Feb 17, 2014

latest draft: Bios of the speakers speaking at the 9th Orphan Film Symposium

of some of the speakers speaking at the 9th Orphan Film Symposium, March 30 - April 2, 2014:


Matt Soar keeps taking left turns. Having just completed a first degree in housebuilding, in 1989 he ran away from the English village of Attenborough to art school in London, landing a job as an art director/designer working for a company specializing in motion-based point-of-purchase devices. Four years later he escaped to Vancouver BC, volunteering for Greenpeace and Adbusters, only to discover that to avoid having to go back to England he had to become a student. Walking backwards into grad school, Soar earned an MA at Simon Fraser University and, ultimately, a PhD at UMass Amherst [Dissertation: Graphic Design/Graphic Dissent, 2002]. During this time he co-parented two babies, worked as the in-house designer for the Media Education Foundation, and  taught for two years at Hampshire College. In 2003 he was hired to teach ‘digital multimedia’ at Concordia University in Montreal. Finding himself increasingly disillusioned and exhausted by the vagaries of the digital imperative, Soar applied to spend a week at Phil Hoffman’s Film Farm in Ontario, which radically transformed his approach to making, teaching, and writing. On his second visit to the Farm, he began his Lost Leaders film project. Matt Soar is currently associate professor and BA program director in the Department of Communication Studies at Concordia, as well as co-director of development for the Korsakow System, a software application for digital nonlinear storytelling. This is his first Orphan Film Symposium. mattsoar.org.

Chris Wahl was born and raised in the Federal Republic of (West) Germany. The Wall came down when he was 15 years old. Today he tries to understand how life was in the former German Democratic Republic by studying amateur footage from East German collectives. Since June 2013 Wahl olds a  Heisenberg Endowed Professorship for the Audiovisual Heritage at the Film and Television University "Konrad Wolf" in Potsdam-Babelsberg. Together with Jürgen Keiper (Deutsche Kinemathek, Berlin) he runs the German-language blog www.memento-movie.de, the main attractions of which are video interviews with people whose work and/or life is related to film heritage.

 Dan Streible directs the Orphan Film Symposium and its companion research and curatorial projects. In 2013 he published a short history of the symposium in Film Festival Yearbook 5: Archival Film Festivals (St. Andrews Film Studies), the entry “Orphan Films” for Oxford Bibliographies Online, and “Moving Image History and the F Word; or, ‘Digital Film’ Is an Oxymoron,” in the journal Film History. An associate professor of cinema studies at NYU, he is also associate director of its Moving Image Archiving and Preservation master’s degree program. From 1997 to 2006 Streible taught film studies at the University of South Carolina, where he co-organized five symposia on orphan films with faculty colleagues Susan Courtney, Laura Kissel, and Julie Hubbert. @Orphan_Films + orphanfilmsymposium.blogspot.com + www.nyu.edu/orphanfilm

Elif Rongen-Kaynakçi is Curator of Silent Film at EYE. After completing her BA in English Literature at the Bosphorus University in Istanbul (in contemporary American literature) and her MA at the University of Amsterdam/Film Studies (focusing on national film histories), she has moved into the field of film archiving through the EU-funded Archimedia Project from 1997 onwards. She has been employed at EYE/Filmmuseum since 1999. Her particular area of interest within the archive concerns the re-evaluation of the lost, obscure and forgotten areas of film history. She has been involved in the discovery and restoration of formerly lost films starring Rudolph Valentino (Beyond the Rocks, 1922), Mabel Normand, Sessue Hayakawa, Olive Thomas, Mary Miles Minter, and many others.

Giovanna Fossati is the Chief Curator of EYE Film Institute Netherlands since 2009. She has recently been appointed Professor Film Heritage and Digital Film Culture at the University of Amsterdam where she teaches in the MA Preservation & Presentation of the Moving Image since 2003. Her main areas of specialization and research are the digitization of cinema and film heritage, theory of film archiving and restoration, and color in silent cinema. Her recent publications include “Multiple Originals: the (Digital) Restoration and Exhibition of Early Films,” in A Companion to Early Cinema, edited by André Gaudreault, Nicolas Dulac and Santiago Hidalgo (Wiley-Blackwell, 2012) and the book Found Footage: Cinema Exposed, with Marente Bloemheuvel and Jaap Guldemond (Amsterdam University Press, 2012). The second edition of her book From Grain to Pixel. The Archival Life of Film in Transition was published by Amsterdam University Press in 2011. This is her first Orphan Film Symposium.

