Miranda July is a filmmaker, artist, and writer. As a teenager in Berkeley, she co-authored the fanzine Snarla and performed in underground music clubs. In 1995 she dropped out of film school and moved to Portland, Oregon, where she started the video chainletter project Big Miss Moviola (later renamed Joanie 4 Jackie), which she “imagined would be the start of a revolution of girls and women making movies and sharing them with each other.” The project helped generate a network and community of like-minded artists and aspiring filmmakers, encouraging women to tell their stories and giving a voice to those who are often silent. July’s own surreal and earnest style of storytelling, found in her performances, video art, feature-length films, audio recordings, and fiction writing, similarly provides a platform for seldom-heard perspectives and intimate experiences, from Michael Loggins’s list of fears in Nest of Tens to the frustrations of a 12-year-old Olympic swimmer and the ambitions of her mother in Atlanta. July’s characters navigate familiar worlds with sincerity and, at times, bewilderment, as they strive to find connection. July’s practice, in both form and content, pushes through communication barriers to bring people together. The participatory website Learning to Love You More and new mobile app Somebody™ share the same ambition. LTLYM’s co-creators posted assignments that more than 10,000 people around the world voluntarily completed, from “Take a picture of strangers holding hands” to “Write down a recent argument.” Much like Joanie 4 Jackie, Learning to Love You More equalized the roles of audience, artist, and curator. Somebody™ is an app and public art project in which strangers deliver messages between friends. July lives in Los Angeles.
Tue May 18th