The Psychoacoustic Geographers

Emotional exiles from the Land of Opportunity, experimental filmmakers Ben Russell and Jonathan Schwartz come to Europe on the first leg of their infinite world tour – equipped with 16mm films, vocal distortion effects and optical sound tracks, these kindred spirits engage in a kino-cartography of the audiovisual contract. Through a combination of psychedelic cinema, mash-up animations, ethnographic mask ceremonies, and pinhole lenses these two intrepid explorers map out a new world of Image and Sound where vision travels in waveforms and sound flickers like explosions in the night.

Featuring: Black and White Trypps Number One (7:00, 16mm, silent, 2005)*, The Red and Blue Gods (8:00, 16mm, live sound, 2005)*, Pre-Hibernation News (6:00, 16mm, 2005)**, Sunbeam Hunter (3:00, 16mm, 2006)**, Daumë (7:00, 16mm, 2000)*, Den of Tigers (19:00, 16mm, 2002)**, Terra Incognita (10:00, 16mm, 2002)*, For Them Ending (3:00, 16mm, 2005)**, Black and White Trypps Number Two (9:30, 16mm, silent, 2006)* (*by Ben Russell, **by Jonathan Schwartz)

TRT 73:00

TOUR DATES 5/22 – Artcinema OFFOFF in Ghent, Belgium (

5/24 – WORM in Rotterdam, the Netherlands (

5/25 – Extrapool in Nijmegen, the Netherlands (

6/06 – Cinema de Balie in Amsterdam, the Netherlands (

6/07 – Helbaard! in Rotterdam, the Netherlands (

6/08 – Cinema Kontra in Antwerp, Belgium (

6/11 – Nightingale Theatre in Brighton, UK

6/12 – CCRED in London, UK (

6/13 – ICA in London, UK (

6/14 – ICA in London, UK (

6/15 – Z-Bar in Berlin, Germany (

6/20 – d21 in Leipzig, Germany (

6/22 – West Germany in Berlin, Germany (

Black and White Trypps Number One (7:00, 16mm, silent, 2005) by Ben Russell “A theory of origins, a film for the stars and planets exploding all around our heads. Hypnosis is imminent.”

A psychedelic op-art film that references the traditions of hand-painted Avant-Garde cinema by replacing it with something entirely different.

The Red and Blue Gods (8:00, 16mm, live sound, 2005) by Ben Russell An ethnographic field report in which the Anthropologist describes the mythic creation of an unnamed ‘sun-scraping structure’ through the ritualized actions of the Red and Blue Gods. Performed with live narration and sound effects over a pre-recorded soundscape.

Pre-Hibernation News (6:00, 16mm, 2005) by Jonathan Schwartz “:hit the slopes with colorful exaggerations, take a long sleep, and hope to wake up without an anxious yawn”

Sunbeam Hunter (3:00, 16mm, 2006) by Jonathan Schwartz “for the prevention of violence, check the manual, it might die in the seventies, or I was wondering if sincerity could battle irony”

Daumë (7:00, 16mm, 2000) by Ben Russell “One of the strangest films I have ever seen; its characters come and go as if they’re ‘primitives’ posing for the camera, either obeying or fighting an ethnographer’s controlling eye.” – Fred Camper, Chicago Reader film critic

Den of Tigers (19:00, 16mm, 2002) by Jonathan Schwartz “an invitation to walk look listen. West Bengal, India. collected, or pretend to.”

Terra Incognita (10:00, 16mm, 2002) “A pinhole film, a cheap robot voice, a makeshift history. An explorer’s tale of the unknown part of the world.” Terra Incognita is a lensless film whose cloudy pinhole images create a memory of history. Ancient and modern explorer texts of Easter Island are garbled together by a computer narrator, resulting in a forever repeating narrative of discovery, colonialism, loss and departure.

For Them Ending (3:00, 16mm, 2005) by Jonathan Schwartz “or I was wondering how to make New England fall colors linger so if you couldn’t visit soon the yellow oranges and reds would still be waiting for you”

Black and White Trypps Number Two (9:30, 16mm, silent, 2006) by Ben Russell “The dead of winter and all that has fallen will fall. Pass the wind and skies the shudder of the trees and turn your own eyes in.” Part two in a series of films dealing with naturally-derived psychedelia.


Ben Russell is a Providence-based experimental film/videomaker whose works have screened at the Museum of Modern Art and in such exotic locales as Tokyo, Cologne, Rotterdam, and Iowa City. Ben runs a microcimena called Magic Lantern (, and he has made films about the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, the exploration of Easter Island, and the end of the world. His most recent film is an hour-long experimental narrative about the uncertain mythology of Billy the Kid.

Jonathan Schwartz is a filmmaker living in Boston.  He has made Indian ethnographies, cinema-records of family memory, and he recently began work on a 33.3 minute “concept album” of collage films edited in-camera and amplified via exaggerated sound design. His films have shown in places like the Telluride International Exposition, Boston Cyber Arts Festival, Paris/Berlin International Meetings, and Mass Art Film Society.