MAGNUM. 10 SEQUENCES
How cinema inspires photographers
23.04.08 – 07.09.08
1.- Fact sheet 2
2.- Presentation 3
3.- Exhibition plan 4
4.- The 10 photographers 14
5.- The catalogue 17
6.- Related activities 19
7.- CVs of the curators 21
8.- General information 23
1.- Fact sheet
MAGNUM. 10 SEQUENCES How cinema inspires photographers, is an exhibition co-produced by the CCCB and the Cinémathèque française, in collaboration with Magnum Photos and sponsored by El País.
Diane Dufour, special projects director at Magnum Photos.
Serge Toubiana, CEO of the Cinémathèque française.
4 April 2007 – 30 July 2007
Barcelona Centre for Contemporary Culture (CCCB)
23 April 2008 – 7 September 2008
Room 3, CCCB
Lluís Pera / Espais Efímers
Montalegre, 5 08001 Barcelona
Tel : 93 306 41 00
Fax: 93 306 41 01
The Barcelona Centre of Contemporary Culture presents the exhibition MAGNUM. 10 SEQUENCES How cinema inspires photographers, an exhibition co-produced by the CCCB and the Cinémathèque française, in collaboration with Magnum Photos and sponsored by El País.
The exhibition invites 10 photographers from the agency MAGNUM, representing the different generations and different schools of documentary photography, to evoke the influence of cinema in their imagery. The results are ten original works, including photographs and multimedia installations, in which the photographers show how a particular producer, film or scene has left an imprint in their psyche or in their work.
In parallel to this exhibition, a series of activities are being held which explore the relationship between cinema and photography: the workshop “Film, capture, exhibit” targeted at all audiences between 6 May and 31 July, and the series of conferences and projections “Under the Influence” from 25 June to 23 July.
The exhibition, which was displayed in the Cinémathèque française between 4 April and 30 July, can be visited at the CCCB between 23 April and 7 September 2008. The curators are Diane Dufour, special projects director at Magnum Photos and Serge Toubiana, CEO of the Cinémathèque française.
“The image to come” is an expression coined by Henri Cartier-Bresson to define filmmaking. According to Cartier-Bresson, cinema is always what comes next: not the image that is being viewed or projected onto the screen, but the next one, taken as a progression.
Could the opposite also hold true, that cinema acts as an “image that came before”, inspiring the photographer while he captures reality? How does cinema infiltrate the photographer’s imagination? To what extent does the photographer project his dreams, fantasies, and obsessions onto the world?
Ten photographers from the Magnum Photos agency, from different generations, representing various trends in documentary photography today. They revealed to us how a director, film, or scene left an imprint in the labyrinth of their psyche and how this imprint in turn affected or influenced their work. Taking on board the legacy of another view, or even better: vindicating it. Deeply buried images superimpose themselves on the film of life: a way of framing what happens, “under influence”.
Transition, infiltration, and superimposition narrow down the complicity between the two media. Cinema creates the illusion of the real so that the spectator cannot doubt its verisimilitude; photography draws on the imagination to re-establish the truth of lived experience. Standing at the frontier between the true and the false, the certain and the uncertain, the just and the unjust. The ultimate possibility for recounting a reality that is mobile, evasive, on which we cannot get a re-take.
“We know that under the image which is revealed, there is another one, more faithful to reality, and under this other one, there is yet another, and on it goes. Right up to the image of absolute reality, mysterious, that no one will ever see.” (Michelangelo Antonioni)
Diane Dufour and Serge Toubiana
3.- Exhibition plan
Paisà by Roberto Rossellini (1946)
As an adolescent, Abbas saw Roberto Rossellini’s feature film in a film club in Algeria, which at the time was being ravaged by the war of independence. It immediately became one of his favourite films.
In the exhibition, he juxtaposes extracts from Paisà (shot in the Italy of the 1940s) with his photographic record in black and white of the Iranian revolution, as seen from the inside. Scenes as varied as they are tragic explain the convulsive life of Teheran between 1978 and 1980 (riots, lynching, protests, arrests and other civil war events).