Frank Roumen became the Director of Collections at EYE Filmmuseum in 2013.He started his career at the Nederlands Filmmuseum in 1988, working in the educational and programming departments. For twenty years Roumen has created film, television, and musical theater productions that feature archival material. His many credits include the Dutch public television series Cinema Perdu (1995) and En hoe nu verder? [And What Now?] (2000]. He has produced feature-length artists’ films, such as Peter Delpeut’s Diva Dolorosa (1999) and Gustav Deutsch’s Welt Spiegel Kino (2005). With Nico de Klerk, Roumen directed Tabee, a 2002 found footage production about the Dutch East Indies. In 2011 he moved to the collection side of EYE. For the opening of the EYE building in 2012, Roumen selected images for Panorama, a permanent exhibition in The Basement. For children he created Around the World in 50 Minutes, a special show with live music, theater, games, and archival footage celebrating the opening of the building.

Reto Kromer became involved in audio-visual conservation and restoration as early as 1986. From 1998 to 2003 he was head of preservation at the Swiss Film Archive, in charge of cataloguing, conservation, and restoration of the film collection. Since 2004 he has been running his own preservation company (http://reto.ch). He is currently a lecturer at the University of Lausanne, the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, and the Bern University of Applied Sciences. His courses cover conservation and restoration, usually with a focus on motion-picture film and technical issues. He is also on AMIA’s Board of Directors. Twitter: @retoch

Bill Morrison‘s films often combine rare archival material set to contemporary music. To this end, he has collaborated with some of the most influential composers of our time, including John Adams, Laurie Anderson, Gavin Bryars, Dave Douglas, Richard Einhorn, Philip Glass, Michael Gordon, Henryk Gørecki, Bill Frisell, Vijay Iyer, Jóhann Jóhannsson, David Lang, Steve Reich, and Julia Wolfe. Morrison has presented work in nearly every Orphan Film Symposium, dating back to its origin in 1999. His All Vows, a collaboration with cellist Maya Beiser, premiered at Indiana University’s Orphans Midwest: Materiality and the Moving Image in 2013. He is perhaps still best known for Decasia (2002), his collaboration with the composer Michael Gordon, which was named to the US Library of Congress’ 2013 National Film Registry. Morrison's films are also in the collection of the Museum of Modern Art, Walker Art Center, and EYE. He is a Guggenheim fellow and has received the Alpert Award for the Arts, an NEA Creativity Grant, Creative Capital, and a fellowship from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. His theatrical projection design has been recognized with two Bessie awards and an Obie Award. In 2014, his feature The Great Flood opened theatrically in the US, and The Miners' Hymns (2011) toured with live musical performances in the US, NL, and UK. In April 2014, Bill will premiere Beyond Zero 1914-1918, a collaboration with composer Aleksandra Vrebalov and the Kronos Quartet, at Cal Performances in Berkeley, California. Morrison will have a mid-career retrospective at New York’s Museum of Modern Art in October-November 2014. billmorrisonfilm.com.

Martin Koerber (b. 1956) has been Curator of the film archive at Deutsche Kinemathek - Museum für Film und Fernsehen since 2007, and a professor for the restoration of photography and audiovisual heritage at Hochschule für Technik und Wirtschaft [University of Applied Sciences], Berlin, since 2003. After studies in media, art history, and musicology at Freie Universität Berlin, he worked odd jobs on a variety of experimental and documentary films during the 1980s. Before joining the Kinemathek’s permanent staff in 1998, Koerber did free-lance projects for the Nederlands Filmmuseum and other archives. From 1995 to 2003, he organized retrospectives for the Berlin Film Festival. Recognized as one of the world’s preeminent restorationists, Koerber has restored many films, including Fritz Lang’s M, Testament des Dr. Mabuse, and Metropolis, as well as silent-era classics such as Die Büchse der Pandora, Die weiße Hölle vom Piz Palü, and Menschen am Sonntag (which he described as “the saddest movie in the world”). See also: • Ana Trkulja, “Interview mit Martin Koerber - Filmrestauration,” Nov. 8, 2009: youtube.com/watch?v=5kGIp5jcnrU. In German. Video. • Andreas Busche, “Digitization and the Deutsche Kinemathek: An Interview with Martin Koerber,” Goethe Institut, March 2013. http://www.goethe.de/kue/flm/fmg/en10740851.htm. • Origin, “Martin Koerber 10.08.13. A Night Cap with Fritz Lang.” Waldorf Astoria’s Unforgettable Stories series. https://vimeo.com/76474728. In English. Video.

