That Cold Day in the Park

A cold day in the park. Park bench in Tatlow Park, Vancouver. Photo: C. Hagemoen
A cold day in the park. Park bench in Tatlow Park, Vancouver. Photo: C. Hagemoen

One of Vancouver’s oldest parks, Tatlow Park (at Point Grey Road and MacDonald), was the central location of one of the first Hollywood features filmed in Vancouver; Robert Altman‘s often neglected 1969 film, That Cold Day in the Park.

A newly restored 35mm print of the film is screening this weekend (March 8th & 9th) part of the the UCLA Festival of Preservation. This biennial festival is making its only Canadian stop at The Cinematheque in Vancouver. The UCLA Festival of Preservation reflects the “broad and deep efforts” of UCLA Film & Television Archive to preserve and restore America’s national moving image heritage.

The historical sweep and technical wizardry of UCLA Film & Television Archive’s preservation projects—from early silent films and Golden Age classics, to fascinating rarities and contemporary gems—are showcased in our biennial UCLA Festival of Preservation.

Hosting this Festival allows the Cinematheque to showcase “the important preservation and restoration work being done by other cinema archives, film studios, and specialty distribution companies around the globe”. The preservation of Altman’s first feature, That Cold Day in the Park (1969), was funded by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association and The Film Foundation.

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Burrard Bridge celebrates 81 years!

Happy Canada Day! Vancouver’s  art deco style Burrard Bridge opened on Canada Day (or Dominion Day, as it was known then) July 1, 1932.

The History of Metropolitan Vancouver has a great history of the Burrard Bridge, you can find here.

Amateur film maker Sid Groberman shot this fantastic film while he was driving over the Burrard Bridge a few years after it was built. What is even more impressive is that he stops mid span and continues filming – a move not recommended today. There is a bonus at the end of the film where he visits Vancouver’s English Bay. All in all, a great way to celebrate Canada Day. Enjoy.

Burrard Bridge – YouTube.

Finding ‘Bunty’ Brennan, part 1

Visual literacy, the ability to “read” pictorial images, is a basic skill necessary for working with still and moving images. Reading images is the first step in researching images effectively – it is the start of the appraisal process. Sometimes the hardest part is figuring out the context of the photograph (or any historical artifact) and the relationship (if any) it has with other items found with it. At work, we referred to it as “forensic cataloguing”  – taking all the clues you have (visual, textual, etc.) and investigating them, until you have a clearer picture of what is in front of you. Sometimes all you have to start with is the artifact itself, and a brief (often vague) notation. In the case of the photo below, I had the name of the owner, but no other contextual information was found on the photo envelope.

Bunty in park
Eileen “Bunty” Brennan in park. ca. 1946. Photo: [Bertram F. Nobel]
Take for example the photo above, on first glance it is a B&W photo of a woman in a park-like setting. Look a little closer, and you might notice the mountains in the background; the clothing she is wearing; and the style of her hair. You begin to get a clearer picture (no pun intended) of how to describe this photograph.

What if you were to add into the mix, the following two photographs found in the same negative envelope along with the photo above?

Continue reading “Finding ‘Bunty’ Brennan, part 1”