JOANIE 4 JACKIE
Joanie 4 Jackie (formerly known as Big Miss Moviola) was an underground film network formed by artist and filmmaker Miranda July in 1995. For more than a decade this project fomented a generation of women filmmakers — inspiring girls to make movies for the first time, circulating work by seasoned artists to places their distributors and gallerists couldn’t reach, documenting films that hadn’t yet been made, and connecting people across the country through booklets of letters that arrived with each videotape. By the time the project had run its course the work of over 200 filmmakers was distributed through 22 compilation tapes, and Joanie 4 Jackie exhibited from Vancouver to Monterrey to Ljubljana in spaces from punk clubs to the Museum of Modern Art. The complete J4J archive, consisting of video tapes, fliers, personal correspondence, grant applications, research notes, press materials, and other ephemera, has just been acquired by The Getty Research Institute. The GRI will make the archive accessible to all and it will be contextualized amongst other important artist and video archives, including The Woman’s Building, the Guerilla Girls, Yvonne Rainer, Carolee Schneemann, Robert Mapplethorpe, and Eleanor Antin.
For twenty years Astria Suparak’s relationship to Joanie 4 Jackie evolved from spectator to fan, event programmer, tour booker, distributor, historian, and curator (of the J4J Co-Star Tape Some Kind of Loving, 2000, and the Alien She exhibition, 2013). She talks about her relationship to the project and working with Miranda July for The Getty blog The Iris, and shows a few items from her contribution to the archive.
The complete Joanie 4 Jackie archive is viewable at joanie4jackie.com.
A selection of the videos is available on the Criterion Channel beginning July 2020.
NEW YORK TIMES, T MAGAZINE
“Twenty-two years after the project began, the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles has acquired the Joanie 4 Jackie collection (some 300 videos, documentation and press materials) from July, contextualizing the project within feminist and queer history, alongside the archives of, among others, the Guerrilla Girls and Robert Mapplethorpe.
Here, July takes us through the evolution of Joanie 4 Jackie through artifacts from the archive, highlighting its videos, early inspirations and influence. To see more, visit joanie4jackie.com, a massive digital record of the project that launched today.”
– “Miranda July Shares Her Vintage Feminist Film Archive,” Mary Kaye Schilling, January 30, 2017
LOS ANGELES TIMES
“The Getty is cataloging and digitizing the collection to make it available for scholars.
Also on Monday, July launched joanie4jackie.com, an online record of the project that’s been seven years in the making. It includes videos and press coverage of ‘Joanie 4 Jackie,’ July’s personal correspondence as well as participants’ memories of the project and updates on their lives and careers.”
– “The Getty acquires Miranda July’s feminist DIY video archive for ‘Joanie 4 Jackie’,” Deborah Vankin, January 30, 2017
“MJ: At the Sundance Film Festival, there was only one other movie made by a woman in competition for the Grand Jury Prize, out of sixteen. When you come out of nowhere as a woman with a feature film, everyone wants an explanation. How could you have had the balls to do that? The answer was J4J. These women filmmakers that I had surrounded myself with were my primary reality. It was a shock to realize we didn’t change the world. In fact, it still really sucks out here. That’s when I decided I should probably make the archive public, through a new website and with a permanent institutional home.
JBW: J4J did have an impact on many of the people who were involved in some way, such as Astria Suparak, K8 Hardy, and Sarah Gertrude Rose Shapiro. The project, and our friendship, also shaped my own interest in feminist, alternative, and amateur production. Insisting that the biographical and the critical should not be divorced is a queer method of history—one beautifully enacted in recently published writings by Hilton Als, Douglas Crimp, and Maggie Nelson. For me, J4J made legible how personal relationships and artistic/scholarly work feed and structure each other.”
– Miranda July and Julia Bryan-Wilson, “Woman With A Camera: Miranda July talks to Julia Bryan-Wilson about Joanie 4 Jackie,” February 2017
THE GETTY: The Iris
“Joanie 4 Jackie was an underground film network formed by artist Miranda July in 1995. For more than a decade this project fomented a generation of female-identified filmmakers—inspiring girls to make movies for the first time, circulating work by seasoned artists to places their distributors and gallerists couldn’t reach, documenting films that hadn’t yet been made, and connecting people across the country through booklets of letters that arrived with each videotape. By the time the project had run its course the work of over 200 filmmakers was distributed through 22 compilation tapes, and Joanie 4 Jackie exhibited from Vancouver to Monterrey to Ljubljana in spaces from punk clubs to the Museum of Modern Art. […]
Throughout the last twenty years, my relationship to Joanie 4 Jackie has evolved from spectator to fan, consumer, event programmer, tour booker, distributor, historian, and curator. Below is a selection of artifacts spanning this time, now available along with the complete archive at joanie4jackie.com.”
– “Behind the Scenes and On the Stage with Joanie 4 Jackie,” Astria Suparak, February 2, 2017
“On why it’s important to preserve ‘Joanie 4 Jackie’:
‘I’ve always been interested in archives and what’s saved, and how that plays into what becomes history—what becomes the story of our country and the world and film. At a certain point I realized this collection is one of those things that, while it was important to me and the women it represented, would disappear without a trace unless it is formally archived. It was too underground and too intimate, and between women. It wasn’t interested in being a talent showcase or any of the things that remain in history.’ (Miranda July)”
– “How This Underground Feminist Art Project Turned Miranda July Into a Filmmaker: The rare “Joanie 4 Jackie” films are being relaunched on a new website,” Estelle Tang, January 30, 2017
IT’S NICE THAT, “Miranda July’s underground feminist film movement Joanie 4 Jackie is now an open archive,” Jenny Brewer, January 31, 2017
i-D MAGAZINE, “welcome to joanie 4 jackie,” Wendy Syfret, January 31, 2017
BUST, “Miranda July’s ‘90s Feminist Film Archive Is Finally Available,” Aoife Kelly, January 31, 2017
LAIST: “The Getty Acquires Miranda July’s Feminist Film Archive,” Layla Halabian, January 31, 2017
LENNY LETTER, “A Challenge and a Promise,” February 1, 2017
“So while the films may certainly not be what you’re used to, they are worth the watch. This eclectic, amazing reflection of life as a female filmmaker in the 90s is one of a kind.”
– “‘Joanie 4 Jackie’, Miranda July’s Feminist Film Chain Letter, Is Finally Available Online,” Jade Budowski, February 6, 2017
DAZED, “Miranda July shares archive of her secret 90s film movement: Joanie 4 Jackie was an underground network for ‘underrepresented’ female filmmakers,” Dominique Sisley, February 1, 2017
The Criterion Collection’s streaming service spotlights a selection of eclectic shorts from the Joanie 4 Jackie project, along with a 2008 introduction by Shauna McGarry and films by Miranda July.
“JULY 2020 PROGRAMMING ON THE CRITERION CHANNEL ANNOUNCED” by Ryan Gallagher, CriterionCast