Thomas Elsaesser <www.thomas-elsaesser.com> is Professor Emeritus at the Department of Media and Culture of the University of Amsterdam and since 2013 Visiting Professor at Columbia University. He has authored, edited, and co-edited some 20 volumes on Early Cinema, Film Theory, German and European cinema, Hollywood, New Media, and Installation Art. Among his recent books are the Routledge publications Film Theory: An Introduction through the Senses (with Malte Hagener, 2010), The Persistence of Hollywood (2012), and German Cinema - Terror and Trauma: Cultural Memory since 1945 (2013). In 2005 he founded UvA’s master’s program in Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image. His estimable career is well detailed at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Elsaesser.

Scott Curtis, Associate Professor of Radio/Television/Film at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois, is currently Director of the Communication Program at Northwestern's campus in Doha, Qatar. has worn many hats, including that of an archivist, a medical photographer, and a film curator. Curtis has published on a wide range of topics, from early German cinema or animation theory to scientific filmmaking or classical American silent cinema. He is currently the president of Domitor, the international society for the study of early cinema, for which he is collaborating with the Media History Digital Library and the Media Ecology Project to bring early cinema scholars and scholarship into the twenty-first century.

Yvonne Zimmermann is Professor of Media Studies at Philipps University Marburg (Germany). From 2011 to 2013, she was a visiting scholar at New York University, where she researched Hans Richter’s exile in Switzerland (1937-1941) and the transatlantic exchange of film culture. She holds a PhD from the University of Zurich and was a guest professor at the University Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3. She is the author of Bergführer Lorenz: Karriere eines missglückten Films (2005) and editor and co-author of Schaufenster Schweiz: Dokumentarische Gebrauchsfilme 1896-1964 (2011). She has published widely on industrial film, “useful cinema,” and nontheatrical exhibition. At the 2012 Orphan Film Symposium in New York, she presented Hans Richter’s 1939 film The Stock Exchange / Die Börse al Barometer der Wirtschaftslage.

Werner Nekes is one of the most noted international experimental filmmakers. In 1965 he started his career with his film Tom Doyle and Eva Hesse. He founded the German Film Coop, directed German student film clubs, and founded the first German student film festival in Mannheim. In 1969 he was appointed to the Professorship for Film and Media in Hamburg. Since then he taught at universities and film and media schools in Bochum, Wuppertal, Offenbach, Cologne and given lectures in many countries. To date Nekes has made some 100 experimental films. Many of them received international film prizes. His best known films are Uliisses, a 1982 experimental feature film, and the six-part-series Media Magica (1986-2004) about his collection apparatuses and ephemera. In the 1970s Werner Nekes began collecting optical devices and media literature. Today his collection on media archaeology comprises more than 35,000 items and has been exhibited from London to Melbourne, Los Angeles to Tokyo. He is the recipient of the 2014 Helen Hill Award conferred by the Orphan Film Symposium.

Jodie Mack, an experimental animator, received her MFA in film, video, and new media from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2007 and currently teaches animation at Dartmouth College. Her most recent works include Dusty Stacks of Mom: The Poster Project and Let Your Light Shine (2013). Combining the formal techniques and structures of abstract/absolute animation with those of cinematic genres, her handmade films use collage to explore the relationship between graphic cinema and storytelling, the tension between form and meaning. Musical documentary or stroboscopic archive: her films study domestic and recycled materials to illuminate the elements shared between fine-art abstraction and mass-produced graphic design. Questioning the role of decoration in daily life, the works unleash the kinetic energy of overlooked and wasted objects. She received the Orphan Film Symposium’s Helen Hill Award in 2010.  www.jodiemack.com & vimeo.com/jodiemack

Ned Thanhouser is the grandson of silent film pioneers Gertrude and Edwin Thanhouser and is president of Thanhouser Company Film Preservation, Inc. Since 1986, he has been actively involved in the research, acquisition, preservation, and publication of the history, surviving films, and related ephemera from the Thanhouser studio that operated in New Rochelle, New York from 1909 to 1918.  He has presented and published research papers at SCMS conferences (London 2005, Chicago 2013), the AMIA Journal The Moving Image (2011), the Women and the Silent Screen conference (Guadalajara 2006), and the Domitor conference (Brighton UK 2012). He is also co-founder and vice-president of the International Youth Silent Film Festival which organizes competitions for filmmakers age 20 and under to create modern versions of silent films. Working with film archives and private collectors, Mr. Thanhouser has produced fourteen DVD titles containing 57 surviving Thanhouser films not seen by the public for over 100 years. These are available on DVD and online at no charge to researchers, scholars, and film lovers at www.thanhouser.org.

