes for film introductions he delivered at the Dryden Theatre, speaking engagements outside of the museum, and drafts of published works. The museum holds around two hundred of these documents that I have been processing for my personal project as a student of the L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation. The overall goal of my project is to provide access to this collection through the museum’s website.
The presentation of a silent film is generally not complete without a musical accompaniment, whether piano, organ, or orchestra of varying size. As modes of presentation became more standardized from the aughts to the early teens, demand grew for music that would easily synchronize with the images on screen. Publishers were quick to recruit composers to meet this demand. From 1913 through the end of the silent era in 1929, many thousands of compositions were written on both sides of the Atlantic to suit different emotions, moods, and scenes. As one of this year’s students of the L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation, I chose cataloging this collection as my personal project due to my love of both music and the silent cinema.
I adopted Douglas and Mary as my “lucky stars” quite some time ago, so when I arrived at the museum to attend The L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation, I delighted over the prospect of working with the Douglas Fairbanks Nitrate Still Negatives Collection. Thanks to my thoughtful classmates and instructors, my dream came true.
The George Eastman Museum invited a group of six RIT students from Professor Angela Kelly’s Photography Arts II course to tour the exhibition Robert Cumming: The Secret Life of Objects and make their own photographs inspired by the artist’s prolific career. The students connected with the witty nature of Cumming’s work, creating their own take on his use of illusion and the constructed image. We are excited to share their images and words about how they drew inspiration.
Rachel Behnke is currently pursuing a certificate in media and film preservation at The L. Jeffrey Selznick School of Film Preservation. In this blog post, she shares her independent processing project in Stills, Posters and Paper (SPP) collections.
The Trump administration’s 2018 budget calls for the complete elimination of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), and Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). This draconian act would be a harsh setback for the George Eastman Museum and other arts, cultural, and educational institutions. It would harm many people who benefit from the agencies’ programs: artists; scholars and students; veterans and the disabled; and children, parents, and the elderly. It is urgent that we all advocate for these institutions, which are invaluable to our culture and society.
In the beginning of January, I had the pleasure of spending four days doing research in the archives at the Eastman Museum. During this time, I consulted two collections—the newly catalogued Leo Hurwitz Papers and some of Eastman’s own departmental files from its first film curator James Card. My interest in these collections stems from my research on American independent film distributor Thomas Brandon (1908-1982). Brandon had worked with both Hurwitz and Card at various points during his career as a member of the New York Workers Film and Photo League and employee at Garrison Films in the 1930s, and as President of his own company, Brandon Films, Inc., from 1940 to 1968.