Filmmaker, Visual Artist
Born Edinburgh, Scotland, 1958
Lives in New York, NY
“I have to say it was a great year and the grant from the Foundation really made a big difference. I felt really free to go forward with my ideas, follow my intuitions, experiment, and play!”
Zoe Beloff, November 25, 1998
Zoe Beloff is a filmmaker and visual artist who works with a wide range of media including film, projection performance, installation, and drawing. Each of her projects aims to connect the present to the past so that it might illuminate the future in new ways. Her most recent completed project is The Days of the Commune (2012). She is currently working on a new project called the The IFIF (Institute for Incipient Film) about Sergei Eisenstein and Bertolt Brecht in Hollywood and films they might have made (2015).
Beloff moved to New York from Scotland to study at Columbia University where she received an M.F.A. in Film. Her work has been featured in international exhibitions and screenings at venues including the Whitney Museum of American Art, Site Santa Fe, the Museum of Modern Art in Antwerp, and the Pompidou Center in Paris. She has been working with the Christine Burgin Gallery on a number of artist projects that include books and prints.
Beloff has been awarded fellowships from John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, The Radcliffe Institute at Harvard, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. She is a Professor in the Departments of Media Studies and Art at Queens College, CUNY.
I work with a wide range of media including film, performance, installation, drawing, and writing. I think of myself as a medium, an interface between the living and the dead, the real and the imaginary. Each project aims to connect the present to the past so that it might illuminate the future in new ways.
My work defies categories. I studied art but didn't want to just make aesthetic objects. I turned to cinema to tell stories. My work seeks to represent those on the margins of society, women, the working class, the dreamers, and utopians. I believe the historical materialist must wrest the articulation of history away from the dominant narrative. He or she must side with the losers of history and from there articulate a new perspective.
I think of myself as a showman. Although I read philosophy, I do not want to work only for those in the world of high art but to speak to everyone, to create art that is entertainment and critical thinking.