Triple Canopy and the Roxy Cinema are pleased to present the premiere of a trilogy by Daniel Chew and Micaela Durand that captures the hypermediation of life and the constant trial of self-representation. The screening of the short films First (2019), Negative Two (2019), and 38 (2021) will be followed by a conversation with Matías Piñeiro, an award-winning filmmaker whose work was recently featured at the New York Film Festival.
Chew and Durand’s films probe the compulsion to be “extremely online” while navigating the entanglement of desire, self-representation, sexuality, race, and class (as well as the streets and dance clubs of New York City). Each of the films follows the daily life of a different protagonist: a teenage girl faces an onslaught of creepy, prying DMs during a night out with a friend; a young gay man meanders through the streets of New York City as his text exchanges with a potential hookup become increasingly intimate; a woman in her late thirties obsessively tracks the online presence of the younger woman who slept with her now ex-boyfriend.
Rather than represent the internet on screen, First, Negative Two, and 38 transpose the prevalent norms—the sense of distraction and simultaneous conversations, the relentless documentation of mundane activities, the parasocial relationships—into film. By doing so, Chew and Durand convey the actual feeling of always being online whether or not a device is present, whether seeking solace or sex.
The screening will be followed by a conversation between Chew, Durand, and Piñeiro, whose films often examine the dramatization of private feelings and intimate relationships.
Written and directed by Micaela Durand and Daniel Chew, starring Mae Wangmo
Digital, 12 min.
Negative Two (2019)
Written and directed by Micaela Durand and Daniel Chew, starring Eric Lee
Digital, 28 min.
Written and directed by Micaela Durand and Daniel Chew, starring Curie Choi and Alicia Novella Vasquez
Digital, 23 min.
True to Life, Triple Canopy’s twenty-eighth issue, is made possible through the generous support of the Stolbun Family; Critical Minded, an initiative to invest in cultural critics of color cofounded by The Nathan Cummings Foundation and the Ford Foundation; the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts; the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; and Jane Hait, a founding member of Triple Canopy Director’s Circle.
Daniel Chew and Micaela Durand are a filmmaker duo based in New York. Their work has been shown in the United States and abroad at venues including the International Film Festival Rotterdam, New York Film Festival, MoMA PS1 (New York City), White Columns (New York City), MOCA Los Angeles, the Shed (New York City), Sheffield DocFest, and Le Cinéma Club. They have received fellowships from MacDowell and the Jerome Foundation. They are currently developing their first feature film.