Benedict Salazar Olgado is an adjunct faculty at the College of Mass Communication and the School of Library and Information Studies of the University of the Philippines, Diliman, wherein he teaches film history and audiovisual archiving. He was the inaugural head of the
National Film Archives of the Philippines from 2012 to 2014 and now serves as a senior consultant overseeing its restoration projects. He received his MA in Moving Image Archiving and Preservation at New York University and prior to grad school, worked for the Southeast Asia Pacific Audiovisual Archives Association as its senior administrator. In 2011, as one of the leading young archivists in the field, he was named the AMIA Kodak Fellow in Film Preservation. He hopes to bring Orphans in Asia, or at least bring more of Asia in Orphans, in the next few years.

Jiří Horníček has worked in the Film Curators Department of the National Film Archive in Prague (http://www.nfa.cz/en/) since 1999. He cares for the collection of Czech amateur films, including amateur conceptual works (feature, documentary and animated films) and home movies. His professional specialization is the history of nontheatrical cinema within the territory of Czech Republic, especially the organization of the amateur film movement, development of technical equipment, and the influence of government institutions on amateur film activities. He collaborates with organizers of film festivals (Orphan Film Symposium, International Documentary Film Festival Jihlava, etc.) on the screenings of Czech amateur films. He  is a 2001 graduate of the Film Studies Department at  Charles University in Prague. (Listen to his Orphans 7 presentation.)

Walter Forsberg is a time-based medium. Born in a Saskatchewan funeral home, he works to resurrect dead media as an artist and archivist. His past media preservation projects included collaborations with artist Cory Arcangel and Bell Labs scientist Béla Julesz. His movies have screened at places such as Sundance, TIFF, Rotterdam, DOXA, Anthology Film Archives, the Academy, and others. Walter compiled and designed the monograph Starvation Years: Album de l’Atelier national du Manitoba 2005-2008, a history of the Winnipeg art collective, published in 2014. He is a contributing editor at INCITE Journal of Experimental Media, for which you should probably obtain an institutional subscription.

Eef Masson is an assistant professor in the Media Studies department of the University of Amsterdam. After a few years as a film restorer and project leader at the then Nederlands Filmmuseum, she moved to Utrecht University, where she wrote a PhD thesis on classroom films -- resulting in the book Watch and Learn: Rhetorical Devices in Classroom Films after 1940 (Amsterdam University Press, 2012). It was this research that first brought her to an Orphan Film Symposium (Orphans 5, at the University of South Carolina in 2006). At the University of Amsterdam, she teaches courses for the MA program in Heritage Studies: Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image and the MA in Film Studies. Her research deals with a variety of nontheatrical media. (Listen to her presentation with Claudy Op den Kamp: http://www.sc.edu/filmsymposium/Orphans_Sound/mp3/masson.MP3.)

Evan Meaney is an American-born filmmaker and new media artist. His practices explore liminalities and glitches of all kinds, equating failing data and broken code to ghosts, seances, and archival hauntology. He has been an artist in residence at the Wexner Center for the Arts, a founding member of the international GLI.TC/H conference, and a contributor to The Atlantic. For the past several years, Evan has worked with members of the supercomputing team at Oak Ridge National Laboratory on technology-based art endeavors funded through the National Science Foundation. Since 2010, his time-based artwork has been available through the Video Data Bank in Chicago. Currently, Evan is a member of the Media Arts faculty at the University of South Carolina. www.evanmeaney.com  @glitchbot01

Alexandra Schneider is Associate Professor and Coordinator of the Film Studies program at the Media Studies Department, University of Amsterdam. After completing her PhD at the University of Zurich she was an Assistant Professor of Film Studies at the Freie Universität Berlin. Her research interests range from home movies, media archaeology, to cinema and globalization, commercial Hindi cinema and the media practice of children. Most recently she has co-edited a special issue of the online journal Necsus about Waste (Autumn 2013). Her work has been published in Visual Anthropology, Film History, Projections, and Montage/av.

