A photo of Alexis Krasilovsky and a still image from "Valium Blues"

Alexis Krasilovsky

Class of 1984
School of Film/Video (Experimental Animation) MFA

I remember the first West Coast Women’s Art Conference, organized at CalArts in 1972. I wrote a brochure summarizing the activities. The ones that were most unforgettable to me were Faith Wilding’s haunting performance poem, “Waiting”, and a room whose walls were hung with breasts at Womanhouse. Meeting Judy Chicago and Mimi Shapiro, who ran the Feminist Art Program together, was life-changing. My sister Jessica transferred from Wesleyan to be part of that Feminist Art Program, and I returned to CalArts for its MFA program in Experimental Animation in 1983. CalArts had a lot of problems being fair to women students back then. I still have a scar on my hand from the student who threw a broken glass at me, trying to get me to stay away from using the television studio. And the faculty had to have a special faculty meeting to decide whether to let me use the 16mm camera equipment on location, even though I was already a member of the camera unions both in L.A. and N.Y. But I finally managed to make my MFA thesis film (“Exile”) in 1984, which aired nationally on PSB, and went on to make several award-winning films. Ironically, it’s now that I’m in my 70s that my CalArts studies have proven to be the most satisfying, as I’ve been making more and more experimental films, incorporating animated photocollages, which are screening worldwide. Hear! hear! for CalArts’ Jules Engel and Christine Panushka and their Experimental Animation Program! (Photo of Alexis Krasilovsky by Harry Portwood, Jr. aka Three, 1984; Still from “Valium Blues” [1983] featuring Mark Mars).