International Symposium ‘Contemporary reuse of Amateur Films #1’

Please see here & Programme and Abstracts.

Workgroup ‘Amateur Media Cultures’

Convened by Alexander Stark, Alexandra Schneider, Yvonne Zimmermann and Tim van der Heijden, the workgroup is part of the NECS – European Network for Cinema and Media Studies. Further details are available here

‘Amateur Practices and Technologies of Vision’ Conference, Milano, May 23-24, 2019

The Department of Communication, Arts and Media at the Università IULM is hosting the ‘Amateur Practices and Technologies of Vision’ Conference on May 23-24, in Milano.

For additional information see  Amateur Practices_Program


‘The witchery of [colour] Kodakery’ and British women amateur filmmakers in late colonial period

See the latest blog published by The Eastmancolor Revolution and British Cinema project (1955-85) .

New publication: Amateur Media and Participatory Cultures…

New publication: Amateur Media and Participatory Cultures. Film, Video, and Digital Media by Annamaria Motrescu-Mayes and Susan Aasman (Routledge, 2019)

This book aims to delineate the boundary line between today’s amateur media practice and the canons of professional media and film practice. Identifying various feasible interpretative frameworks, from historical to anthropological perspectives, the volume proposes a critical language able to cope with amateur and new media’s rapid technological and interpretative developments. Building on key research questions and content analysis in media and communication studies, the authors have assessed differences between professional and amateur media productions based on the ways in which the ‘originators’ of an image have been influenced by, or have challenged, their context of production. This proposes that technical skills, degrees of staging and/or censoring visual information, and patterns in media socialisation define central differences between professional and amateur media production, distribution and consumption. The book’s methodical and interdisciplinary approach provides valuable insights into the ways in which visual priming, cultural experiences and memory-building are currently shaped, stored and redistributed across new media technologies and visual channels.


‘As one of the founders of this new field of research, I can vouch that we’ve been all waiting for this type of book on amateur media. The authors have carefully considered the last decades of research done on the theme of amateur media practice, from home movie making to digital and online productions, and raised pertinent theoretical issues as well as opened new research avenues. A timely and important book.’ Professor Roger Odin, Emeritus Professor of Information Sciences and Communication at Paris 3 – Sorbonne Nouvelle.

‘This fiercely original book widens amateur media cartographies by recalibrating with interdisciplinary methodologies, global visualities, and participatory media platforms. It insists amateurism is not marginal, but ubiquitous as its variegated practices migrate across histories, ethics, counter histories, archives, technologies. A massively significant, daring, rigorous, and field-changing intervention into amateur media studies.’ Patricia R. Zimmermann, Professor of Screen Studies, Ithaca College, USA.

More information is available here.

EUP on British history and amateur media

See Edinburgh University Press blog about ‘British Women Amateur Filmmakers‘

Happy New Year and (re-emerging) amateur film archive

Happy New Year!

For those interested in colonial amateur films, please see the new webpage for the former British Empire and Commonwealth Museum’s film archive.

‘British Women Amateur Filmmakers. National Memories and Global Identities’ – new book

New book: ‘British Women Amateur Filmmakers. National Memories and Global Identities’ by Annamaria Motrescu-Mayes and Heather Norris Nicholson (Edinburgh University Press, 2018. ISBN:9781474420730. Also available in eBook)

This is the first book to address the topic of British women amateur filmmakers. The study of amateur filmmaking and media history is a rapidly-growing specialist field, and this ground-breaking book is the first to address the subject in the context of British women’s amateur practice. Using an interdisciplinary framework that draws upon social and visual anthropology, imperial and postcolonial studies, and British and Commonwealth history, the book explores how women used the evolving technologies of the moving image to write visual narratives about their lives and times. Locating women’s recreational visual practice within a century of profound societal, technological and ideological change, ‘British Women Amateur Filmmakers’ discloses how women negotiated aspects of their changing lifestyles, attitudes and opportunities through first-person visual narratives about themselves and the world around them.

Key Features
· Brings expertise in interpreting relevant archive visual material specific to an under-researched film genre: amateur cinematic practice
· Combines newly uncovered findings on women’s amateur film and video-related practice with relevant primary and secondary literature
·  Explores key issues of gender and amateur film practice across various social, cultural and racial contexts

“Packed with keenly researched historical detail and splendidly illustrated, ‘British Women Amateur Filmmakers’ brings to light the fascinating and hitherto hidden history of women’s contribution to amateur film practice.”
Annette Kuhn, Emeritus Professor in Film Studies, Queen Mary University of London

· Annamaria Motrescu-Mayes is an affiliated Lecturer in digital and new media anthropology at the Department of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge. Fellow and Tutor, Clare Hall.
· Heather Norris Nicholson holds honorary research positions at the University of Huddersfield and also at Manchester Metropolitan University.

A 30% discount is available for purchases directly from publisher with the following promotional code: NEW30. Please feel welcome to recommend it to your librarian. Flyer available here British Women Amateur Filmmakers[1]


Family Tales. Small Gauge Stories and Narrations

“Family Tales. Small Gauge Stories and Narrations
Home Movies – Parri, via Sant’Isaia 18-20

Saturday, November 17 – 5.30 pm | Talk / Screening

Last chapter of Family Tales workshop. Started the last June, the course has allowed participants to plunge themselves in the stories hidden in Home Movies Archive films. Sometimes unseizable stories, recalling oral memory of protagonists and witnesses, which have been recovered and brought to light with the aim of making them publicly available. We’ll present a varied landscape: from a Friulian family emigrated to Belgian Congo in the early century, to the families of dock workers from Ravenna, intertwining 9.5mm lyric and elegant images as well as rough super8 which document innovative school experiences from ‘70s.

Curated by Ilaria Ferretti and Chiara Petrucci with the collaboration of workshop participants.”

For further information see Archivio Aperto XI edition

Learning Home Movies. Educational Uses of Amateur and Private Film

“Learning Home Movies. Educational Uses of Amateur and Private Film
Home Movies – Parri, via Sant’Isaia 18-20

Friday, November 16 – 4 pm | Talk

Home Movies, in collaboration with Istituto per la Storia e le Memorie del Novecento Parri, offers a training course designed for teachers working with high school students and focused on research and educational use of unseen and private material preserved at the Archive, of which this talk constitutes the methodological introduction. The urgency of proposing courses that bring the youngsters closer to the history of 20th Century, which, at their eyes, is distant and with no apparent links to the present, is increasingly evident.”

For further information see Archivio Aperto XI edition

© 2010 Amateur Cinema (Media) Studies Network