FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 20, 2017
VISUAL STUDIES WORKSHOP RECEIVES GRANT FROM THE NATIONAL FILM PRESERVATION FOUNDATION
Visual Studies Workshop has been awarded a prestigious Basic Preservation Grant from the National Film Preservation Foundation to preserve About Us, a 16mm film made in 1972 by VSW students and visiting artist Robert Frank. This 38 minute film was written, directed and edited collaboratively by Robert Frank and six students during a 3 month workshop at VSW.
For students and scholars of the history of contemporary photography and film, both VSW and the work of Robert Frank are crucially important areas of research. About Us is especially significant because it reflects the experimental and collaborative ethos upon which Visual Studies Workshop was founded, and provides insight into an alternative, non-hierarchical pedagogical model that has sustained influence for nearly five decades. This film is a one-of-a-kind document of VSW’s earliest days as a pioneering “non-institution” of higher learning, and a valuable link in the legacy of one of the world’s most influential artists, Robert Frank.
The NFPF helps archives, historical societies, libraries, museums, and universities preserve and make available American films that are not likely to survive without public support. Basic Preservation Grants are awarded to nonprofit and public institutions for laboratory work to preserve culturally and historically significant film materials. The grants are made possible by funds authorized through The Library of Congress Sound Recording and Film Preservation Programs Reauthorization Act of 2008 (P.L. 110-336) and secured through the leadership of the Library of Congress, and the contributions of public-spirited donors.
This is the first NFPF Basic Preservation Grant awarded to VSW. The funding will be used to create a preservation copy and an access copy of the film. Preservation lab work will be done at Colorlab in Rockville, MD.
Visual Studies Workshop’s mission is to support makers and interpreters of images through education, publications, exhibitions, and collections, and was founded in 1969 by photographer and curator Nathan Lyons. Collections at VSW include: Artist Books, Lantern Slides, Photographs, Manuscripts, Screenprints as well as more than 10,000 film and video titles.
Contact: Tara Merenda Nelson, Curator of Moving Image Collections
PUBLICITY IMAGE BELOW
Robert Frank and a student in a still from About Us (1972)
Robert Frank and a Kodak security guard, still from About Us (1972)
Still from About Us, 1972