About the Program

Decodings is named after Michael Wallin’s found-footage masterpiece, “a profoundly moving, allegorical search for identity from the documents of collective memory” (Manohla Dargis). The program begins with Duo Concertantes, a classic animation by one of Canyon’s earliest filmmakers, Lawrence Jordan, and Billabong, an underappreciated impressionistic documentary of a boys’ youth camp by another key Canyon figure, Will Hindle. Tom Palazzolo’s 1973 film, Love It/Leave It, offers a portrait of the USA that feels particularly relevant to our current political moment. Other works include Lie Back & Enjoy It, JoAnn Elam’s lucid examination of the representation of women in film; artist and filmmaker Cauleen Smith’s 1992 Chronicles of a Lying Spirit (by Kelly Gabron), an “exploration of the implications of the mediation of Black history by film, television, magazines and newspapers” (Scott MacDonald); and Naomi Uman’s classic 1999 found-footage film Removed, which deploys nail polish, bleach, and 1970s pornography to fashion a film where the female figure exists only as an empty, animated space.

Films in this Program

Duo Concertantes

Lawrence Jordan

“Jordan’s imagery is exquisite and eloquent, concentrating on simple, repeated use of particularly poetic symbols and figures…”

Rent from Canyon Cinema


Will Hindle

“Hindle has an uncanny talent for transforming spontaneous unstylized reality into unearthly poetic visions…” (Gene Youngblood)

Rent from Canyon Cinema

Love It/Leave It

Tom Palazzolo

Love It/Leave It is a raucous treatment of patriotic color, football, nudity and parades…’

Rent from Canyon Cinema


Naomi Uman

Using a piece of found European porn from the 1970s, nail polish and bleach, this film creates a new pornography, one in which the woman exists only as a hole, an empty, animated space.

Rent from Canyon Cinema

Chronicles of a Lying Spirit (by Kelly Gabron)

Cauleen Smith

Chronicles of a Lying Spirit (by Kelly Gabron) is less a depiction of ‘reality’ than an exploration of the implications of the mediation of Black history by film, television, magazines and newspapers.”

Rent from Canyon Cinema

Point de Gaze

Jodie Mack

Named after a type of Belgian lace, this fabric flicker film investigates intricate illusion and optical arrest.

Rent from Canyon Cinema

Encounters I May or May Not Have Had with Peter Berlin

Mariah Garnett

Encounters I May Or May Not Have Had With Peter Berlin deals primarily with monumentality, narcissism and the ways in which our heroes are embedded into our identities, and manifested through the body.

Rent from Canyon Cinema

Lie Back & Enjoy It

JoAnn Elam

“JoAnn Elam’s Lie Back and Enjoy It is an absorbing eight-minute dialectical film about the politics of representation…”

Rent from Canyon Cinema


Michael Wallin

“Michael Wallin’s Decodings is a profoundly moving, allegorical search for identity…” (Manohla Dargis)

Rent from Canyon Cinema


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