IntermIdia Research Project

AHRC-FAPESP collaborative project 'Towards an Intermedial History of Brazilian Cinema: Exploring Intermediality as a Historiographic Method'

Institutions: Department of Film, Theatre & Television, University of Reading (UK); Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas, Universidade Federal de São Carlos (Brazil).

AHRC PI: Lúcia Nagib, Co-Is: John Gibbs, Lisa Purse, Alison Butler. PDRAs: Albert Elduque Busquets, Stefan Solomon. Administrator: Richard McKay.

FAPESP PI: Luciana Araújo, Co-Is: Samuel Paiva, Flávia Cesarino Costa, Suzana Reck Miranda. PDRA: Margarida Maria Adamatti.

AHRC award: £718,139.65, including 2 PDRAs and a 0.4 Administrator.

FAPESP award: R$266,591.31.

Project partners: Tate Modern; Reading Film Theatre; Cinemateca Brasileira.

Start date: 1st October 2015, for 42 months.

Project Summary:

This project focuses on cinema's nature as a mixture of arts and media in order to produce the first, groundbreaking intermedial history of Brazilian cinema. It will also explore the uses of intermediality as a historiographic method applicable to cinema as a whole. To that end, it will bring together scholars from the University of Reading and the Federal University of São Carlos, as well as three postdoctoral researchers, combining expertise in cinematic intermediality, Brazilian cinema, film history and film theory. Intermediality has never been applied to cinema as a historiographic method, which is being proposed in this project as an entirely original and promising avenue. Broadly speaking, 'intermediality' refers to the interbreeding of artistic and technical medial forms. In this project, it will be used both to indicate film's mixed nature and to give pride of place to those film phenomena in which hybridity is particularly notable. The main focus will be Brazilian cinema, which from its early days has combined extra-filmic artistic and cultural forms, resulting in an original aesthetic blend. Artists coming from theatre, opera, dance, music, circus, radio, television and the plastic arts left a distinctive mark on film production in the country, apparent in practices from the 1920s movie prologues to the contemporary wave of music films. Rather than privileging some forms over others, intermediality will allow us to place a variety of styles and genres on an equal footing, resulting in a kaleidoscope that accurately reflects a national cinema's cultural richness and political complexity. The project will benefit academics and researchers willing to find new ways of understanding film history away from evolutionary and hierarchical schemes. Two edited books will ensue from the conferences 'Towards an Intermedial History of Brazilian Cinema' and 'The Moving Form of Film: Exploring Intermediality as a Historiographic Method'. Other outputs will include 12 book chapters and more than 30 journal articles. The project will also benefit the general public through impact events coordinated by the postdoctoral researchers and accompanied by comprehensive catalogues: a Tropicália Film Season at Tate Modern; re-stagings of the Movie Prologues at the Cinemateca Brasileira and the Reading Film Theatre; and a Brazilian Music Film Season at the Reading Film Theatre.

    IntermIdia Project Partners

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