A Holiday Appeal from Anthology Film Archives

Anthology Film Archives: Celebrating 40 Fantastic Years!

The following letter was sent in an Anthology Film Archives email. Considering not everyone subscribes, nor understands what the A.F.A. is, it’s a good idea to share. Jonas Mekas, Founder and Artistic Director of the Anthology Film Archives, explains that sometime in the future, the Anthology Film Archives will big time lift their website to the next level. If you can spare some change, I strongly suggest supporting the Archives by contributing a Merry Christmas tax-deductible donation by clicking here.

Anthology Film Archives, congratulations on 40 years! We love you!

The following text is verbatim from an A.F.A. email sent out today:

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Dear Friends,

As someone who values and supports independent cinema and culture, we here at Anthology Film Archives thought you should know that this year marks a momentous occasion in our history – our 40th Anniversary! We have been preserving, exhibiting, and promoting independent and artist-made film since 1970, and continue to represent an essential part of the cultural landscape. As we enter our fifth decade, we hope you’ll consider supporting Anthology, by making a tax-deductible donation, becoming a member, or giving a gift membership this holiday season at anthologyfilmarchives.org/support

We are convinced that the best way to commemorate our vital contributions to film culture is to make our anniversary year a milestone in the next chapter of our existence. To that end, we are bringing Anthology fully into the digital era, embracing the potential to share our collections and programs with a worldwide audience. In July we launched the first phase of a completely new website, an enormous upgrade both aesthetically and practically, which features:

  • improved graphics;
  • streamlined screening information; and
  • a vastly expanded section for our collections of films, stills and audio!

Work is also progressing on an even more ambitious digital initiative, an AFA Library and Archive Collections website, which will offer scholars and students of independent cinema and contemporary art unprecedented access to resources including:

  • rare, unique, and historic streaming films, videos, and audio files;
  • webpages devoted to individual film and video artists;
  • study sections dedicated to historic movements, themes, styles, and
  • genres in independent and artist film; and
  • scanned magazines, journals, and files containing correspondence, reviews,
  • and program notes.

We are currently developing this site with initial funding from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and anticipate launching it in early 2012.

While we are striving to expand online access to our collections, we remain as committed as ever to the unique experience of viewing actual film prints with an audience, in a movie theater. Our exhibition program is consistently praised by critics, fellow curators, and filmgoers from all over the world. 2010 saw numerous acclaimed programs, as well as a series of special events marking our 40th anniversary, beginning with a wildly successful benefit concert featuring performances by Lou Reed, Sonic Youth, and Kenneth Anger. These events, scheduled throughout 2010 and continuing into 2011, include special screenings with Jim Jarmusch, John Waters, and others. And soon all our programs will be presented in the best possible conditions, thanks to our success in securing grants from the city and state to upgrade our main theater’s projection and sound systems with state-of-the-art equipment.

This year saw exciting accomplishments attesting to our health and longevity, as we increased our funding from the city and state; placed a major locational work by Paul Sharits at the Smithsonian’s Hirshhorn Museum; saw an increase in attendance of over 20%; loaned films to over 30 institutions; preserved 25 films for the future; and initiated an art project for which some of today’s most acclaimed artists will create limited-edition works which will be reproduced for the covers of our exhibition calendars. As we enter our fifth decade on the threshold of Anthology’s expanding internet and social networking presence, and on the cusp of new digital endeavors, we are determined to make Anthology’s work permanently accessible for generations to come.

Stay tuned for updates on Facebook, Twitter, and especially our website, which will soon include online ticketing and credit card payment at our box office! We want to make your time with us – whether on our website or in our theaters – as pleasurable as possible.

We need your support to help us complete these projects and continue the momentum as we celebrate four decades. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation today at anthologyfilmarchives.org/support

Best wishes for a cinematic New Year,
Jonas Mekas, Founder and Artistic Director
and the Staff and Board of Anthology Film Archives

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