In 1974 James Heddle, then a faculty member in the University of Wisconsin's Communication Arts Department, produced and hosted a twenty-one part television series entitled the New American Cinema at the PBS affiliate in Madison, a town then proud to be called 'the Berkeley of the Mid-West.'

The half-hour segments profiled some of the leading experimental filmmakers and film critics of the '60's and '70's. They were the odd-balls and innovators whose irreverence for prevailing artistic, technological and critical conventions led them to breakthroughs that form the foundation for high-tech multi-media graphic and acoustic effects we take as commonplace today.

This unique historical TV series - produced in 1974 and soon to be re-issued by Syntropia Press as a book and DVD set - features eleven of the leading filmmakers, critics, historians, and theoreticians who founded a movement fusing traditional art forms with the then-just-emerging electronic media.

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The roster includes:
tan Brakhage, Jonas Mekas, Will Hindle, Gene Youngblood, Bruce Baillie, Scott Bartlett, John Whitney, Stan VanDerBeek, Shirley Clarke, P. Adams Sitney and Nam June Paik.

These pioneers created a 'wedding of Psyche and Techne' - the mythical God and Goddess of mysticism and technology - and in the process forged an intermedia syntax the influence of which is visible on every contemporary film, video and computer screen.

Interviewed by award-winning filmmaker and media educator James Heddle, they - the people who are truly the Ancestors of the current explosion of the Do-It-Yourself Media Revolution - tell the story of their movement in their own words, illustrated by extensive excerpts from their historic, ground-breaking works.

The educational DVD series comprises twenty-one exclusive 28-minute programs featuring 11 leaders of the New American Cinema Movement of the 1960's.' The book will combine transcripts of the interviews with biographical updates and commentaries by the editor.
Electronic artist Stan VanDerBeek (right) directs an experimental 'video mix' as series host Jim Heddle explains.
Syntropia Press is a project of EON, The Ecological Options Network a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization © 2009