At Land

Vintage Viewing: Maya Deren, Experimental Eccentric


A student of journalism and political science at Syracuse University, Deren was politically engaged. Her master’s, however, in English and symbolist poetry, point to her contrasting impulses towards abstraction and the poetic. Touring and performing across the USA with the Katherine Dunham Dance Company, Deren met the Czechoslovakian filmmaker Alexander Hammid in Los Angeles, and produced her first and best-known experimental film in collaboration with him: ‘Meshes of the Afternoon.’