Six Films around an Exhibition is a film program, curated by Lo schermo dell’arte Film Festival, organized to accompany the exhibition Art Returns to Art, which presents over forty works by thirty-two contemporary artists in the historic rooms of the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence (May 8-November 4, 2012).
promoted by the Galleria dell’Accademia
organized by Lo Schermo dell’Arte Film Festival
in collaboration with Odeon Firenze
May 23 to 25, 2012
Odeon Firenze, Piazza Strozzi, Florence
starting at 9 pm
All films are shown in original language, with Italian subtitles
Crows from Dreams
by Akira Kurosawa, Japan, 1990, 12′
This is the 5th of the 8 episodes in Kurosawa’s film, Dreams. In Crows, a young painter (the director’s alter-ego) finds himself transported into one of Vincent Van Gogh’s paintings, searching for the great master. He wanders through landscapes painted by the Dutch artist (an extraordinary special effect obtained through digital technology) until he finds him (played by Martin Scorsese), on a path through a wheatfield. A pistol-shot is heard. A murder of frightened crows flies away. Brought back to reality, the protagonist finds himself in a museum, in front of “Wheatfield with Crows Under a Stormy Sky”, the last picture Van Gogh painted before committing suicide.
The Belly of an Architect
by Peter Greenaway, UK/Italy, 1987, 118’
American architect Stourley Kracklite arrives in Rome, accompanied by his young pregnant wife, to organize an exhibition dedicated to the architect Etienne Louis Boullée, the subject of his expert connoisseurship. Several of Rome’s symbolic buildings, including the Pantheon, Hadrian’s Villa at Tivoli and the Vittorio Emanuele II monument, as well as several of Boullée’s incompleted utopian projects, form the backdrop of the descending parabola of the protagonist, who’s obsessed with the terminal illness that has stricken his midsection.
by Alexander Sokurov, Germany/Russia, 2001, 96’
The TV camera takes the spectator on a journey through time and the artworks collected in the Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg. The guide is an 18th century French diplomat. An extraordinary production (a cast of 4.500 actors and crowd-scene players, 3 orchestras, 22 assistant directors, 50 electricians), the film consists of a single tracking digital shot. Through the Palace’s salons, halls and chambers, the visitors encounter the people who once lived there, Peter the Great, Catherine II, Nicholas II, last of the Romanovs, and the tourists of our time.
Jan Fabre au Louvre
by Wannes Peremans, Belgium, 2008, 48’
In 2008, for the first time in its history, the Louvre Museum took on contemporary art. The film follows Belgian artist Jan Fabre through the preparatory stages of the exhibition L’ange de la métamorphose, installed in the rooms devoted to painters of the Nordic School. An incisive, penetrating look at the artist’s work-processes, the documentary is also a peek behind the scenes at one of the world’s most important museums.
Francis Bacon. The Brutality of Fact
by Michael Blackwood, USA, 1985, 75’
From his studio in Chelsea, Francis Bacon answers questions asked by his friend, the art critic David Sylvester. The film is the result of a recording made of this extraordinary encounter, which took place over three days, and remains a fascinating document on the artistic vision of one of the greatest masters of the second half of the 20th century.
Seven Easy Pieces by Marina Abramović
by Babette Mangolte, USA, 2007, 93’
Filmed over 15 years, the film is an intense portrait of the French-American artist, protagonist of the first solo show ever dedicated to a woman at MoMA in New York (1982), and now of a major exhibition at the Museo di Capodimonte, Naples. The archetypes of his dreamy and perverse world emerge from a series of interviews, while her works and installations are investigated through suggestive images that the words help to enhance and amplify in a strong visual process that involves the viewers.