Screening Seminars

What makes the CMI different from other programs is its singular, cross-medium approach to the craft and critique of still and moving images. Bringing still and moving image artists together under one roof to learn from and appreciate one another was a founding principal of the original summer institutes that took place in the 1970s. 

The goal of the Seminars is to bring together a community of diverse perspectives for week-long, intensive, cross-medium looks into specific areas of cinema, video, and photography. Participants take part in daily screenings, talks, and artistic showcases with discussions and interviews led by artists, scholars, and critics. Guest curators artists bring in colleagues to screen and discuss works.

Seminars fall on the 1st and 3rd weeks of the CMI. Anyone (artists, practitioners, educators, arts administrators and writers, lovers of cinema) interested in attending one or both of the Screening Seminars can apply now.


Seminar I
June 8 to June 13, 2015

“A portrait!” Charles Baudelaire wrote. “What could be more simple and more complex, more obvious and profound?” We see faces and pictures of faces all the time, but a portrait–whatever that might be, and however it might differ from other types of pictures of people–heightens the experience of seeing people. A portrait should make us really look at that face and consider the thoughts that move behind it, the individual represented. The earliest photographers recognized the power of the photograph to capture individuals, to preserve their appearance, to retain their likeness beyond death. From family albums to social media, the portrait is one of most common currencies of identity and self-expression. During this seminar we will delve into the complex relationships that the genre of portraiture has with history, memory and identity.  Apply Now

Curators: Angela, Tucker, Keliy Anderson-Staley
Visiting Artists: Xaviera Simmons, Michael Lesy, Elaine Mayes, Hye Yun Park


Seminar II
June 22 to June 26, 2015

This week will focus on memory and understanding creative lives by the artifacts that artists and filmmakers leave behind. Larry Sultan (1946 – 2009) was a seminal California photographer whose remarkable work mined archives, family portraiture, Southern California landscape, and the collision of artifice and naturalism. His subjects ranged from his elderly Jewish parents to declassified government photographs, and the San Fernando Valley film sets of the pornography industry. 

Matt Wolf will present a diverse program of narrative, documentary, and experimental films and television episodes inspired by the memory of Sultan that have also influenced Wolf’s filmmaking. Over the course of the week we’ll discuss Sultan’s images and related films that blur the line between fiction and documentary, and that employ diary filmmaking or alternative archival practices. The program will attempt to create a portrait of Sultan informed by his work, and it will investigate the conceptual and aesthetic possibilities of documentary.  Apply Now.

Curators: Matt Wolf, Mikael Kennedy  
Visiting Artists: Ken Burns, others TBD


Tuition and Fees

Tuition $700
Room $187
Board $195


Find out who visited during the 2014 CMI.

Go top