MING Studios Art Film Series Debuts 

"It's a chance to see films you're not going to see—ever,"

Standing behind the small group assembled at Ming Studios on May 4, Development Director Teal Gardner announced that due to technical difficulties, there would be an interruption in the First Friday Films lineup, and though the delay would be only 15 minutes, she would "blame no one" if they left.

It was a comment on the strength of the films themselves that nobody did. First Friday Films sent up a trial balloon earlier this year when MING screened a reel-to-reel cut of the Soviet silent film, Mother, and despite the interruption, the May installment showcasing three female-directed art films fulfilled its mission to bring abstract, non-narrative and boutique movies to a Boise audience.

"The hope is to choose films that are a little bit more accessible," said Alex Hansen, who selected the shorts. "It's an introductory course in experimental film."

His choices reflected that ambition. "The Dragon is the Frame," by Mary Helena Clark, layered city sounds, images from YouTube videos and evocative shots, but provided little in the way of plot or character development. "Silk Tatters" by Gina Telaroli explored a mood through a handful of characters, and Jennifer Reeder's "A Million Miles Away" followed a substitute teacher who bonded with her wary students over a breakup via text message, and featured some extraordinary child acting.

Hansen said he chose the films because they represented a variety of styles and challenges to the audience, and reflect art concepts not often given full voice in commercial cinema.

For future installments in the First Friday Films series, MING and Hansen hope to make use of Canyon Cinema's 50 Film Tour: 43 16-millimeter films from the San Francisco, California-based collection that are being circulated in the U.S. and abroad through 2018.

"It's a chance to see films you're not going to see—ever," he said.

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