Traces That Resemble Us

FILM: Nov. 12 – Dec. 17
ART: Nov. 21 – Jan. 30
Opening Reception: Monte Clark Gallery, Nov. 21 at 2pm

“Perhaps what is most moving about the program is not the act of tracing the relationship between film and Vancouver artists, but the creation of a new relationship between audiences: the visual art lovers and cinephiles.”

The Cinematheque, in collaboration with Monte Clark Gallery, presents Traces That Resemble Us, a screening series and art exhibition that explores the intersections between visual art in Vancouver and cinema. Motivated by Jeff Wall’s history as a former film programmer at The Cinematheque, Traces That Resemble Us invites twelve prominent Vancouver-based artists to each program a film that has been influential to his or her practice, and to exhibit artwork for a corresponding group exhibition at Monte Clark Gallery.

Participating artists include Vikky Alexander, Roy Arden, Robert Arndt, Karin Bubaš, Dana Claxton, Stan Douglas, Greg Girard, Rodney Graham, Owen Kydd, Myfanwy MacLeod, Ian Wallace, and Jeff Wall.

Screenings will occur on Thursday evenings from November 12 to December 17 at The Cinematheque, with each film preceded by a special introduction.

The art exhibition will run from November 21 to January 30 at Monte Clark Gallery, with an Opening Reception on November 21 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm. Monte Clark Gallery is located at 105 – 525 Great Northern Way, Vancouver. View exhibition images at

To coincide with Traces That Resemble Us, participating artist Karin Bubaš has produced a limited-edition print inspired by her film choice, The Night of the Hunter. Click here for more details.

Traces That Resemble Us takes its title from a phrase of Jean-Luc Godard. In one of a series of lectures given at Concordia University in 1978, the auteur claimed that, in cinema, the traces of former images are found in each that follow it. Every image is a history of all other cinematic images. He holds that we — its viewers and makers — are also traces in those images, as our human history is also threaded into that most significant cultural and social phenomenon of the last century: cinema. And the artists in Traces, with their selected films and artworks, evince how these practices also are projected onto it.”

Aaron Peck, excerpted from his essay “Traces That Resemble Us” (2015), available to read in full in the exhibition booklet

Program notes by participating artists.

Acknowledgements: The Cinematheque is grateful to Monte Clark, Lindsay Inouye, and Matt McGale from Monte Clark Gallery; Derek Barnett and Vicky Lum from Information Office; Aaron Peck; and all participating artists and guest speakers for making this project possible.


Click for film notes + showtimes

Recent Showings

IAN WALLACE / Jean-Luc Godard's 1963 film is "a major work of modern art by one of the greatest artists in the history of cinema."
DANA CLAXTON / The production value and political milieu of Lumet's 1975 classic are points of reference for Claxton.
ROY ARDEN / The "traumatic experience of modernity" in this Harold Lloyd-starring 1928 film resonates with Arden's recent work.
VIKKY ALEXANDER / The "satirical perspective on architecture" in Jacques Tati's visionary masterpiece informs Alexander's choice.
KARIN BUBAŠ / Charles Laughton's haunting, poetic 1955 film is "like a child's nightmare come to life."
STAN DOUGLAS / Samuel Beckett's short film is the impetus for Douglas's Vidéo, which also screens.
JEFF WALL / "An outstanding example of the new colour cinematography that seemed to emerge from everywhere in the later 1960s."
GREG GIRARD / Tokyo is acknowledged as a modern city, "a refreshing corrective to outdated reading of the time," in Pollack's pulpy 1974 film.
MYFANWY MACLEOD / Vancouver plays itself in Fosse's film about Dorothy Stratten, a central figure in MacLeod's 2012 origami works.
OWEN KYDD / "Mistakenly criticized as white trash nihilism, Gummo instead carried the torch of structuralist cinema into the late 1990s."
ROBERT ARNDT / Bresson's Dostoevskian masterpiece is referenced in Arndt's Pursuit, Plunder & Fleece, which also screens.
RODNEY GRAHAM / The pop-heavy soundtrack to Marco Ferreri's neglected 1969 masterpiece informs artist-musician Graham's choice.