Project Description

Christopher Harris

Portrait of Christopher Harris

Radcliffe-FSC Fellow 2020-21

Christopher Harris makes films and video installations that read African-American historiography through the poetics and aesthetics of experimental cinema. In his work, he appropriates and alters archival films, photographs and audio through a variety of manual and photochemical processes, staged re-enactments and hybrid forms.

Harris holds an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. His screenings include a career retrospective at the Belo Horizonte International Short Film Festival (Brazil) and solo screenings at the Locarno Film Festival (Switzerland), Images Festival (Toronto), True/False Film Fest (Columbia, MO) and the Brakhage Center Symposium (Boulder, CO). He was a featured artist at the 2018 Flaherty Seminar and additional screenings include the Ann Arbor Film Festival, the International Film Festival Rotterdam, the VIENNALE-Vienna International Film Festival and the Edinburgh International Film Festival, among many others. Harris received the Media City Film Festival’s 2020 Chrysalis Fellowship; a 2019-20 Artist Residency Award from the Wexner Center for the Arts; and is the recipient of a 2015 Creative Capital grant.

FSC Works

Speaking in Tongues

Christopher Harris

Speaking in Tongues is a 16mm experimental film that analogizes the discourse of racialized criminality and the carceral apparatus, which surveils and delimits the movements of Black people’s bodies, with the conventions and mechanics of the cinematic apparatus which regulates and standardizes the movement of the filmstrip through the motion picture camera and projector. Equal parts essay and visual art, Speaking in Tongues embodies the cinematic Black ecstatic that simultaneously re-envisions resistance defiance in the face of anti-Black state violence and subverts the conventions of cinematic realism through a manually and optically altered collage of original documentary and archival film sourced from Hollywood movies, television commercials, educational films, cartoons, European art cinema and miscellaneous ephemera.

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