A series of 18 photographs of identical format is presented, forming a continuous line. Two large-format video projections, showing clips from the Rossellini film, run above and below this line of images. The clips, projected mute, explicitly play on similarities in theme or aesthetics with the photos surrounding them. It is as though the very essence of humanity surpassed the time and geographical differences between the Rossellini film and Abbas’ photos, both testimonies of the helplessness of their country of birth. These are individuals rebelling against the collective destiny of a nation on the verge of chaos, with a backdrop of ambiguity as we step from documentary into fiction (Abbas) and from fiction to documentary (Rossellini).
“When I was a young student, I discovered Paisà in the film club I was a member of. I watched many films but this one moved me. It talks of heroism, nationalism and war. A war that was lived intensely from day to day. It became a fetish film for me, reinforcing my decision to become a journalist and subsequently a photographer. At that time, the documentary dimensions of Rossellini’s film moved me greatly: what differentiated this film from all the others was its realism.”
Teheran. 11 February 1979. Revolutionaries Paisà by Roberto Rossellini (1946)
stop a suspected member of the SAVAK, ©Films sans frontières
the Xa’s political police.
© Abbas /Magnum Photos / Contact
This section contains images with a high sexual content that may offend some viewers. Admission is not allowed to visitors under 18 years of age.
Antoine d’Agata wrote a ‘documentary screenplay’ inspired by Oshima’s Empire of the Senses, then shot it during a four-month stay in Japan between September and December 2006. He himself is the principal character.
The film, called Aka Ana, lasts around 20 minutes and was shot on digital video. It is made up of moving images and photographs taken during filming: a private, autobiographical diary exploring the transgression, joy and violence of his nights in Japan.
The idea of the installation is to combine still images with animated images, thereby creating a puzzle that traces once again a sensorial experience. The two regimes of images form a sole material and merge to form a single flow.
As a photographer, I cannot deny reality with impunity, or just affirm it. I cannot, in fact, escape it, nor can I subject myself to it. The Only way out: a slow agony under the stamp of conscience and irony.
I renounce rhetoric and I give critical information on my transgressions, between the form and the material, the spirit and the flesh, the look and the experience.
©Antoine D’Agata / Magnum Photos / Contact
Bruce Gilden juxtaposes extracts from American film noir movies with his urban portraits taken in New York, which are in keeping with the tradition of street photography.
The visitor stands before a wall composed of portraits and two large-format screens where clips from the films are projected.
When the clip comes to an end, the image is frozen (giving the impression that it is a still shot), whilst, one after the other, different tracks are played with dialogues, sounds and film-noir music, located and directed at the Bruce Gilden images.
As you see, we’ re flying over an island.
This city. A particular city.
And this is a story of a number of people. And a story also of the city itself.
It was not photographed in a studio. Quite the contrary, Barry Fitzgerald, our star, Howard Duff, Dorothy Hart, Don Taylor,
Ted de Corsia and the other actors, played out their roles on the streets, in the apartment houses, in the skyscrapers of New
And along with them, a great many thousand New Yorkers played out their roles also.
This is the city as it is.
Hot summer pavements, the children at play, the buildings in their naked stone, the people without makeup.
Prologue to Naked City, Jules Dassin (1948)
Extract chosen by Bruce Gilden for his installation
New York, 1989 Pick up on South Street by Samuel Fuller (1953)
© Bruce Gilden /Magnum Photos / Contact ©Twentieth Century Fox. All rights reserved
Harry Gruyaert, a leading exponent of colour urban landscape photography, presents, in the form of projections, photographs taken over several decades in different places (Paris, Beijing, Los Angeles, Marrakech and Benares). The sequence of photographs follows a harmonious rhythm and the image relations are clearly poetic. The sequences divided by locations shatter and, as a result, the subjective links lead the visitor to sense a kind of suspense.
The size of the screen enables the artist to simultaneously project different photos, like a contact sheet suspended in space. Benches have been placed in front of the screen to enhance viewing.
Amongst these images of such intense composition, brief clips of Antonioni films glide surreptitiously in slow motion, around the idea of the solitude of man in the city. Clips chosen for their unnerving strangeness, where nothing can be seen easily: fragments, surprising places, distant characters who wander around spaces of colour, uncertain sounds that cannot be discerned as either noise or music.
The installation commences with the project of a film produced by Harry Gruyaert in the 1960s, under the formal influence of Antonioni, about a woman he had once loved.
