Tags for: Cleveland Silent Film Festival: Birth of the Modern Industrial City
  • Performance
Still Image From Man With A Movie Camera

Photo courtesy of the Cleveland Silent Film Festival

Cleveland Silent Film Festival: Birth of the Modern Industrial City

Friday, September 8, 2023, 7:00–9:00 p.m.
Location:  Gartner Auditorium
Gartner Auditorium

About The Event

The Cleveland Museum of Art is proud to partner with the Cleveland Silent Film Festival and Colloquium and the Cleveland Institute of Art’s Cinematheque to present two very different films about the birth of the modern industrial city: The Heart of Cleveland (1924) followed by the experimental documentary Man with a Movie Camera (1929), both with original scores performed live by the incomparable Mont Alto Motion Picture Orchestra.

The Heart of Cleveland was produced for the Cleveland Electric Illuminating Company and is an opportunity to see glorious aerial shots of Cleveland during its industrial heyday. The film chronicles a fictional family living on a Northeast Ohio farm with no electricity. A pilot en route to Cleveland makes an emergency landing in their field and invites the two farm children to the city to learn about electricity. The children tour the offices of the Illuminating Company as well as the Lake Shore Plant—the “world’s largest steam-electric” plant—a.k.a. “the heart of Cleveland.”

The Heart of Cleveland was recently discovered at Cinecraft Productions in Ohio City. The movie was digitized and archived by the Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington, Delaware, and restored with a grant from the National Film Preservation Foundation. This screening, courtesy of the Hagley Museum and Library, features a talk by Kevin Martin of the Hagley preservation team, who will give a background on the film, its discovery, and its restoration. (29 min.)

The 1929 Soviet documentary Man with a Movie Camera regularly ranks in the top films of all time. Director Dziga Vertov and cinematographer Mikhail Kaufman present a mesmerizing tour of Soviet urban life (besides some footage from Moscow, most sequences were filmed in present-day Ukraine). Deftly employing all available cinematographic tools, the film includes almost 1,800 individual shots and no intertitles in a feat of visual storytelling. Man with a Movie Camera is one of the most radical and influential—and fun—avant-garde features ever made. (67 min.)

$18, CMA members $15.

The 2023–24 Performing Arts Series is sponsored by the Musart Society. This program is made possible in part by the Ernest L. and Louise M. Gartner Fund, the P. J. McMyler Musical Endowment Fund, and the Anton and Rose Zverina Music Fund.

    The Cleveland Museum of Art is funded in part by residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.

    Performing arts programs are supported in part by the Ohio Arts Council, which receives support from the State of Ohio and the National Endowment for the Arts.