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Directed by Alain Letourneau

Portland 2014 72 mins. In English

VISITING ARTIST—Building on the quiet, evocative 16mm images that marked his earlier EMPTY QUARTER (2011), LeTourneau’s new experimental documentary examines an urban landscape overlaid with a grid designed for the movement and storage of motor vehicles. His patient camera explores the spaces allocated to roads and parking, fuel distribution and storage, and the activities of maintenance and road construction that serve our “drive-thru” culture. Referencing John Charles Fremont’s THE EXPLORING EXPEDITION TO THE ROCKY MOUNTAINS, OREGON, AND NORTH CALIFORNIA, 1843-44, the present-day environment and Fremont’s historical record are juxtaposed to consider a pristine but arduous past and mobile but congested present.

The Northwest Film Center recognizes and honors the Indigenous peoples of this region on whose ancestral lands the museum now stands. These include the Willamette Tumwater, Clackamas, Kathlemet, Molalla, Multnomah and Watlala Chinook Peoples and the Tualatin Kalapuya who today are part of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde, and many other Native communities who made their homes along the Columbia River. We also want to recognize that Portland today is a community of many diverse Native peoples who continue to live and work here. We respectfully acknowledge and honor all Indigenous communities—past, present, future—and are grateful for their ongoing and vibrant presence.