The Golden Gate Bridge is retrofitted into an ear-rattling musical instrument. A bucolic pasture under a bright azure sky invites viewers to experience utopian scenes with frolicking, human-like plants and animals. A tree sprouts a character whose face is stolen by a wild dog and who consequently tramps through in the wilderness while struggling to regain his vision. Yep, it’s time for the sensory-jarring experimental film fest, Optic Nerve, where the visuals and story lines combine for an inherently surreal celluloid celebration. Now in its 14th edition, the wildly popular event at the Museum of Contemporary Art (770 NE 125th St., North Miami) returns bigger and edgier than ever. Featuring 17 film and video shorts, all running less than five minutes in length, Optic Nerve presents works by 15 artists and two artist collectives, including talent from South Florida as well as New York City, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, and other distant locales. Considered among the premier festivals of its kind in America, Optic Nerve drew more than 240 entries this year and represents a wide variety of genres in narrative and nonlinear filmmaking, ranging from the abstract to the comedic. The films screen Friday at 7 and 9 p.m., during which the museum’s executive director and chief curator, Bonnie Clearwater, will announce which one has been purchased for MOCA’s permanent collection.
Fri., Sept. 14, 7 & 9 p.m., 2012