The older I become, the less surprised I am to discover the hidden threads connecting my life, holding me together. My dear friend and colleague, the filmmaker Carolyn Kaylor, recently sent me an announcement for a charity screening of Fred Wiseman's Hospital she was setting up in Los Angeles. As I was perusing the announcement, I saw that the beneficiary of the screening was Tucker Stilley, an artist living in Los Angeles who suffers from ALS. While I have never met Tucker, I went to High School in Flint, MI with his brother Phillip and have met his parents here and there back home in Michigan. I was at once devastated for Tucker and his family and left in wonderment at how small the world can be.
Since I received Carolyn's announcement, I have been looking at Tucker's work, falling in love with his ideas and thinking a lot about the fragility of the body in relation to making art. And even though I don't know Tucker, we have a shared history, an overlapping experience of a place and time, one that I think is clear in the mixed-media and audio/video work that I have been lucky enough to experience. It speaks to me.
i think he passed out
Tucker has recently begun working on a comic that deals with his disease. It's funny and moving and really gets to the heart of the matter in a way that only comics can:
I have purchased a virtual ticket to help support Tucker and his family in their battle against this awful disease and I hope you join me, Fred Wiseman, Carolyn Kaylor and so many others in either attending this screening of Hosptial tonight, October 23, or if, like me, you live outside of the area, by making a donation to help Tucker handle the incredible cost of the health care he requires. I wish I could be there to see Tucker's recent work; for once, I feel jealous of Los Angelenos!
Hospital (1969, 85min., 16mm), the landmark documentary film by Fred Wiseman, will screen at REDCAT, the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater, October 23 at 8:00 pm, to benefit Los Angeles media artist, Tucker Stilley. Mr. Stilley is a long-time friend of Fred Wiseman, and suffers from Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS, aka Lou Gehrig's Disease), a neurodegenerative disease that has no known cure. When Mr. Wiseman learned of Mr. Stilley's battle with ALS, he offered to screen one of his rarely projected titles as a benefit for Tucker and his family. Led by Filmmaker Carolyn Kaylor and Tucker’s wife, Filmmaker Lindsay Mofford—both of whom worked for Wiseman throughout the 80’s and the 90’s—the filmmaking community unites for this common effort to support a fellow artist.
Hospital shows the daily activities of a large urban hospital with the emphasis on the emergency ward and outpatient clinics. The cases depicted illustrate how medical expertise, availability of resources, organizational considerations, and the nature of communication among the staff and patients affect the delivery of appropriate healthcare.
A preview of Mr. Stilley’s latest media art will be projected in the lounge and lobby of REDCAT on the evening of the event, October 23 at 8:00pm. Due to paralysis, a result of the disease, all the sound and video was composed using only a reflective bindi-dot on Tucker's forehead that interacts with his computer. All proceeds from the event will go to support Mr. Stilley and PERMANENT RECORD, his ongoing media project.
Tickets are general admission and prices are tiered at $25, $50, $125 and $250. Ticket Price includes the screening and reception to follow with food by Justin Cropper, executive chef of TRAXX Restaurant, in beautiful Union Station in downtown Los Angeles, and Wine from the Wine from the Benziger family Winery in Glenn Ellen, CA. Those unable to attend the event can still participate by purchasing a "Virtual Ticket" HERE.
REDCAT is located at the corner of W. 2nd and S. Hope Streets, inside the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex (631 West 2nd Street; Los Angeles, 90012). Seating is general admission. Tickets may be purchased at the REDCAT box office, located at the corner of 2nd and Hope Streets, by calling 213.237.2800, or visiting www.redcat.org.