Stephen Horne has long been considered one of the leading silent film accompanists. Based at London's BFI Southbank, but playing at all the major UK venues, he has recorded music for DVD releases, BBC TV screenings, and museum installations of silent films. Although principally a pianist, he often incorporates flute, accordion, and keyboards into his performances, sometimes simultaneously. In recent years his accompaniments have met with acclaim at film festivals in Pordenone, Telluride, San Francisco, Cannes, Bologna, and Berlin. In 2011 and 2012, he was commissioned to compose ensemble scores for the London Film Festival Archive Galas of The First Born (1928) and Hitchcock’s The Manxman (1929). The Orphans 8 DVD, Made to Persuade, includes his piano accompaniment for a reel from the restored Die Hochbahnkatastrophe (1921).  Stephen occasionally collaborates with a small group which recreates magic lantern shows. He is also a specialist in dance accompaniment and plays regularly at the London dance academies. He also writes screenplays, and his short film Fatherspace was shown on Channel 4 and at the London Film Festival. www.stephenhorne.co.uk

Ralf Forster, PhD, is a film historian at Filmmuseum Potsdam and and a lecturer at universities. He is member of the project “Regional Film Culture in Brandenburg” at the University of Film and Television Potsdam-Babelsberg. He collects vintage movies and presents them in public performances. He is also on the Board of DIAF, the German Institute for Animated Film. His publications range in subject from film commercials in Nazi Germany (his PhD thesis), amateur and home movies, early sound films, animation, and motion picture technology.

Thomas Christensen shares his last name with many great Danish filmmakers. He signed on as curator with the Danish Film Institute in 1998. He probably got this job because he went to school at the University of Copenhagen and University of Wisconsin-Madison many years ago. Though film heritage sometimes gets the step-motherly treatment, many exiting projects have come his way in the past 15 years. Among them EFG1914 and www.europeanfilmgateway.eu, as well as the current “TELL IT WITH FILM,” which is all about setting the archive’s babies/films free through embedding solutions, allowing others to use the material directly in local interactions and projects. Each pin on the map represents an historic film: http://tinyurl.com/TellItWithFilm. He is currently involved in the EU project FORWARD, which is about identifying European orphan films and putting them on an orphan film list maintained by the European Trade Mark Office in Alicante, Spain. See more of his work here:
• Danish Film Database: www.dfi.dk/Service/English/Films-and-industry/Factsheet.aspx?ss_hasmedia=1&v=advanced
• Photos from the Film Museum: Flickr.com/photos/36461985@N08/sets
• 230 videos from DFI: Europeanfilmgateway.eu/node/33/dfi%20efg1914/multilingual:1/showOnly:video
• Danish Silent Film Classics on DVD: http://shop.dfi.dk/shop/danske-stumfilmsklassikere-14c1.html.
Thomas C. Christensen earned an M.A. in film studies from the University of Copenhagen. After teaching film history, analysis, and production there and at the University of Aarhus, he was appointed Curator at the Danish Film Institute in 1998. His main areas of responsibility are acquisition, preservation, and restoration of Danish cinema. He has supervised several full digital intermediate restorations and a series of DVD publications. In 2002-2004, he was involved in the EU project FIRST on behalf of the Association des Cinémathèques Européennes (ACE). Since 2003 he has served on the FIAF Technical Commission. In 2007 he finished a two-year project on the lost films of Danish actress Asta Nielsen. In 2010 he was elected Secretary General of the ACE Executive Committee.

Jacqueline Stewart is Professor in the Department of Cinema and Media Studies at the University of Chicago. She has pursued her interest to preserve African American film and video with studies at UCLA and FIAF Summer School in Bologna. She is co-curator of the L.A. Rebellion Preservation Project at the UCLA Film and Television Archive, and is co-editing a collection of new essays on the movement, Emancipating the Image: The L.A. Rebellion of Black Filmmakers (University of California Press). She directs the South Side Home Movie Project in Chicago, and serves on the National Film Preservation Board and the Board of Directors of the Association of Moving Image Archivists. She is the author of Migrating to the Movies: Cinema and Black Urban Modernity (University of California Press, 2005), and her essays have appeared in journals including Critical Inquiry, Film Quarterly, Film History, and The Moving Image. She is currently researching the racial politics of moving image preservation, and completing a study of the life and work of African American actor/writer/director Spencer Williams.

