Six new films from Lynne Sachs

Posted February 13th, 2019 in New Acquisitions, New Films, News / Events

Film essayist Lynne Sachs continues to work prolifically, with six new films now available, including Carolee, Barbara & Gunvor, a portrait of Schneeman, Hammer, and Nelson; The Washing Society, which documents labor in New York City laundromats; and Tip of My Tongue, a “collective distillation of our times” occasioned by the filmmaker’s 50th birthday. Digital files of all of Sachs’ films are also available for the first time; for a complete list of her films and all available formats, click here.


Carolee, Barbara, Gunvor (2018 | 8 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

From 2015 to 2017, Lynne Sachs visited with Carolee Schneemann, Barbara Hammer and Gunvor Nelson, three multi-faceted artists who have embraced the moving image throughout their lives. From Carolee’s 18th Century house in the woods of Upstate New York to Barbara’s West Village studio to Gunvor’s childhood village in Sweden, Lynne shoots film with each woman in the place where she finds grounding and spark.


The Washing Society (44 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

When you drop off a bag of dirty laundry, who’s doing the washing and folding? THE WASHING SOCIETY brings us into New York City laundromats and the experiences of the people who work there. Collaborating together for the first time, filmmaker Lynne Sachs and playwright Lizzie Olesker observe the disappearing public space of the neighborhood laundromat and the continual, intimate labor that happens there. Inspired by To #Joy My Freedom author Tera Hunter’s depiction of the 1881 organization of African-American laundresses in Atlanta, Sachs and Olesker’s film THE WASHING SOCIETY investigates the intersection of history, underpaid work, immigration, and the sheer math of doing laundry. Drawing on each other’s artistic practices, Sachs and Olesker present a stark yet poetic vision of those whose working lives often go unrecognized, turning a lens onto their hidden stories, which are often overlooked. Dirt, skin, lint, stains, money, and time are thematically interwoven into the very fabric of THE WASHING SOCIETY through interviews and observational moments. With original music by sound artist Stephen Vitiello, the film explores the slippery relationship between the real and the re-enacted with layers of dramatic dialogue and gestural choreography. The juxtaposition of narrative and documentary elements in THE WASHING SOCIETY creates a dream-like, yet hyper-real portrayal of a day in the life of a laundry worker, both past and present.


And Then We Marched (2017 | 3 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

Lynne shoots Super 8mm film of the Jan. 21 Women’s March in Washington, D.C. and intercuts this recent footage with archival material of early 20th Century Suffragists marching for the right to vote, 1960s antiwar activists and 1970s advocates for the Equal Rights Amendment. Microscope Gallery, Other Cinema, Workers Unite Film Festival.


Tip of My Tongue (2017 | 80 minutes | COLOR | SOUND)

“To mark her 50th birthday, filmmaker Lynne Sachs gathers a group of her contemporaries – all New Yorkers but originally hailing from all corners of the globe – for a weekend of recollection and reflection on the most life-altering personal, local, and international events of the past half-century, creating what Sachs calls ‘a collective distillation of our times.’ Interspersed with poetry and flashes of archival footage, this poignant reverie reveals how far beyond our control life is, and how far we can go despite this.” (Museum of Modern Art Premiere)


Day Residue (2016 | 3 minutes | COLOR | SILENT)

I spent a day with my mother and stepfather shooting Super 8mm film in my childhood home in Memphis. Sigmund Freud believed that that the instigation of a dream is often to be found in the events of the day preceding the dream, which he called the “day residue.” Filmoteca Español, Cine Doré, Madrid.


Viva and Felix (2015 | 10 minutes | BOTH | SILENT)

For the first three years of her twin niece’s and nephew’s lives, Lynne Sachs used her 16mm Bolex camera to film them growing up in New York City with two dads and a mom. The film ends with a Gay Pride Day embrace.