In Deserto Rosso, (1964) Antonioni painted entire streets in an attempt to create a very specific emotion. Sometimes I tell myself it would be much easier to just repaint this wall like Antonioni… But I think that I would lose this instantaneous miracle of the breathtakingly unexpected, of this very physical phenomenon of the photo that suddenly appears. Finally, it is, without a doubt, in this conflict between a pseudofiction and a pretended reality, where I feel at my best.
London, United Kingdom, 2004 L’avventura by Michelangelo Antonioni (1960)
©Harry Gruyaert /Magnum Photos / Contact © Société cinématographique Lyre
Inspired by the Alain Resnais book Repérages (1974)
Gilles Peress has created a book of photographic location research in New York for a fictional film yet to be made.
The entire project is a homage to Alain Resnais’ book Repérages (1974), which occupies a privileged place in his personal mythology, since it was the first book of photographs Gilles Peress saw.
To say locations is to say plot. For Gilles Peress, the plot of this fiction film is open and the narrative is rather up in the air, yet organised around a series of actual events. One of the storylines is the theme of New York post-9/11. A city where a threat remains present and where chaos is omnipresent.
Gilles Peress displays his documentary and poetic photos in vertical strips. Like unravelled film strips on the wall. In short, he pushes photography as close as possible to cinema.
What we are living after 9/11 is real, evidently. People have been tortured and killed. But all of this has been done so that we can live this reality like the refined Lady from Shanghai by Orson Welles. As though there were mirrors all around us and we were all shooting at these mirror. More than ever, we are under the impression that we are surrounded by madness, illusions and false pretexts. We feel a vertigo before History that comes from its fictional nature.
Boogie Boy Series, New York, 2006 Repérages by Alain Resnais (1974)
© Gilles Peress / Magnum Photos / Contact © Éditions du Chêne
When he was still living in the USSR, Gueorgui Pinkhassov attended the filming of Stalker (1979) by Andrei Tarkovski. After this key contact in 1986 his photographic work, which at that time was just starting out, gained true significance. Gueorgui Pinkhassov remembers the filmmaker through the portraits he took of him at different stages of his life, up to his death, exiled in Paris.
These photographs show us Tarkovski at work, but also in the forest, at home, or holding discussions with his father, the poet Arseni Tarkovski. The clichés that show Tarkovski are regrouped in the form of photomontages (photographic plates), as though there were chess tables or collages. Around these, an accumulation of other documents give us the sensation that we are standing before a sacred family mausoleum: there are screens showing clips from Tarkovski films (The Mirror, 1974, for example), and also unpublished photographs taken at the beginning of the 20th century in the room of Tarkovski’s godfather, Lev Gordnung. On the wall in front of this altar, the first photographic works of Gueorgui Pinkhassov are displayed individually (abstract images in sepia, very “tarkovskian”).
(...) With Solaris (1972) by Andrei Tarkovski I had the impression, for the first time in my life, that I was receiving a personal message… In a state of shock, I had the feeling that Tarkovski was talking directly to me, that he was revealing my most hidden secrets, ones I didn’t even know existed.
I had felt a similar feeling before: a mixture of clarity, sweet sadness, lightness, and also solemnity, before the revelation of a great mystery. The altar in Gante by Van Eyck, the silvery light of Vermeer, Bach’s fugues, the hunters in the snow by Bruegel, all of this had remained etched in my memory, but in an uncertain, divided way. The link that had to bring my cracked impressions together into a single breath, a single movement, a harmony, was waiting for me beyond a threshold I had yet to cross. The films of Andrei Tarkovski were that threshold.
Snow. Moscow, Russia, 1979 The Mirror by Andrei Tarkovski (1975)
© Gueorgui Pinkhassov /Magnum Photos / Contact © Mosfilm Studio
Camera buff by Krzysztof Kieslowski (1979)
This British photographer has chosen to return to the city of his childhood (Leicester) and revisit his family’s home movies, filmed by his father, an amateur, in the times of industrial prosperity in the region. Mark Power brings these movies face to face with colour photographs taken in this same city for the “MAGNUM 10 How cinema inspires photographers” exhibition. Large format photographs, in floating layout, almost out of focus, like a symbol of his blurry memories.
