Director Angeline Gragasin created The Animals with an all female executive level production team: something that is oddly and sadly a rarity in the industry. Along with Gargasin (also lead actress) was Caitlin Doughty (writer) Rachel Wolther (producer), Meredith Zielke (DP), Meredith Ries (Production designer) and Abby Walton (Costume designer). Together they have successfully and triumphantly created a short film that I so yearn for; cinematically surreal yet not unsatisfyingly short, a well written script, engaging concept complimented with this mystifying, elongated and [hypnotizing] question mark that underlies the whole film and draws you in and challenges you to keep watching and figure out this perfectly quirky narrative. I want to tell you what this film is about in one of those fantastically well rounded sentences that sums up its style and intent, but for the life of me: describing The Animals would be like trying to describe the depth and beauty of a Rothko to someone totally unfamiliar with his work. Gragasin’s film is visceral and strangely moving in this uncomfortable, jarring kind of way, it’s absurdly beautiful in its execution and it’s the best short film you will see all week (or month, or year). Undeniably, though, after watching this film you may feel a little inquisitive, a little lost. Luckily we picked the brains and spoke to this wonder director cum actress cum total badass, Angeline Gragasin. Enjoy.
There are some really strange and lovely moments in this just-released short film from Angeline - I don’t know how much of this tale is a dream or an overdose or something else entirely; but there’s a lot of choices in mood and direction here that are very charming and very different.
Her pieces skew aesthetically toward deconstruction and disintegration, resulting in a colorful, bracing, and — above all — totally captivating body of work. Oil paintings will literally drip, twisted and burned like the ruinous aftermath of a car accident, and her sculptures are often tattered, bent, and riddled with bullet holes. In short, it’s a visual knock-out. See it in person: Altered States, a solo exhibition of her newest work, will be on display at Marlborough Gallery in New York City through May 5.
While The Archival Photographic Files of the University of Chicago offer an intriguing, general overview of the college campus in development, we couldn’t help but linger specifically over the section on women’s athletics. More than a just-for-fun slice of “now and then”-style Americana, the images are a reminder that women who defy stereotypes in order to pursue their passions are, more often than not, exactly like you and me: everyday ladies simply doing their thing. And we think that is really, really cool.
Jennifer Herrema is a busy lady. A founding member of alt-rock fave Royal Trux, she has since spent time writing, producing records for the likes of Palace Brothers and The Kills, and — why not?! — moonlighting as an occasional model and clothing designer. (It’s no secret that her personal style has pretty much defined every subsequent generation of lady rock star.) These days she can be found fronting the classic-rock-riffing band Black Bananas, formerly known as RTX, and churning out catchy, aptly named tracks like “Rad Times.” For lack of a more accurate descriptive, we think that’s pretty freakin’ rad.
(**editor’s note: say hello to newest contributor is GAGC, Cassie!**)
Got a Girl Crush On: The protagonists of sci-fi children’s novel Wollstonecraft
Their mystery-solving adventures may be a figment of author Jordan Stratford’s imagination, but the ladies who inspired their characters are all too real: Ada Byron, widely considered to be the world’s first computer programer, and noted English novelist Mary Shelley. Stratford describes his work as a “pro-math, pro-science, pro-history and pro-literature adventure novel for and about girls.” He also says he wants his nine-year-old daughter to grow up to “be a mad scientist and take over the world.” We approve on both counts.
Editions of the book can be pre-ordered on Kickstarter.