Quebec City, Summit ot the Americas protest

blah blah blah

(re)Viewing Quebec

3.8 kilometres of fence, 50,000 peaceful protesters, 4,700 canisters of tear gas,
and 6,000 cop crotches.
Fourteen film and video artists respond to the Summit of the Americas
(the FTAA) held in Quebec City in April, 2001. Click here for synopses of the works.

The compilation continues to raise funds for the legal defence of those arrested at the protests through international screenings and sales. Works from this video compilation were shown in 2003 at the Fugitive Images: The Global Visions Video Lounge at the Edmonton Art Gallery. blah blah blah: (re)Viewing Quebec was programmed into the Better Worlds: activist and utopian projects exhibit in 2002 at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre and included in an accompanying catalogue.

All proceeds raised from screenings or sales of this compilation of video works are in support of the
The Libertas Legal Collective
(formerly Q
uebec Legal Defence Fund), a non-profit orgnisation helping those arrested in Quebec City pay for their legal and court costs.

To donate directly to Libertas, send cheques or money orders to:
Libertas Legal Collective
1420 Sherbrooke Ave. West #404
Montreal, QC
H3G 1K5

Tel: 514 262 4746

For distribution information, or to order VHS tapes of the compilation, please contact
V tape.



To contact a member of the collective, order an individual work, or to suggest links to this site,
Click here


"One of the most exemplary aspects of blah blah blah was that it produced community from a range of artists toward a single cause: longtime activists and people who had never attended a demonstration; documentarians and experimental artists; seasoned filmmakers and novice directors. It was also racially diverse. This is significant because racial diversity has so far been lacking in the self-defined anti-globalization movement."
-- Richard Fung,
FUSE Magazine
, Vol.25 #4

Now Magazine ranks the premiere screening of these works as
#6 on the Local Top 10 list of 2001:
"The 14 members include John Greyson, Ali Kazimi, b.h. Yael, Kevin McMahon and Charles Officer, some of the most respected film and video artists in the city. They went to Québec City for the Summit of the Americas protest, shot video, shared it, and produced a collection of sometimes exceptional pieces. But here's the real achievement: they cared enough to go."
-- Cameron Bailey,
NOW Magazine, Toronto December, 2001

Film and Video Work Synopses


The Weekend In Québec
by David Best
5 mins.


Media coverage of the Summit is contrasted with footage shot in the front lines of protest.
Dark Vader
by Karma Clarke-Davis
1.5 mins
Dark Vader is a pseudo commercial collage which uses graphic images and metaphorical references to present a view on Globalization that is both literal and ironic. An expressionistic panoramic digital montage is created using still images taken on site. The soundscape samples the "Darth Vader" march in Star Wars, juxtaposed with traditional drum beats from third world areas such as India, Africa, and Latin America.

Enemies of the State
by Michael Connolly
5 mins

A celebration of the Québec summit protest movement without cops or tear gas.

Extramural Activities
by Julie Fox
5 mins


Close-up impressions of events outside the fence.

Girls With Opinions
by Gisèle Gordon
3.5 mins


Four thirteen year old girls from Québec City offer their take on what the protesters are all about.

by John Greyson
4 mins

Below the belt with the Sûreté.

Documenting Dissent
by Ali Kazimi
6 mins


The impact of the largest peace time security operation in Canadian history on those attempting to document the protests in Québec City.

Gooney Tunes
by Kevin McMahon & Christopher Donaldson
2:17 mins.


137 seconds of TV intelligence.
Why Are You Afraid of Our Voices?
by Lyndsay Moffat
3.5 mins.

Alternating shots of protesters dancing and being gassed set to the tension of a drum and bass soundtrack remind us that there is joy in our struggle and that the mainstream media didn't even get half the story.


Vocal Demonstration
by Charles Officer
4 mins

side by side, i stand inside this bona fide global divide. a rising tide of approximately 70,000 wide. in my mind, through my mind, the realization of a subdivide.

vocal demonstration is a personal reflection, after witnessing an incredibly minute representation of people of colour at the summit of the americas demonstration in qu╚bec city, 2001.

Like a Nice Rubber Gas Mask
by Malcolm Rogge
4.5 mins
"It seems now that while defence apparel and supplies have become necessary for exercising our right to freedom of expression, they have also become a signal to authorities of our political dissent. The fashion of resistance identifies us as targets, even as it is being sold to us." Reprinted from an article by Malcolm Rogge in Lola #10, Toronto.
Ten Seconds of Protest
by Jody Shapiro
2.5 mins
A detailed look at the first ten seconds of police response to the civilian protest in Québec City. A moment of fear.
(of) fences
by b.h. Yael
5:30 mins.

(of) fences provides an impressionistic documentation of a few moments around 'the fence,' along with a meditation on the reasons people came to speak in Québec and what the fence disallowed, precluded, protected, imposed...... the offences of silence.

A french version of this piece is available through V tape.


Related Links

The Council of Canadians public interest group promoting social justice
Cold Mountain, Cold Rivers environmetnal video activist group in Montana
FTAA official Site of the FTAA
The Gas CD benefit CD for the Québec Legal Defence Fund featuring artists such as Ani Difranco, Gil Scott-Heron, Chris Brown, Maude Barlow, David Suzuki & the Tragically Hip
The Peoples' Summit the summit on the other side of the fence
Libertas Legal Collective providing non-profit legal representation for those arrested during the summit informed alternative to mainstream media
Satan MacNuggit alternative media distribution network
Stop the FTAA site maintained by the Alliance for Sustainable Jobs and the Environment
The Toronto Mobilisation for Global Justice a coalition of groups and individuals dedicated to fighting Corporate Globalisation
Toronto Video Activist Collective working to reclaim information & perspective from centralized media sources
View from the Summit NFB Documentary on the FTAA

the blah blah blah
(re)Viewing Qu╚bec

is grateful to have exploited

David Bannerjee
Greg Bennett

Rose Bianchini
Dermot Brennan
Kim Fullerton
Richard Fung
Peter Greyson
Iris Ng
Our hosts in Qu╚bec City
The Radical Cheerleaders
Judy Rebick
Sarah Polley
Kika Thorne
David Wharnsby


This project has been generously supported by:
Charles Street Video
Innis College Townhall
Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto
John Mighton
Trinity Square Video
& V tape


Chretien dismisses protests
"They say to themselves, "Let's go spend the weekend in Québec City, we'll have fun, we'll protest and blah, blah, blah."

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