Design and Performance in the Hybrid Documentary: “Jabe Babe – A Heightened Life” Work in Progress – 14 April 2005

Title: Design and Performance in the Hybrid Documentary: “Jabe Babe – A Heightened Life” Work in Progress
Location: AFC Theatre – 150 William St, Woolloomooloo
Description: WHAT:

Writer/Director/Producer Janet Merewether, together with members of her creative team, will screen extracts of her work in progress Jabe Babe – A Heightened Life and discuss the process of conceptualising and designing this new hybrid documentary commissioned by SBSI and produced with the assistance of the AFC and NSWFTO.


AFC Theatre – 150 William St, Woolloomooloo


Thursday 14 April 2005 – 6.45pm


Suggested Donation $5

by April 10:
Seats reserved till 6.45pm only.


Jabe Babe – A Heightened Life explores the personal and medical experiences of 31 year old Jabe Babe. A tall girl with a tall story, Jabe Babe measures six foot two inches (188cm), works as a dominatrix and has a life threatening genetic condition called Marfan Syndrome.

An active participant in the filming process, Jabe works and lives on the margins, defying society’s expectations of the ‘normal’ feminine body and sexuality. She is both the documentary subject and a performer as she spins tales of her heightened experience of life. In a television landscape dominated by non-fiction actuality, Jabe Babe – A Heightened Life experiments in interweaving fiction and non-fiction forms: observational DV footage and studio-based performance sequences shot on Super 16mm.

This hybrid documentary also references 60s B-grade cinema and medical photography through its reconstructions, inhabiting the heightened technicolour world of the tall woman, the outsider, to provoke questions about society’s desire for sexual, visual, and genetic conformity.

Janet Merewether is a film-maker and digital media artist who also works as a curator, lecturer, and designer of motion graphics and film titles. Her award winning short films and videos, including ‘Cheap Blonde’, ‘Contemporary Case Studies’, and ‘Short Before the Movie’ have screened in numerous festivals internationally, including the 2001 New York Film Festival, Tampere Film Festival and the 2003 New Directors/New Films at MoMA New York.

Jabe Babe
Click for larger view

Janet’s short film, ‘Palermo – ‘History’ Standing Still’ received a Dendy Award (General) at the 2004 Sydney Film Festival, as well as being nominated for an ATOM Award (Best Experimental), AFI Award (Best Editing in a Non-Feature) and FCCA Award (Best Short Film). ‘Palermo – ‘History’ Standing Still’ has recently been selected for the 2005 Tampere International Short Film Festival in Finland and the 2004 New York Film Festival Avant-garde programme.

Jabe Babe
Click for larger view

Retrospectives of Janet Merewether’s film and media art work have been screened at the Arsenal Cinema (Freunde der Deutschen Kinemathek) Berlin, 2002, Boston Cinematheque, 2001, the Seoul Women’s Film Festival, Korea, and the Women Make Waves Festival Taipei 2003.

Moderator: Maree Delofski
Start Time: 18:45
Date: 2005-04-14