And all under the influence of the Kieslowski film Camera buff (Amator). Through the figure and questions of the lead character of this film, Power clearly questions his attitude as an artist. Always torn between his solitary profession and his emotional life. Before entering the main hall, the visitor sees a text by the photographer on the wall, in the form of an epigraph, alongside small screens that are showing a clip from Camera buff. The visitor then enters a large space dedicated to Power’s photographs. In the middle of this space, an actual installation is presented. Clips from the super 8mm home movies shot by his father are projected in slow motion on a liquid surface at the bottom of a dinghy. At the end of each thematic sequence, the water at the bottom stirs up. Then, the visitor must wait for the water to calm and the surface to become still again in order to continue watching the clips.
On 19 September 2005, my beloved mother died. I had not been back to Leicester, the city in the centre of England where I grew up, for twenty years. Sitting in my van in front of our old house, watching the comings and goings of its new occupants, I felt a great sadness. Behind my lens, I saw the unpredictable nature of our memory, its beauty, its fragility, the lies it explains to use and those in which we want to believe so desperately. Then, rather like Filip, the protagonist of Kieslowski’s film Camera buff, I turned the lens on myself. The blurry photographs, vague in the places of my childhood, only represent my truth. It was not a cathartic experience. It didn’t help me. But through the profound sentiment of loss, perhaps I reached a point in which objectivity, or the world as it appears to us, is no longer enough.
Camera buff Krzysztof Kieslowski (1979)
© Mark Power / Magnum Photos / Contact © MK2
Kings of the road by Wim Wenders (1976)
Alec Soth, a photographer of modern American life at its most striking but also most vacuous and disturbing, proposes a poetic illustrated report on the abandoned movie theaters of Texas. His unsentimental vision echoes that of Wim Wenders in 1976 about a wandering projectionist in the German Federal Republic at a time when cinemas were disappearing one by one.
Soth takes new images of these movie theatres and associates these colour pictures to black and white clips from Kings of the road, evoking a road movie theme.
Soth’s images are developed in large format and laid out linearly. A clip of the Wenders film is projected on loop.
In the mid-west where I grew up, there were not many movies on video. However, the video club in my small hometown had all of Wim Wenders films. You could even find Kings of the road, one of his first, darker films. This lyrical and sinuous road movie completely satisfied my adolescent thirst for evasion…
In October of 2006 I travelled for thousands of miles around Texas, I slept in desolate motels, I ate hamburgers and I photographed thirty-six movie theatres and one funeral chapel.
Avenue Theater, Dallas Texas, 2006 Kings of the road by Wim Wenders (1976)
© Alec Soth/ Magnum Photos / Contact © Reverse Angle Production
Elephant by Alan Clarke (1988)
Born in Belfast, Donovan Wylie contrasts his personal path and his experience living in Northern Ireland with the cutting film by Alan Clark, Elephant, which consists of a succession of inexplicable, gratuitous deaths.
Donovan Wylie presents different types of documents in a rectangular space, behind which the film Elephant is screened.
The documents chosen by Donovan Wylie are numerous: his photographs of the Maze prison juxtaposed against different documents recovered from his family (photo albums, journal cuttings, home movies…). His profusion may seem vertiginous, but the idea is to classify them visually by type on the walls forming the room. In this space what prevails is an amalgamated impression of banality and horror, intimacy and history.
“I was born in Belfast in 1971, to a Protestant father and a Catholic mother. My great-uncle on my father’s side died a few years ago. In his house, I found a bounty of archives he had kept over the years: scrapbooks, photo albums and 8mm films. In these documents, taken one after the other, a collusion and a tension can be perceived between that which is public and that which is private, individual and collective destination, banal everyday life and the breakout of violence… These antagonisms are the centre of my work.
Before these objects –memories of a family, of a community, of a conflict– my images of a highly symbolic place in the history of Northern Ireland: the Maze prison, photographed from 2002 until the end of 2003, for 100 days.”
Scrapbook with press cuttings from the Northern Ireland of the late sixties to the early eighties. This Album belongs to the artist’s great-uncle and it gathers the snippets that reflect his experience of the conflict and that of his community.
© Donovan Wylie/Magnum Photos / Contact
The cinema of 1930s Shanghai
Patrick Zachmann has been working for eight years on the Chinese diaspora across the globe. He juxtaposes some of these images with extracts from films made in Shanghai that have subliminally shaped his visual universe. Zachmann discovered these films during a festival in Turin in Italy, but it was only later, when he saw these melodramas for a second time, that he became aware of the influence that they had exerted on his way of seeing and photographing Chinese slums and dives.
