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Home > Festivals & Events > Splitting the Choir: The Moving Images of Donigan Cumming
Splitting the Choir: The Moving Images of Donigan Cumming
April 29, 2011 until May 11, 2011

The Canadian Film Institute is pleased to present Splitting the Choir, a two-part retrospective of the videographic work of Montreal-based artist Donigan Cumming. The event marks a period of sixteen years since Cumming’s first video: A PRAYER FOR NETTIE (1995), a haunting and unsettling elegy to the artist’s long-time photographic model Nettie Harris, known for her stunning poses in the photographic series Pretty Ribbons (1993). An award-winning photographer and filmmaker, Cumming has internationally exhibited and screened videos that are widely praised (and criticized) for their genre-bending, unsettling iconoclasm. Working from within the social realist documentary mode, Cumming explores the frontiers of representation, pushing ethical boundaries into uncharted areas – where many artists fear to tread. Cumming’s work blurs the lines between ethnographic film and the theatre of the absurd, incisively splitting the choir of audience opinion. As he continues to chart the underrepresented life-worlds and experiences of the marginal (elderly, ill, damaged, broken) citizens of Montreal, those who would seem to be so radically “other,” Cumming insistently reminds us of the things we share in common.

This retrospective coincides with the publication of the Canadian Film Institute’s critical anthology, Splitting the Choir: The Moving Images of Donigan Cumming, edited by Scott Birdwise.

Donigan Cumming will be in attendance at the opening night of the retrospective/ book launch to introduce and discuss his work.

NOTE: The opening of the retrospective, Program I, takes place in Club SAW (67 Nicholas). Admission is pay-as-you-can.

Donigan Cumming  •  Canada
Friday, April 29, 2011, 7:30 pm, Club SAW
Donigan Cumming  •  Canada
Wednesday, May 11, 2011, 9:15 pm, Auditorium, 395 Wellington St.