Joseph Wachelder is an associate professor for the history of science, technology, and media at Maastricht University. His research focuses on technologies and instruments that cross the borders between professionals and amateurs. He participates in the research project Technologies of Memory and the Cultural Dynamics of Home Movies. Wachelder has a special interest in toys that mediate among scientific research, instruction, and amusement. His work on pre-cinema history (e.g. the phenakistiscope) testifies to this. See also  http://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/web/Profile/jo.wachelder.htm#researchpublications.

 Howard Besser is Director of NYU's Moving Image Archiving and Preservation Program. He has written extensively about copyright, and is a co-author of The Digital Dilemma: Intellectual Property in the Information Age (2000), the U.S. National Research Council's study of the implications of information age technology on intellectual property. He was also a co-founder of the American Library Association's Information Commons Initiative Group, which focused on how intellectual property laws impeded the building of a true commons of information. He is currently teaching a course on Free Culture and Open Access. http://besser.tsoa.nyu.edu/howard.

Andi Lubonja joined the Albanian National Film Archive in 1998 and currently is in charge of its Technical, Restoration, and Digitization Sector. His expertise includes transferring 35mm film into digital formats and taking care of the systems and conditions of the storage rooms. He has received professional training at the Istituto Luce Cinecittà in Italy, France’s Institut national de l’audiovisuel, and elsewhere.

May Haduong is the Public Access Manager at the Academy Film Archive, where she oversees access to the Archive’s collection. With Dan Streible, Haduong co-curated The Real Indies: A Close Look at Orphan Films at the Academy in 2013. Prior to serving at the Academy Film Archive, she was the Project Manager for the Outfest UCLA Legacy Project, a collaboration between the UCLA Film & Television Archive and Outfest, which produces the Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival. She currently serves on the Legacy Project Advisory Committee.

Snowden Becker’s interest in home movies and amateur film has endured through two graduate degrees, six Orphans events, a dozen Home Movie Days, and all forty-one seconds of her own Super8 hand-drawn animation film, created in 1984 and rediscovered by her parents in 2010. In 2005, she co-founded the nonprofit Center for Home Movies, and has served as Secretary of the Board of the Association of Moving Image Archivists since 2012. She now manages UCLA's Moving Image Archive Studies MA degree program (http://mias.gseis.ucla.edu; Twitter: @UCLAmias), where she teaches graduate courses on archival administration and preservation of heritage materials. When she's not working on the last chapters of her dissertation on archival aspects of audiovisual evidence management practice in law enforcement agencies, she's usually knitting something.

Dennis Doros with his wife and partner, Amy Heller, started Milestone Film & Video (www.milestonefilms.com) in 1990 to discover and distribute films of enduring artistry. Milestone specializes in films outside the canon, which they call “outsider art films,” including Charles Burnett’s Killer of Sheep, Kent Mackenzie’s The Exiles, and Lionel Rogosin’s On the Bowery. Doros has been working on “Project Shirley,” the preservation and release of the films and ephemera of director Shirley Clarke since 2008, including her feature films The Connection, Ornette: Made in America, and Portrait Of Jason. Doros is currently serving his third term on the Board of Directors of the Association of Moving Image Archivists and has been a consultant to Turner Classic Movies since 2005. You can find Milestone on Facebook and Twitter.

Franziska Latell (M.A.) studied media and communication with Enno Patalas and Siegfried Zielinski at the Berlin University of Arts. In her prize-winning master’s thesis she discussed the concept of the “original” of film. She currently writes her dissertation about the collection of Werner Nekes. In addition, she works as a project director at the Academy of Arts and as a freelance research associate at Bauhaus-Archiv / Museum für Gestaltung. Past projects and publications for Deutsche Kinemathek, The Film Foundation, and Berlin University of Arts include: “DVD Study Edition of Metropolis” (research assistance),  “Variantology” (research assistance), “Fritz Langs Metropolis” (co-editor and author), “The Making of F.W. Murnau’s Tabu: The Outtakes Edition” (research associate), “Provoking Reality – The Oberhausen Manifesto” (research associate, Cinema Ritrovato DVD Award / Best Rediscoveries, 2012; nomination Willy-Haas-Award, 2012).