Patrick Zachmann restores this period of latency and this work of the subconscious. The stage device is a three-screen triangle. Two screens are showing a montage of films, whilst the third proposes a photomontage. The images (stills and animations) are enveloping, and their appearance/disappearance embodies this idea of latency. The voice of Patrick Zachmann guides the visitor in his apprehension towards the installation.
In 1982 I discovered the cinema of 1930s Shanghai in Turin during the first European film festival dedicated to Chinese cinema. Straight away these atmospheres of night-time and the underworld, slums and opium smokers amazed me… In 1986 I began an 8-year photographic project on China and Chinese communities. Once I was out on the field, I had no specific image of the films, but instead the reminiscence of a series of gestures, lighting, situations…
Today, when I delve into the melodramas of Shanghai, I am shocked to see the similarities and the connection between my own photos and certain scenes. The photos of the students in Tiananmen Square recall a scene from The Road, a 1934 film about a coolie uprising. The photos of the clandestine joints in New York or Kaohsiung resemble the gambling scene in The Goddess. As if I had always been searching in the Chinese world for an obsessive recollection of these films.
Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 1987 The goddess by Wu Yonggang (1934)
© Patrick Zachmann / Magnum Photos / Contact © All rights reserved
4.- The 10 photographers in the exhibition
Abbas recreates, in the image of Paisà (1946) by Roberto Rossellini, the sequence of “his” Iranian revolution in 1979, seen from the inside, between the shared exaltation of the earlier times and the doubts of a popular movement confiscated by the mullah. Just as Rossellini films, Abbas photographs: directly and openly.
Born in 1944, Abbas is of Iranian origin. He lives and works in Paris. From 1970 to 1982 he covered wars, revolutions and major social movements in the third world. In 1983 he began a series of photographic frescos: Mexico until 1986; the resurgence of Islam from 1987 to 1994; Christianity from 1995 to 2000; animistic rituals around the world from 2000 to 2002. One of this most renowned books, Iran Diary 1971-2002, is a critical interpretation of the history of his country, photographed and written in the form of a personal journal.
Abbas has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1985.
Antoine D’Agata makes the ultimate break: to become a filmmaker. The photographer is the hero of a documentary script living in Japan. “To document what I live, and live every situation with the purpose of documenting it”. Here experience is the bearer of truth, the arbitrariness that is evidence.
Born in Marseille in1961, he lives and works in Paris. He started out in photography in 1990 at the International Center of Photography in New York, under Larry Clark, Nan Goldin, etc.
He returned to France in 1993 and took a break from photography between 1993 and 1996. In 1998 he published his first work, Mala Noche. In 2004 he produced his first video short, Le Ventre du Monde. His latest work, Manifeste, was published in 2005.
Antoine D’Agata has been an associate member of Magnum Photos since June 2006.
Bruce Gilden uses an artifice that distorts perception – the close up – to capture a disquieting world: that of classic American cinema-noir, that of artifices, sneers, low punches, traitors.
Born in Brooklyn in 1946, he lives and works in New York. Bruce Gilden, mainly self-taught attended night classes at the New York School for Visual Arts. His first project took him to New Orleans during the Mardi Gras. In 1992 Bruce Gilden published Facing New York, a study on New York urban life. In Go, published in 2000, he explored the dark side of Japan through the Yazuka, groups of Japanese homeless and motorcyclists. His latest work, Beautiful Catastrophe was published in 2005.
Bruce Gilden has been a member of Magnum Photos since 2002.
Harry Gruyaert throughout his photographic works, lingers on the moments of doubt, of pause, of silence. Between Gruyaert and Michelangelo Antonioni, the similarities are striking : people who have lost their identity, women in desolate places, areas of colour that convey ephemeral sensations.
Born in 1941 in Antwerp, he lives and works in Paris. From Belgium to Morocco, through India and Egypt, he has been recording for more than 20 years the subtle chromatic vibrations of the lights of the East and the West. Adept in long-term projects undertaken without commercial pressure, his work is made public thanks to exhibitions and books he himself creates meticulously. Lumières Blanches, 1986; Morocco, 1990; Made in Belgium, 2000; Rivages, 2004 are some of his most important works.
