. Conversations at the Edge (CATE)

Elisabeth Subrin: Maria Schneider, 1983 and Shulie

Posted by | gfung | Posted on | March 21, 2024

Thursday, March 21, 6:00 p.m.

Join Elisabeth Surbin for a program of her stunning short films!

Elisabeth Subrin, Maria Schneider, 1983, 2022. Courtesy of the artist and Manifest Pictures.

In her acclaimed “speculative biographies,” filmmaker and SAIC alum Elisabeth Subrin (MFA 1995) explores the absences and erasures of women’s lives in the historic record. She presents two works, produced 26 years apart, that use reenactment to express the ways we continue to live with, in Subrin’s words, “the residues of the past.”

Presented in partnership with Video Data Bank.


Maria Schneider, 1983

2022, 25 minutes

Best Documentary Short Film, 2023 César Awards

“Subrin has made a provocative, unnerving document, difficult to forget.” —Tony Pipolo, Artforum

In Elisabeth Subrin’s latest film, actresses Manal Issa, Aïssa Maïga, and Isabel Sandoval recreate a 1983 French television interview with the iconic Maria Schneider. When asked about Shneider’s traumatic experience filming Last Tango in Paris with Bernardo Bertolucci and Marlon Brando, the actresses not only perform Schneider’s words and gestures, but inhabit them through their own identities. Together, they conjure all who have been silenced, before and after. (Adapted from the New York Film Festival.)


1997, 37 minutes

Elisabeth Subrin, Shulie, 1997. Courtesy of the artist and Video Data Bank.

“Shulie is… daring and revelatory… Subrin’s ideas are beautiful, and the movie is a thing of wonder.” —Richard Brody, The New Yorker

“A cinematic doppelganger without precedent.” —Mark MacElhatten, New York Film Festival

Subrin’s landmark film Shulie (1997) is a shot-by-shot reenactment of an unreleased 1967 documentary portrait of Shulamith Firestone, then a student at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, who, just a few years later, would go on to write her influential radical feminist treatise The Dialectic of Sex: The Case for Feminist Revolution. Through the film’s meticulous staging and performances, Subrin reflects on the ways Firestone’s experiences of gender, race, and class continue to echo today. 

1997–2022, USA / France, 62 minutes

In English and French with English subtitles / Format: DCP

Presented in partnership with Video Data Bank.

About the artist

Elisabeth Subrin is a New York–based award-winning director and artist. Her critically acclaimed films and video installations have been featured in numerous festivals and exhibitions internationally, including solo shows at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Film at Lincoln Center, New York; and the 2020 Viennale, Vienna. Subrin’s 2016 award-winning feature narrative, A Woman, a Part, premiered in competition at the International Rotterdam Film Festival and traveled to festivals throughout Europe, the United States, and Asia. It was released theatrically in 2017. Subrin’s The Listening Takes, her 2023 multi-channel video, sound, and sculptural installation, will open May 26, 2024 at Participant, INC in New York. Subrin is currently developing a feature-length biopic about Maria Schneider.


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