Francesco Urbano Ragazzi

Jonas Mekas. Filming Independence

Scandinavia House | The Brooklyn Rail | Anthology Film Archives
13-14 January, 2021 from 1 p.m. (ET)

2-day webinar
Curated by Francesco Urbano Ragazzi
Organized by Lithuanian Culture Institute | Humboldt Books

Jonas Mekas. Filming Independence

13th and 14th January 2021, thirty years after the tragic and courageous struggle that led the Lithuanian people to regain their independence, two international online panel discussions will be dedicated to Jonas Mekas and his last book, which retraces those events from a personal perspective. Titled Transcript 04 44’ 14” Lithuania and the Collapse of the USSR (Humboldt Books, 2020), the book originates from a movie by Mekas which is at the same time a precious historical document and an important piece of avant-garde cinema.
The curators of the publication, Francesco Urbano Ragazzi will dialogue with other thinkers, artists, and historians in a virtual roundtable involving Italy, France, Israel, Lithuania, and the U.S.
Organized by the Lithuanian Culture Institute in these different countries in collaboration with Humboldt Books and the Anthology Film Archives, the 2-day event will be hosted by Scandinavia House and the Brooklyn Rail.
Special guest of the gathering will be the first Head of State of the Republic of Lithuania, Vytautas Landsbergis, who described Jonas Mekas’ book with the following words: “Lithuania became part of the American life for some months, for one year, for two years and Jonas took it into his evidence, into his camera. Jonas comes as a reminder and does present Lithuania as a reminder. Lithuania is a little reminder of very great things.”
This online engagement is presented with support from the Consulate General of the Republic of Lithuania in New York, the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania in Italy, the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania in France, and the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania in Israel. Thanks to Gražina Michnevičiūtė (Cultural Attaché, Consulate General of the Republic of Lithuania in New York), Oona & Sebastian Mekas. Full Program

January 13, 2021, 1 p.m. ET
Topic: The cinematic diary as a tool for historical and political writing
Moderator: Juozas Kazlas, Political Analyst, New York
Vytautas Landsbergis, first Head of State of the Republic of  Lithuania, Vilnius
Pascal Le Segretain, Photographer for Getty Images, Paris
Oona Mekas, daughter of Jonas Mekas and Chair of the Board of Trustees: Anthology Film Archives, New York
Giovanna Silva, Editorial Director Humboldt Books, Milan
Francesco Urbano Ragazzi, Curatorial Team, Milan

January 14, 2021, 1 p.m. ET
Topic: Re-filming history as subjective media archaeology
Moderator: Francesco Urbano Ragazzi, Curatorial Team, Milan
Lukas Brasiskis, PhD candidate at New York University, New York
Avi Lubin, Curator at HaMidrasha Gallery – Hayarkon 19, Tel Aviv
Philippe-Alain Michaud, Curator at the Musée National d’Art Moderne – Centre Pompidou, Paris
Kelly Taxter, Barnett and Annalee Newman Curator of Contemporary Art at the Jewish Museum, New York

From January 6 to 20
The Anthology Film Archive will make Jonas Mekas’s film “Lithuania and The Collapse of the USSR” available, free of charge on its website.