It is no surprise that Nara Denning was dubbed the Bay Area’s “Best New Silent Filmmaker” in 2009. We are thrilled to be able to showcase her black and white shorts at ShinyArt.
Watching part of Denning’s Neurotique cycle on the ShinyArt site is visually reminiscent of the dark, eeriness of Nosferatu, minus the creepy content and plus a colossal hula dancer. There are all the elements here of a surreal dream you possibly had after watching an archival episode of Fantasy Island: a South Pacific paradise, a Peter Parker-esque photographer in a fake Tilly hat, and an Island goddess complete with kitchy lei and maniacal laughter.
I like how SF Weekly describes Denning’s talents as, “…a real gift for storytelling and some tech genius. …Shadows and reflections are specialties, often digitally enhanced but never corny. She’s obviously a fan of German Expressionism, but not a servant of it – we like the way she plays with intertitles. She also draws from an interesting pool of local talent, notably composer Stoo Odom, whose original scores help hold her silent narratives together.” – SF Weekly, 2009
We love how Neurotique bravely grafts a campy aesthetic onto a technically stunning composition. Welcome Nara!