Over forty years ago, Humphrey Esterhase’s entire filmography of seven underground movies was destroyed while he was travelling in South America. His luggage, containing the only copies of these works, was thrown overboard during a mutiny on a boat he had booked passage on. The incident ended with a number of the mutineers being summarily executed with extreme brutality by thugs hired by the boat’s owner. This butchery took place in full view of the passengers, including Esterhase. Possibly in consequence of this harrowing event, the reclusive Esterhase has not made a film since…
A tape arrived yesterday containing what can only be identified as another piece of video work by my cryptic acquaintance Soltan Karl. And the only identifying feature was the handwriting: the address on the envelope – a tatty white envelope with no padding, a corner of the mini-DV cassette already poking through the paper… He first contacted me in 2009 in consequence of having seen my Youtube videos by accident. No direct praise, of course, but a request to see more of my work because he’s suddenly got more time to get stoned these days and it’s good to have something stupid to watch while doing so. Delighted that someone had finally found a good use for my videos, I posted a stack of DVDs to the specified P.O. Box in Gibraltar - and promptly forgot about him. Two months later, I received a parcel of four NTSC and three PAL mini-DV tapes along with a handwritten note. He was ‘throwing out some old shit’ because things had suddenly become ‘precarious’ for him. He thought I might have fun with some ‘stupid stuff’ he shot while ‘messing around with a camera years ago’…
Anthony Jervis Moran
Anthony Jervis Moran was completely unknown and has only come to light as a result of the research done by independent Rotterdam-based academic Norbert Hax into the post-career of noted ‘60s rogue psychiatrist Robert Bremen who had an obscure association with Moran in late life. This story is a grim tale of woe but also of one of the most remarkable and extreme films never made in Ireland. Had it been made, it would undoubtedly change the way Irish experimental cinema was regarded. Indeed, Hax found the story of Moran so fascinating that he became distracted from his research into Bremen to research Moran.