Screen/Society--"Navajo Talking Picture" (1985) | Arlene Bowman | Native Voices
"Navajo Talking Picture" (Arlene Bowman, 1985, 40 min, Color, Digital)
Film student Arlene Bowman (Navajo) travels to the Reservation to document the traditional ways of her grandmother. The filmmaker persists despite her grandmother's forceful objections to this invasion of her privacy. What emerges is a thought-provoking work which abruptly calls into question issues of "insider/outsider" status in a portrait of an assimilated Navajo struggling to use a "white man's" medium to capture the remnants of her cultural past.
-- This film complements the Nasher Museum exhibition, "Art for a New Understanding: Native Voices, 1950s to Now."
"Bowman herself emerges as a sympathetic character from an absurdist comedy as both her ancestry and film goals elude her." - Steven Mikulan, Los Angeles Weekly
"Unsparingly honest." - Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times