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SEEING SOUND:

MARY ELLEN BUTE RETROSPECTIVE


Saturday, February 3 (7:00PM)
Location: The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston
Brown Auditorium
Admission: $9 / $7 for Aurora members

Info and ticket purchase HERE

Members will get a discount at the box office, or can
use a discount code when purchasing tickets in advance.
For member discount code, email HERE

Co-presented by Aurora Picture Show and The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston in association with Center for Visual Music

Introduced by scholar Kit Basquin


Aurora is proud to collaborate with the MFAH and CVM to present this long-overdue hometown retrospective of Houston-born filmmaker Mary Ellen Bute–an important and too-often overlooked pioneer of visual music and electronic art. Between the 1930s and ‘50s, Bute produced short films that translated music into choreographed shapes, shifting lights, and brilliant colorful forms. Curator and critic Ed Halter has said that Bute's work is "at once formally rigorous and energetically high-spirited, like a marriage of high modernism and Merrie Melodies." Though they're little known today, her films were originally seen by wide audiences at Radio City Music Hall and before features in movie theaters around the country. This special, 70-minute retrospective program includes more than a dozen of her dynamic short films (most shown on 16mm film prints from the Cecile Starr Collection at Center for Visual Music), and will be introduced by Kit Smyth Basquin, an arts scholar and family friend of Bute's.

The program includes: Rhythm in Light (1934); Dada (1936); Parabola (1937); Escape (1937); Spook Sport (1940); Tarantella (1940); Polka Graph (1947); Color Rhapsodie (1948); Imagination (1948); New Sensations in Sound (ca. 1949); Pastorale (1950); Mood Contrasts (1953); and Abstronic (1952).

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