Film

  • A Machine to Live In
    Yoni Goldstein and Meredith Zielke
    Directors
  • GRANTEE
    Sebastian Alvarez, Andrew Benz, Yoni Goldstein & Meredith Zielke
    GRANT YEAR
    2014

Yoni Goldstein, Andrew Benz, Meredtih Zielke, and Sebastian Alvarez, A Machine to Live In, production still, 2014, Brasilia, Brazil.

A Machine to Live In is a feature-length documentary about the imaginative and material processes of building one's utopia. The film documents the history of highly controlled modernist planning in Brazil alongside radical projects in cult and mystical architecture. The film's attention radiates outward from Niemeyer and Costa's capital, Brasília, to the flourishing landscape of UFO cults, pyramids, monuments, and futurist projects. The film unfolds through Clarice Lispector's writings on the inauguration of Brasília and subsequent interviews with Oscar Niemeyer. Her literature describes a fraught ideology embedded into the city's concrete design while imagining ahistorical mythologies that may one day disrupt its order. A Machine to Live In attempts to locate where the desires for myth and reason sublimates in the building of utopian spaces. It collects vignettes and stories from architects and builders as they describe their ideal cities, both real and transcendent.

Yoni Goldstein and Meredith Zielke (directors) are award-winning international filmmakers, cinematographers, and editors. Goldstein and Zielke work collaboratively on social documentary projects: from examining hybridized healing practices in the Northern Andes (La Curación) and children in American prisons (Natural Life) to critical explorations of history and somatic memory (The Jettisoned). Their films have been presented internationally across several major festivals, conferences, and classrooms. Goldstein and Zielke’s films have been awarded and selected for official screenings at the Ann Arbor Film Festival, Hot Springs Documentary Festival, the Sydney Latino Film Festival, the Festival International du Film Ethnographique du Québec, the Festival International du Documentaire et Rencontres sur la Biodiversité et les Peuples, Hot Docs Digital Doc Shop, Globians Doc Fest Berlin, the Aspekty Film Festival in Poland, and many others.

Sebastian Alvarez (producer) is a San Francisco Bay Area–based interdisciplinary artist and independent researcher. Working across diverse media, including film, audio, performance, and installation, his artistic practice explores the interrelation and fragmentation of human systems. With a focus on ritualistic performance, Alvarez draws upon notions of intimacy and estrangement, and employs the use of silence and the musicality of "untranslated" language. He received his BFA (2009) and MFA (2011) in performance from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and has performed, curated, and presented work internationally at such venues and institutions as Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (San Francisco), the Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago), the Hyde Park Art Center, the Chicago Cultural Center, the South Side Community Art Center, the Whitney Biennial (NYC), Postgarage (Graz, Austria), Townhouse Gallery (Cairo, Egypt), and the Festival Internacional de Cine de Barichara (Barichara, Colombia).

Andrew Benz (director of photography) is a professional cinematographer, RED camera technologist, and studio owner based in Chicago. His award-winning broadcast and industry films have featured on BBC, CNN, ESPN, ABC, the Discovery Channel, and the History Channel. Benz specializes in independent film, television, and documentary cinematography, with emphasis on aerial, motion control, and experimental strategies for moving image projects.

Lou Mallozzi (sound editor) is the founder of Chicago's Experimental Sound Studio, and an audio artist who dismembers and reconstitutes sound, language, gesture, and image in various media. Mallozzi has designed and edited the soundtracks for a number of independent films, including Fever by Paula Froehle, Israel in Exile by Juan Ramirez, The Quiet by Thomas Silva, The King of the Tango by Karen Freidberg, and the Academy Award–nominated short animation Stubble Trouble by Joe Meredith. His sound works, texts, and visual works have been included in several publishing and exhibition projects, including Experimental Sound and Radio, edited by Allen Weiss (MIT Press), and Infrathin, curated by Dan Devening (Northwestern University).

Jim Fairchild (composer) is a songwriter and performer based in San Francisco, California. Fairchild began his professional career in 1995 as a recording and touring member of the acclaimed band Grandaddy. As a composer, he has collaborated with artist Kai Althoff on the play Skillat Hans, written short pieces for MTV's Teen Mom, Jersey Shore, and If You Really Knew Me, and had his music used in ABC's comedy The Greek. In 2009, he became a member of the band Modest Mouse.

Diego Silva Ardila (researcher/urban planner) is a former Fulbright Scholar with a PhD in urban planning and policy who currently serves as professor at the Universidad Industrial de Santander in Bucaramanga, Colombia. Silva Ardila obtained degrees in history, economics (MSc), and international relations (MSc); in addition, he has worked as a cooperation officer for the Colombian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as an economics advisor for a member of the Colombian House of Representatives, and as an adjunct professor for several Colombian universities. His specializations include geographic information systems, game theory, and urban policy mobilities and transformation.