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New York filmmakers create 'Psychedelic' movie

By Jennifer Lee Preyss
July 2, 2014 at 2:02 a.m.

Bianca Butti, left, leans in close to the computer to read a film clip title as she and Lily Gold work to edit a film they are currently calling the "Psychedelic Marfa Film" at the Victoria TX Indie Film Fest offices. The filmmakers described the film, which started shooting in April, as "an abstract, experimental film."

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For more information on New York filmmakers Bianca Butti and Lily Gold or their "Psychedelic Marfa Film," visit psychedelicmarfafilm.com.

The door of the Lost Horse Saloon swings open, and light from the noon hour creeps through the darkened space.

At night, the bar will be bustling with cocktail and whiskey-infused chatter.

But the bar is closed now, open only to Bianca Butti and Lily Gold's filmmaking crew, a team of various artists of various talents who traveled many hours to Marfa to be a part of the young filmmakers' nonlinear film project.

Gathering around an open area of the bar, Butti and Gold rolled camera as Bianca Casedy sets up her cello and sat behind a vintage microphone. Rebecca Wright, another vocalist in the mix of spectators, join Casedy in the circle.

Singing "Tumbleweed," an aching melody darkened by the instrument's serious strings, the song stirred onlookers to begin swaying and dancing around them.

"The film is made up of so many moments just like that. ... Everyone was standing around crying," said Butti, 33, of Brooklyn, N.Y. "There is no story line; nothing is planned. ... We wanted to see what we could put together from a collection of these random moments of life."

Dubbing the film "Psychedelic Marfa Film" until they can settle on an official title, the New York-based directors and producers, which also includes Bryn Mckay, describe the film as a collection of artists exacting their talents on screen in Marfa earlier this year in an entirely unplanned, un-sequenced narrative.

"It will be open for interpretation, and we hope we do get to hear what people think about it," she said. "This is the thing I love to do the most - to be experimental with ideas and narratives. I like to mix everything together."

During the past several months, Butti and Gold have resided in Texas, filming in Marfa before traveling to Victoria to edit the footage at the Victoria TX Indie Film Fest offices in downtown Victoria.

They plan to enter the film in the Marfa Film Festival next year as well as VTXIFF.

"We don't really have any big goals for the film. We just wanted to make it," Butti said.

The women, who are partners in life and business, said the film allowed them to explore their creative passions together, combining a network of artistic gifts such as dance, sculpture, photography and filmmaking.

"I definitely wouldn't be making this film if I hadn't met Bianca," said Gold, 29, discussing her experience as a first-time director. "But I'm an artist. I move through mediums, whether it's as a filmmaker or choreographer, painter or sculptor. I enjoy new mediums of making art."

The collaboration has been a rewarding one for the couple, who said they plan to continue making films in the future.

"It can be hard sometimes working together, but we enjoy it," Gold said, grinning at Butti. "It's been a good experience."

When Butti and Gold finish editing, slated for later this year, they said they'll return to New York and begin the process of thinking up their next project.

There are already a few ideas on tap, they said.

"They won't always be like this one," Butti said about future films. "We plan to make many different projects in the future - with linear story lines and scripts."

As for "Psychedelic Marfa Film," they said it's been a magical journey of random artistic expression and creation, one not likely to be matched in the future.

"It was fun. It was hard," Butti said. "It was so many different things."

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