Monthly Archives: July 2015

9.4.15 A pirate’s guide to survival

Dara Engler 
A pirate’s guide to survival 

Spearfishing for Sea Lamprey
How to Skin a Squirrel

Engler’s paintings are portraits of an alter ego, often rooted in exaggerations of her own experiences. Their loose narratives are allegorical, embracing human foible and the humor that comes with it. Her interest in the figure lies in these awkward obstacles to which we can all relate. Inspired by her time in Louisiana and Ithaca and by Karen Russell’s book “St. Lucy’s Home For Girls Raised By Wolves,” this pirate has adopted the curiosity of Russell’s characters. She is skinning squirrels, spear fishing for sea lamprey, and learning to build wattle and daub shelter. She is an explorer, running into new creatures in new lands.

As an artist, Engler has always enjoyed constructing environments for her character before painting. They function as stage sets that are translated into two-dimensions again before they reach the audience. The things she previously considered to be props are now as much a part of the artwork as the paintings themselves and they should be shown together. In her paintings it is often unclear whether the figure is outside or whether the background is a backdrop in an imagined space. Her work plays with flatness, pattern and line juxtaposed with the rendered form. The paintings teeter between real and imagined worlds. The inclusion of the three-dimensional objects further clouds the line between fact and fiction.

images from top:

Spearfishing for Sea Lamprey, 2014, oil on canvas, 36in. x 60in

How to Skin a Squirrel, 2014, oil on canvas, 33in. x 40in


Outdoor screening at dark: 

presented by the Ithaca International Fantastic Film Festival

(weather permitting)

Love Eternal– Brendan Muldowney; 2013/ Ireland

LoveEternFeat-2For Ian Harding, death is natural- he’s been confronted to it his whole life, and as anyone would do, he’s trying to make sense of it. The isolated young man is beginning a quest: chasing the meaning of his life – And the only way to get there is to get as close to death as possible.

Based on Kei Oishi’s acclaimed novel In Love With The Dead, Brendan Muldowney’s film is an emotional tour de force. Despite the dark areas of the human mind explored form the first second of the first reel- the fascination of death transcends the film, and Muldowney’s achieves a level of pure and simple beauty that any filmmakers and cinematographers would only dream of. A one of a kind film, for a one of a kind story, it’s the art of cinema at it’s finest.

Watch the Trailer here