CHICAGO READER -- Born in 1952, Baldwin has a long history of subverting the mainstream narrative: his early short Stolen Movie (1976) was composed of Super-8 footage he shot off the screens of commercial movie houses, and “Wild Gunman (1978), which screens with Tribulation 99, explodes the western-hero stereotypes that gave birth to the Marlboro Man.
At San Francisco State University in the early 1980s, Baldwin studied under experimental filmmaker Bruce Conner and learned how to create mental associations between radically different images. As a boy, Baldwin had been interested in filmmaking and liked to splice together footage from the Super-8 films, condensed from Hollywood releases, that you could buy at camera stores before the age of video. During the ’80s and ’90s he amassed an archive of some 2,500 celluloid films, most of them procured from schools, libraries and other institutions that were dumping their 16-millimeter collections in favor of VHS. These have become the raw materials for a series of screen provocations, including the vast SF conspiracy of Tribulation 99.