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Filmmaker to produce new documentary on Buffalo architecture as part of UB’s Creative Arts Initiative

BUFFALO, N.Y. – Rima Yamazaki,
an independent documentary filmmaker specializing in contemporary
art and architecture, will be in residence at the University at
Buffalo Sept. 1 to Oct. 31 as part of the university’s Creative Arts Initiative
, producing a new documentary on Buffalo architecture.

Yamazaki’s residency is part of the program’s
ambitious and multidimensional schedule for 2017-18 that opened in
April with New York City-based composer Laura Kaminsky and virtual
artist Rebecca Allen and continued with Brazilian percussionist
Cyro Baptista in July, which included the unveiling of “Beat
Blossom,” Buffalo sculptor Shasti O’Leary
Soudant’s public art installation in the Percussion Garden of
Artpark, in Lewiston, New York.

In addition to Yamazaki, the 2017-18 schedule features digital
artists, writers, theater performers, painters, instrumentalists
and music producers.

Yamazaki is an internationally respected one-person film crew
who directs, films and edits all of her work. Her practice explores
cinematic expression in documenting, studying and reflecting on the

Her Buffalo project will not be a journalistic presentation but
will instead delve into Yamazaki’s personal observational

“I’d like to reveal something that cannot be
expressed in words,” she says. “This is to be a
cinematic study on the relationship between architecture, society
and people.”

Yamazaki’s Buffalo film will juxtapose shots of
architectural masterpieces and abandoned houses, preservation and

“Buffalo is a good example that embodies various aspects
of architecture,” she says. “Architecture can be a
treasure or a burden to a city. A building is a big expensive
thing, not only to build, but also to maintain. It’s not just
a place for people to live and work; it also reflects the society
and people’s lives.”

Yamazaki’s residency will include a screening of her 2010
film “Nakagin Capsule Tower: Japanese Metabolist
Landmark on the Edge of Destruction,” Wednesday, Sept. 13,
from 6-7:30 p.m. in room 403 of Hayes Hall on the
university’s South Campus. A discussion with Yamazaki and
Nicholas Bruscia, clinical assistant professor of architecture, who
leads UB’s study abroad program in Tokyo, will follow the
screening. This event is free and open to the public.

A screening of Yamazaki’s work-in-progress is also
planned, with the time and date to be determined.

The remaining CAI artists in residence for 2017-18 include:

  • Joshua Stein (Oct. 10-25 and March 3-26), the founder of
    Radical Craft and the co-director of the Data Clay Network, a forum
    for the exploration of digital techniques applied to ceramic
    materials. Radical Craft is a Los Angeles-based research and design
    studio operating between the fields of architecture, art and
    urbanism. Radical Craft advances design saturated in history (from
    archaeology to craft) that inflects the production of contemporary
    urban spaces and artifacts, evolving newly grounded approaches to
    the challenges posed by the virtual, velocity and globalization.
    Stein’s project aims to recover the history and repercussions
    of the dismantling of Buffalo’s streetcar system.
  • Olivier Pasquet, a sound, visual artist and music producer
    (Oct. 16-Nov. 19 and Jan. 22-Feb. 12). Olivier’s generative
    pieces are contextualized within a rationalist theory-fiction.
    Besides music and installation, he is also involved in performance
    pieces such as dance, theater and opera that have a strong
    relationship with architecture and design. His project involves the
    creation of a site-specific sound and light performance
    installation in the Greatbatch Pavilion at the Martin House.
  • Joshua Williams, director and translator; Deadria Harrington, a
    multifaceted theater artist based in New York City; and Khalil
    Sullivan, a singer-songwriter, guitarist, playwright and educator
    (Nov. 9-19). This creative team will conduct site-specific
    rehearsals and concert readings of a new musical in development
    about race and the 1901 Pan-American Exposition, titled “At
    Buffalo.” Race was on display at the 1901 Pan-American
    Exposition. In exhibits like “Darkest Africa,”
    “Old Plantation” and “The American Negro
    Exhibit,” concessionaires presented unique, and often
    conflicting, visions of race in America at the turn of the 20th
    century. These exhibits left behind a fragmented archive of
    descriptions, newspaper articles, photographs and film clips that
    shed new light on a critical moment in the construction of modern
    black and American identity. “At Buffalo,” a landmark
    new musical, brings this archive to life.
  • The Wooster Group, a company of artists who make work for
    theater, dance, and media. Their productions tour nationally and
    internationally (Feb. 4-11). The Wooster Group has received
    numerous BESSIE and OBIE Awards for individual productions and for
    sustained achievement. The Wooster Group’s CAI residency will
    include four performances, Feb. 8-11 at UB’s Center for the
    Arts, of THE B-SIDE: “Negro Folklore From Texas State
    Prisons” A Record Album Interpretation,” workshops, and
    public discussions at the Albright-Knox Art Gallery and the African
    American Cultural Center. The production was inspired by an album
    recorded, edited and annotated by Bruce Jackson in 1965 of work
    songs, blues, spirituals, preaching and toasts performed by the men
    of Texas’ segregated agricultural prison farm units. The
    songs are part of a tradition that ended when the prisons were
    integrated. In the performance, Eric Berryman channels the album
    (using an in-ear receiver), transmitting voices from the past into
    a theatrical space.
  • Bracha Lichtenberg Ettinger an Israeli-born painter,
    philosopher, psychoanalyst and writer who is considered to be a
    prominent figure among both the French painters’ and the Israeli
    arts scenes (April 7-May 19). Ettinger’s residency will
    center on an exhibition of her work at the UB Anderson Gallery with
    an associated catalogue featuring photographic reproductions of
    Ettinger’s work along with essays by prominent scholars in
    psychoanalysis and art history. She will also offer a public
    lecture and gallery talks.
  • Jaakko Kuusisto, internationally renowned violinist and
    composer (May 7-14). Kuusisto has performed with the Sydney,
    Adelaide and Melbourne orchestras, the Hannover NDR Orchestra and
    the Belgian Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, as well as most of the
    major Finnish orchestras. As a composer, his output includes
    chamber and vocal music, orchestral works, film music and operas.
    His CAI project will include rehearsals, public lectures and
    appearances. Kuusisto will also work with UB students while
    preparing for the New York premiere of a new trumpet concerto.

The CAI is a university-wide initiative dedicated to the
creation and production of new work upholding the highest artistic
standards of excellence and fostering a complementary atmosphere of
creative investigation and engagement among students, faculty,
visiting artists and the community.

Through its Artist-in-Residence program and its innovative,
interdisciplinary offerings for students, CAI is raising the
profile of UB and Buffalo in the world of artistic expression and
revitalizing the initiative’s proud tradition as a leader in
contemporary art.

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