Elvira Diamanti has served as the Director of the Albanian Film Archive since 2009. She has lectured for several years at the Albanian Academy of Arts and at the Marubi Academy of Film and Multimedia. Elvira has served on several international film festival juries, including the Biarritz Film Festival and the Tirana International Film Festival. She also chairs the projects council for the Albanian Center of Cinematography. From 2002 to 2007 she served as Director of the Albanian National Puppet Theater. She completed her studies in dramaturgy at the Arts Institute of Tirana in 1985, and became a principal actress in the Albanian National Theatre that same year. She was awarded second prize at the 1987 Albanian National Film Festival for her portrayal of Marigo in the film Tale from the Past (Dhimiter Anagnosti, 1987). Elvira’s first acting role was for the Albanian cinema when she was very young, and she has maintained her love for and dedication to Albanian cinema since that time.

Eriona Vyshka joined the staff of the Albanian Film Archive in 2001. In 2006, she was appointed Head of the collection and cataloguing office. Eriona has edited several catalogues and periodicals published by the Albanian Film Archive. She also worked on several editions of AKT, an Albanian journal of media criticism. She has collaborated with the Albanian National Film Center and served as the Albanian representative to the Southeast European Cinema meetings, an international cinema network that the Albanian National Film Center joined in 2003. Eriona represents the archives at several important Albanian film festivals including those in Tirana and Durres. Eriona holds an MA in Literature from Tirana University and her research is focused on the adaptation process from novel into film. She also published several articles on this topic, including one in Anthropology Journal (OMICS Publishing). Eriona serves as the liaison, principal translator, and project coordinator between the Albanian Film Archive and the Albanian Cinema Project.

Charles Musser is a professor of Film and Media Studies at Yale University. His 72-minute documentary Errol Morris: A Lightning Sketch recently premiered at the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. He has published extensively on early cinema including Before the Nickelodeon: Edwin S. Porter and the Edison Manufacturing Company (1991). He is currently on leave and finishing a book Media Shifts and US Presidential Elections: Stereopticon/Cinema/Television /Internet. Working with Dan Streible and the Orphan Film Symposium, he has been engaged in a long-term project to reclaim the forgotten productions of Union Films, a New York-based production company active between 1946 and 1953. Orphans 6 through 8 respectively featured the 1948 films People’s Congressman, The Investigators, and A People’s Convention. This year it is Industry’s Disinherited (1949). Charles Musser can be followed on his website www.charlesmusser.com.

Heidi Rae Cooley is Assistant Professor of Media Arts in the Department of Art and the Film and Media Studies Program at the University of South Carolina. A theorist of new media technologies, she premiered Scott Nixon’s The Augustas at the Orphan Film Symposium in 2010. Scott Nixon, independent traveling insurance agent and avid amateur filmmaker, serves as the historical source for the trope -- the traveling salesman -- governing her recently published book, Finding Augusta: Habits of Mobility and Governance in the Digital Era (Dartmouth College Press, March 2014). Augusta App (www.findaugusta.com), the book’s digital iPhone supplement, functions as a handheld laboratory for exploring the book’s argument about finding and tracking in the mobile present.

Paul C. Spehr is retired from the Library of Congress where he was the Assistant Chief of the Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division. Since retiring he has continued his interest in saving our film heritage and his articles and participation in symposia has contributed to the revived interest in the beginning years of film history. He is the compiler/author of American Film Personnel and Company Credits, 1908-1920 (McFarland, 1996), which indexes the 35,000 plus films listed in Lauritzen & Lundquist’s American Film Index, 1909-1915 and 1916-1920. He is also the author of The Movies Begin (Newark Museum, 1977) and The Man Who Made Movies: W. K. L. Dickson (John Libbey Publishing, 2008). Mr. Dickson was Thomas Edison’s assistant in the invention of the Kinetoscope and Kinetograph, the first commercially successful motion picture devices, a founding partner of the American Mutoscope Company, and important pioneer filmmaker who directed more than 500 films between 1890 and 1903. Spehr is on the board of Thanhouser Company Film Preservation, Inc., the editorial board for the journal Film History, and Albanian Cinema Project Advisory Board.

Mary Huelsbeck has been the Assistant Director of the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research (WCFTR http://wcftr.commarts.wisc.edu) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison since March 2012. She holds master’s degrees in History and Library Science from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and has almost twenty years of experience managing film, videotape, audio, photograph, manuscript, and three-dimensional object collections. Ms. Huelsbeck and the WCFTR have been thrilled to work with Milestone Films to preserve and (re)introduce the work of Shirley Clarke to the world. She is currently working with the Bay Area Video Coalition to preserve more of Shirley’s early video works. This is her first Orphan Film Symposium.

. . . and more to come.