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Grant number: PG-252929-17

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Canyon Cinema Foundation (San Francisco, CA 94124-2653)
Seth Mitter (Project Director: May 2016 to present)

Preservation Assessment of Canyon Cinema Foundation’s Circulating Film and Historical Document Collections

The hiring of a preservation consultant to conduct a general preservation assessment of over 3,200 film titles spanning 90 years and including important documentary, animation, structural, personal, and experimental works representing over 250 artists.  The collection has a strong emphasis on American West Coast and San Francisco Bay Area filmmakers such as James Benning, Bruce Billie, Kenneth Anger, Marie Menken, and Les Blank.  Highlights include 470 reels of experimental filmmaker and teacher Stan Brakhage and 43 reels of anthropologist and ethnographic filmmaker Chick Strand, known for her animated and experimental documentaries focused on women in Mesoamerican cultures.

Canyon Cinema Foundation’s (CCF) collections of film and related paper material represent 90 years of independent, artist-made film history. CCF’s loan program for its circulating film print collection (over 3200 reels) supports programming and exhibition by educational and cultural institutions across the globe. CCF’s collections of historical documents are important to researchers studying the history and culture of independent filmmaking. We are seeking funds to hire a professional preservation consultant to complete a general preservation assessment and the purchase of archival supplies to house the objects that are most at risk. This project is the necessary first step towards the proper storage, care, and management for our collections of motion picture film, periodicals, and documents. Current storage conditions of both the film print collection and paper and ephemera collections risks accelerating the decay of these historically significant objects.

Project fields:
Cultural History; Film History and Criticism; Media Studies

Preservation Assistance Grants

Preservation and Access

Total amounts:
$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2017 – 6/30/2018