"Book of Days," the latest experimental film by Meredith Monk, and her first feature-length movie, will be presented by the Utah Media Arts Center on Wednesday, Dec. 19. It is a typically eccentric examination of modern-day fears paralleled with superstitions among residents of a small village in the year 1350.
Monk is a composer, singer, choreographer and filmmaker who has won two Guggenheim Fellowships, a Brandeis Creative Arts Award, three Obies, two Villager Awards, a Bessie for Sustained Creative Achievement, the 1986 National Music Award and 16 ASCAP Awards for musical composition."Book of Days," to be presented on videotape, is full of obscure imagery and symbolism, and is definitely an out-of-the-mainstream work. The most interesting aspects come from certain images and dialogue sequences where interviewers ask simple questions of ignorant medieval peasants. Anachronisms abound, apparently to prompt the audience to think about whether we've really come so far today.
Fans of Monk, or of generally hard-to-figure experimental film and video, will feel right at home here. Others should be forewarned.
"Book of Days" will be screened Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Salt Lake Art Center auditorium, 20 S. West Temple. Admission is $5, with discounts for students and Media Center members. For further information phone 534-1158. - Chris Hicks