No superhero agency runs on autopilot. It is filled with all kinds of heroes: those who go out and fight crime in a grand display with fantastic costumes, those who stay up late into the night doing amazing things with computers while jacked up on coffee and Red Bull, and those who silently support in the background. Meet the heroes who keep Permanencia Voluntaria running:
Jan Christopher Horak has obtained evil genius level with his massive knowledge of film history. He continues to serve as the Director of UCLA Film and Television Archive and Professor for Critical Studies. He was previously aligned with other film defense organizations serving as Director of Archives & Collections at Universal Studios, Director of the Munich Filmmuseum and Senior Curator, George Eastman House. Recognizing the value of his knowledge, he has worked tirelessly to pass that on by teaching at the University of Rochester, the Munich Hochschule für Film und Fernsehen and the University of Salzburg. Knowing that is not enough he has published 250 articles and reviews in all manner of film and historical subjects in numerous publications world-wide and has authored a dozen books including “Film and Photo in the 1920s” (1979), “Anti-Nazi-Films Made by German Jewish Refugees in Hollywood” (1985), and “Lovers of Cinema: The First American Film Avant-Garde 1919-1945” (1995).
Charles Horak is a cinephile that grew up watching all kinds of movies including our beloved Santo films. His interest in becoming a superhero of film began when as a child he would often deny himself sleep and would choose to watch movies on late night TV. This incredible discipline and devotion to movies continues today and he has expanded his passion by sharing it with the world. In 2005 he became the host of “On Film” and is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association. In 2002 he founded The Film Salon, and in 2008 helped found and became the artistic director of the Plaza Classic Film Festival. He has been a key ally to Permanencia Voluntaria by sharing his years of accumulated film wisdom, key contacts and generously supporting our cause in various ways. When not performing his film superhero work, he is the vice president of a family-owned construction and development firm and raises his three children to be the next generation of heroic cinephiles with the support of his wife.
Archivists without Borders
"Archivists without Borders is as tenacious as rust, as flexible as polyester, as determined as humidity. And like all that, we'll be back!" Steve Seid
By day Peter Conheim is a multimedia artist who performs and records under the name The Jet Black Hair People. But by night he is a film and video curator in the San Francisco Bay Area and seeks to preserve the dying art of the 35 and 16mm projectors. He built a small theater in his basement which his allies know as The Small Back Room where they can hide from the digitization of movies and view film projections, the purest form of screening movies. He has collected about 500 movie prints over the years and grants them asylum to protect them from the dreaded vinegar syndrome, which affects prints made from acetate. But when a film succumbs to the disease he quarantines it to prevent the spread to other movie prints. He seeks to preserve the magical lantern effect that we can only experience as a film projection.
Sean Savage is feared for his archival skills. He aligned himself with the Academy Film Archive in Los Angeles California after studying at New York University and earned his degree in moving image archiving and preservation. The ultimate good guy, he also has been working for non-profit arts organizations for twenty years.
Steve Seid's primary superpower is curating; he tracks down and preserves works that have been considered lost, forgotten, or overlooked with abilities above and beyond the average detective. He allied himself with the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive and has been an unstoppable curatorial force. He has acted as a major team player organizing over a thousand screenings of film, video, and digital media and successfully bringing together works by different generations and contextualizing Bay Area artists with their contemporaries elsewhere. He seeks to pass on his years of accumulated knowledge by teaching video aesthetics and history courses at the University of California, Berkeley, San Francisco State University, the California College of Arts, and the San Francisco Art Institute.
Academy Film Archive Team
Apart from being
Equipo Papel (Team Paper) made record breaking strides in the aftermath of the earthquake in September 2017 and has since become the standard by which all other archivist teams strive to achieve.
Colin Gunckel is another arising genius who has specialized as a historian of Latinx media and art and Latin American cinema. He uses non-conventional research methodology that his arch nemesis would love to get his hands on; he looks at the Spanish language press, exhibition practice, theater publicity, variety theater, novels, star personas, and conceptions of urban space when considering Mexican film culture in early 20th century Los Angeles. When not using his superior powers to write books and articles he is an assistant professor of screen arts and cultures, American culture, and Latina/o Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Meg McClure only just recently joined the ultimate battle for film preservation. With roots in biology and philosophy, she decided to abandon her normal life for that of an archival heroine and moved to Mexico to serve Baticine for a year as a volunteer.
Without our massive team of archivists and specialists who periodically come and visit the archive to lend us their time, skills and expertise, we would not survive. The battle would have been over long ago. Thanks so much to this very important team! We couldn't fight on without you!
Ivón Duran Hernandez
Flor Zarza Mandujano
Maria José Cuevas