Devil In The Flesh, When Op Art Electrified The Film World @ MAMAC In Nice, France

In the early 1960s, kinetic art established itself in Europe with a double principle: destabilising perception and democratising art. Optical illusion paintings, reliefs with light and motion, and disorientating environments shake perception. Christened “Op Art” in 1964, this avant-garde art was met with resoundingly popularity and success, so much so that it was commandeered in entirely new ways. While the advertising agencies, designers and major fashion house seized its intoxicating shapes, cinema gave Op Art an unexpected angle. An art of movement and of light, it was both a predecessor, able to sublimate its visual games, and a follower, which seeks to plunder it through its desire for modernity. From dramas to thrillers, filmmakers and decorators drew a language and themes from it, producing a whole range of “re-uses” in the scenery and the plot – scenes of hoaxes and dread, sadistic characters or zany improvisers, but also extreme experiences: scenes of hallucination, psychosis.

Exhibition immersed the visitor in this passionate story between two arts, punctuated by mockery and misunderstanding, reciprocal sublimation, pop or baroque manifestations as well as collaborations and plagiarism. Through nearly 30 films, 150 works and documents, it explored the origin and the taboos of this predatory fascination, and considers what cinema revealed to Op Art of its own nature. In such, it released the spirit of a decade ruffled by modernity, thirsting for emancipation and haunted by the ghosts of the war. This era, full of contradictions, created a completely new aesthetic culminating in the fruitful friction between the visual arts and the cinema. Devil in the flesh, When Op Art electrified the film world is on view through September 29 at MAMAC 1 Place Yves Klein, Nice. photographs courtesy of MAMAC

A New Documentary Explores The Legendary Week Long Conversation Between Hitchcock and Truffaut

In 1962, Alfred Hitchcock and a 30-year-old François Truffaut sequestered themselves in a windowless Hollywood office for a weeklong conversation. The result: the seminal book “Hitchcock/Truffaut,” published a half century ago, dissecting every film Hitchcock had made until then, illuminating his masterful techniques, making the case for the popular director as an artist, and influencing generations of filmmakers. Kent Jones brings “the Bible of Cinema” to invigorating life. He interviews filmmakers whose work has been profoundly influenced by Hitchcock—Martin Scorsese, David Fincher, Richard Linklater, Olivier Assayas, and many others. The documentary will hit theaters this December.  

Deneuve

BAMcinématek Deneuve
BAMcinématek Deneuve

Stunningly beautiful, mysterious, ageless, and possessed by a peerless elegance, Catherine Deneuve is one of the most legendary actresses in all of cinema. Over the course of her 40 year career—from early work with film giants like Luis Buñuel, François Truffaut, Roman Polanski, Agnès Varda, and Jacques Demy to later films with celebrated contemporary cineastes like François Ozon, Arnaud Desplechin, Raoul Ruiz, and more—Deneuve has played muse for Europe’s greatest filmmakers, channeling her remarkable beauty and compelling eroticism to create some of cinema’s most iconic roles. Presented in collaboration with the Cultural Services of the French Embassy and Institut Francais, a 25-film tribute to the actress being held at the Brooklyn Academy represents only a sliver of the over 100 films she has appeared in during her career. Deneuve runs from March 4 to March 31.  www.bam.org