After Deren, The International Journal of Screendance: Editorial: After Deren

Claudia Kappenberg (Editor), Douglas Rosenberg (Editor)

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorial


This is the third issue of The International Journal of Screendance, dedicated to the work of the Americal filmmaker Maya Deren. Deren (née Eleanora Derenkowskaia) was an uncontested pioneer of the American Avant-Garde, if not its “mother”. The New York-based scenario of an internationally connected, multinational group of filmmakers who were exploring a medium that was not yet established as a medium for art constitutes the backdrop for this issue on Maya Deren and her legacy. A range of international voices have therefore been brought together to demonstrate the wide impact of Deren’s work and the extensive migration of her ideas. The writers featured in this issue articulate questions from within a muddy yet vital zone of inter-, trans- and cross-disciplinary debates, offering readings of Deren’s work while further opening up the field of possible references. Much like Nichols’s Maya Deren and the American Avant-garde, which grew out of a conference at San Francisco State University in 1996, this issue of The International Journal of Screendance builds on a Deren season at the British Film Institute in London in 2011. Curated by Elinor Cleghorn as part of her PhD research into the relation between the body and technologies in early film practices, the conference demonstrated a significant interest in Deren’s work from UK-based filmmakers and scholars. This was complemented by Claudia Kappenberg’s visit to Buenos Aires and discussions on Maya Deren’s influence in South America at the Festival Internacional de Videodanza, which suggested that an issue of The International Journal of Screendance devoted to Deren would be very relevant for the international readership. Finally, a retrospective in 2012 of the American filmmaker Barbara Hammer at Tate Modern (London, UK) and at the Jeu de Pomme (Paris, France) with a screening of the film Maya Deren’s Sink suggested a further expansion of contemporary perspectives on Deren. The issue was edited by Claudia Kappenberg and Douglas Rosenberg, guest editor was Elinor Cleghorn.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-5
Number of pages5
JournalThe International Journal of Screendance
Publication statusPublished - 8 Feb 2014


  • Screendance
  • Maya Deren
  • American Avant-garde
  • migration
  • film history
  • film theory
  • choreographic practices


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