Wednesday, April 6, 2011 - 3:00pm
The Gladstone Hotel, Art Bar, 1214 Queen Street West

This Is Not A Reading Series partners with the 2011 Images Festival to present a conversation between author of The Shimmering Beast, Steve Reinke and 2011 Images Festival Canadian Spotlight Artist James MacSwain. And since no Steve Reinke event is complete without a film component, The Images Festival will be screening Steve Reinke’s newest video at 7 pm on April 6 at the Polish Combatants Hall, 206 Beverley at Cecil.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011
The Gladstone Hotel, Art Bar
1214 Queen Street West
Event starts at 3:00 pm
Admission is FREE

THE SHIMMERING BEAST: Steve Reinke is one of the most intriguing artists we’ve got; his scope is enormous, his imagination absolutely singular. His video art – The Hundred Videos, Anthology of American Folk Song, Anal Masturbation and Object Loss – practically define the genre. His drawings, needlepoint and installations are incisive and controversial. And so you might imagine that his writings are equally forceful. You wouldn’t be wrong.

The Shimmering Beast collects Reinke’s best prose pieces. Fiction, or criticism, or personal essays, or theft – each piece is all and none of these. All they have in common is that they all start with a text or work of art and depict some sort of engagement – usually phantasmic – with it.

There’s a monologue by a 19th-century French pathologist, a response to Melanie Klein’s Narrative of a Child Analysis, appreciations of the works of Susan Kealey and Philip Hoffman, thoughts on gay beaches and immigration and an imagined autobiography called ‘History of Small Animals.’

Taken together, they document the process and reach of an artistic mind at the height of its powers. Some funny, some absurd, all oddly poignant, these writings will send your synapses firing in all directions.

STEVE REINKE has exhibited widely, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Centre Pompidou, the Tate, the National Gallery, International Film Festival Rotterdam and the New York Video Festival. He is the co-editor, with Tom Taylor, of Lux: A Decade of Artists’ Film and Video and, with Chris Gehman, the forthcoming The World is a Cartoon: Artists’ Animation at the End of Cinema. He lives in Toronto and wherever he happens to find employment (most recently Chicago and Los Angeles).

JAMES MACSWAIN Atlantic native James MacSwain has made more than 20 films over the last 30 years, and it is with pleasure that Images presents a survey screening of his work for the 24th edition of the festival. His voice has become a pervasive and sophisticated contribution to the experimental film community in this country, often literally as his extensive use of voiceover– and his clever scripts- evince considerable talent as a writer. MacSwain’s particular use of 16mm collage and animation appear deceptively simple, but his films have a lingering depth and poignancy that resists easy categorization. Images is excited to celebrate the work of a senior Canadian artist, but also to situate MacSwain’s practice among the work of so many young filmmakers who operate in a liberated world he helped to create. Images has invited the inimitable Andrew James Paterson to engage MacSwain in a dialogue about the obsessions and trajectories of MacSwain’s practice over the last few decades.

ABOUT THE IMAGES FESTIVAL: The Images Festival is the largest festival in North America for experimental and independent moving image culture, showcasing the innovative edge of international contemporary media art both on and off the screen through film, video, installation art, music and performance.

From Super-8 and hand-tinted celluloid to the latest video art, Images has presented thousands of films and media based projects since 1988. Images is committed to an expanded concept of film and video practice: alongside theatrical screenings, the festival presents groundbreaking live performances, media art installations in galleries across the GTA and new media projects by many renowned Canadian and international artists. We go out of our way and over the edge to provide Toronto with an annual extravaganza of vanguard image making. 

Attended by more than 30,000 people each year, the Images Festival is a critical forum for the independent media arts in Canada and around the world and provides artists with a supportive and professional forum in which to present their projects. For more information and our full archive since 1988 please visit

ABOUT This Is Not A Reading Series (TINARS) offers a ground-breaking theatrical dimension to the appreciation of fine writing. Employing music, comedy, psychodrama, dance, multimedia performance, lectures, dialogue—everything but reading—TINARS investigates the creative process behind literary works.

Publisher Contact: Coach House Books, Evan Munday, 416.979.2217,
Images Festival Contact: Scott Miller Berry, executive director,
This Is Not A Reading Series: Anna Withrow, phone: 416-805-2174,