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This Is Film 2021 5 Bits and Pieces and the VJ

#5: Bits and Pieces and the VJ

This is Film! Film Heritage in Practice

For the fifth session of This is Film! Film Heritage in Practice, Italian VJ and Film Scholar Rossella Catanese will perform an audiovisual immersive VJ set, by mixing and manipulating Eye’s unique Bits&Pieces collection. She will be accompanied by electronic musician Jan Willem Hagenbeek.

poster This is Film! Film Heritage in Practice 2021
At the end of the ’80s, the Filmmuseum initiated a practice of archival film re-use by creating compilation reels of film fragments that could not be identified. This practice is still carried out today by the Filmmuseum’s curators and the collected film fragments, that otherwise might have been disregarded, from the Bits & Pieces collection: today containing 58 reels and 647 fragments.

Reuse of the Bits & Pieces Collection

Over the years, the Bits & Pieces collection came to be the source of many new compilations. Artists such as Fiona Tan, Peter Delpeut and Gustav Deutsch drew amply on this collection for their work.

Nowadays, digitization facilitates the use of single B&P fragments, and makes it easier to open the collection up to bigger audiences through several projects. An example of a recent initiative is Jan Bot, a computer programme that creates experimental films by using exclusively fragments from the B&P collection that match current trending topics. The films made by Jan Bot are daily published on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. In the past, the B&P collection has been used for projections within museum exhibitions or dance events and, currently, it is utilized to create compilations to be shown on hundreds of “urban screens” located at train stations in the Netherlands.


In conversation with Eye’s Chief Curator Giovanna Fossati, Rossella Catanese will make the audience part of her experiences as a VJ working with found footage material, discussing topics such as access to archival collections, and the unique character of a collection like Bits & Pieces.


Rossella Catanese is the author of the book Futurist Cinema. Studies on Italian Avant-garde Film (2017). She is a postdoc researcher in Film Studies at the University of Udine and adjunct professor at NYU Florence. She also regularly gives live performances as a VJ.

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145 min.

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#5: Bits and Pieces and the VJ

Part of

This is Film! 2021

This is Film! Film Heritage in Practice is a public lecture series devoted to notable projects in the fields of film restoration and film heritage. Under the overarching theme of recycling, re-using and remixing archival film(fragments), the series will showcase a broad range of creatively reused archival footage in different settings, addressing its relevance for audiences today.

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