Aug 20, 2009

Sept 16 films at SVA Theater grand opening

Here's the word from the SVA

School of the Visual Arts Celebrates the Opening and Dedication of the SVA Theatre
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
333 West 23 Street
New York City

Following top-to-bottom renovations that transformed a former first-run movie house into a state-of-the-art facility for artist talks, film screenings and other cultural events, the School of Visual Arts (SVA) will celebrate the opening of the SVA Theatre on Wednesday, September 16, 2009. The theater’s new design is the work of world-renowned designer Milton Glaser and features what may be the city’s largest kinetic sculpture atop the theater’s marquee.

Glaser, who is best known as the creator of the “I♥NY” logo and co-founder of New Yorkmagazine, based his design for the 18-feet-high structure on Tatlin’s Tower, the iconic monument to the Russian Revolution proposed by visionary architect Vladimir Tatlin in 1920 and now considered one of the great objects of Russian Constructivism. Glaser’s colorful homage consists of three metal cylinders that sit atop the marquee and rotate at hourly intervals like an abstract timepiece. Expanding on the theme of time, the marquee is ringed by a zipper sign that will display quotations about the passage of time by historic figures from Albert Einstein to Ronald Reagan.

The opening festivities pay tribute to Tatlin and the artistic movements of the early 20th century with a program of film masterworks by Yakov Protazanov, Dziga Vertov, H.G. Wells, Fernand Leger and Man Ray. The screenings will take place from 12 - 5pm; admission is free and open to the public. The SVA Theatre is located at 333 West 23 Street in New York City.

There will be a presentation, dedication ceremony--featuring the lighting of the marquee sculpture--and reception for invited guests from 7 - 9:30pm. Press seats are available at 212.592.2010.

Film Screenings
Times are approximate.

Things to Come (William Cameron Menzies, 1936; 100 minutes)
One of the earliest science fiction films dealing with the then-future world of the late of the 20th Century, featuring a script on which H.G. Wells collaborated and dazzling Constructivist design.

Man with a Movie Camera (Dziga Vertov, 1929; 68 minutes)
Directed by the most famous realist filmmaker of his era, a silent heavily influenced by Soviet montage which presents a remarkable picture of everyday life in the newly-created Soviet state.

Aelita: Queen of Mars (Yakov Protazanov, 1927; 100 minutes)
A landmark early silent Soviet science-fiction film made in the Constructivist style, which tells the story of a Russian scientist who travels to Mars and aids in a workers revolution on the “Red” planet.

A selection of shorts by Fernand Leger and Man Ray
During the silent era, France produced a remarkable body of short experimental films which mirrored artistic movements of the time. Many were made by the same artists who led those movements and in the same spirit as the Soviet Constructivist films.

The SVA Theatre is a state-of-the-art facility for the presentation of lectures, film screenings and performances at the School of Visual Arts, New York. In addition to class meetings and cultural programs organized by the College, the theater hosts myriad events produced by cultural organizations and community groups whose work is consistent with the College’s mission. The 20,000-square-foot space houses two separate auditoriums, one with 480 seats and the other with 265, that are equipped with the latest in lighting, sound and projection capabilities.

School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York City is an established leader and innovator in the education of artists. From its inception in 1947, the faculty has been comprised of professionals working in the arts and art-related fields. SVA provides an environment that nurtures creativity, inventiveness and experimentation, enabling students to develop a strong sense of identity and a clear direction of purpose.

Media Contact: For more information, please contact Michael Grant, director of communication, at 212.592.2011 or e-mail