Harry Gruyaert has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1986.
Gueorgui Pinkhassov goes back over the steps of Andrei Tarkovski, a filmmaker he knew, admired and photographed in a “mysterious and unattainable process that carries on as if it were outside of us, in our subconscious, and takes shape in the walls of our soul” (Andrei Tarkovski).
Born in 1952 in Russian, he later became a naturalised French citizen. He lives and works in Paris. Gueorgui Pinkhassov took an interest in photography since adolescence. From 1969 to 1971 he studied at the VGIK Film School in Moscow. Thanks to his work for the international press, and more specifically for Geo, Grand Reportage and The New York Times Magazine, he took his camera around the world. Gueorgui Pinkhassov published Side Walk in 1999, a project performed in colour about the streets of Tokyo.
Gueorgui Pinkhassov has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1994.
Gilles Peress creates between New York and Baghdad a “narrative space, an evolution, a kind of unravelled film”. Repérages, the book by Alain Resnais, serves as the theme to set the scene and images for a film that has yet to come.
Born in 1946 in France, he now lives and works in New York. After studying at the Institut d’Études Politiques in Paris and at the University of Vincennes, Gilles Peress had his photographic debut in 1970. He has travelled to Bosnia, Rwanda and Northern Ireland. These works are included in a project about civil war entitled Hate my Brother. He photographed the Iran of 1979 and became well established after other projects such as a photographic report on the legacy left behind by the libertarian Simon Bolivar.
Gilles Peress has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1974.
Mark Power considers that photography is immersing oneself in the anguish of painful memories. He recalls his deceased mother, and the places of his childhood in Leicester in the heart of England in the 1970s. In mind all the while, the protagonist of the 1979 Krzysztof Kieslowski film Camera buff.
Born in Harpenden in 1959, he lives and works in Brighton. After studying art at the University of Brighton, Mark Power discovered his passion for photography. He published his first book, Shipping Forecast, in 1997. After that he undertook several major projects in England: Millennium Dome, The Treasury Project, A System of Edges. In parallel to this, Mark Power works at photography professor at the University of Brighton. Since 2005 he has been carrying out a major project about Poland.
Mark Power has been an associate member of Magnum Photos since 2005.
Alec Soth travelled thousands of miles around Texas looking for abandoned movie theatres. A road trip following in the footsteps of the two lead characters of the film that marked his teenage years: Kings of the Road, 1976, by Wim Wenders.
Born in 1969 in the United States, he lives and works in Minneapolis. Alec Soth forms part of a young generation of American photographers. His outstanding work has been awarded several prizes: The McKnight and Gerome Foundations and the Santa Fe Prize for Photography in 2003. His work is on show in different private and public collections and at the prestigious Gagosian Gallery in New York. His works Sleeping by the Missisipi, 2004 and Niagara, 2006, have been published by Steidl.
Alec Soth has been an associate member of Magnum Photos since June 2006.
Donovan Wylie, born in Belfast at the height of the conflict between the Catholic and Protestant communities, presents objects and photographs relating to members of his family. These documents mixing the individual and the communal, the private and the political, acquire extra resonance alongside the Alan Clark’s scathing 1988 film Elephant.
Born in 1971 in Belfast, Northern Ireland, he lives and works in London. Donovan Wylie discovered photography at a very young age. In 1992 he was a follower of a group of travellers in England, dubbed the ‘new age travellers’ by the Thatcher regime. He completed this photographic report in 1996 and published a book entitled Losing Ground. Afterwards, he undertook a series of large personal projects, most of them on the subject of Northern Ireland. In 2004, he published The Maze, a significant work on the well-known prison in Northern Ireland.
Donovan Wylie has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1997.
Patrick Zachmann becomes aware, through this exhibition, of the obsessive echo of Shanghai’s 1930s cinema in his photographic work on Chinese dispersion. Throughout all these years of research, without premeditating it, his work “retains pieces of reality that find reason inside him”.
Born in 1955 in Choisy-le-Roi, he lives and works in Paris. Patrick Zachmann’s works on long-term photographic reports presenting the complexity of the communities whose identities and culture he brings into question. For eight years, he has been dedicating himself to a study on the dispersion of the Chinese people throughout the world, which he has exhibited in ten Asian and European countries. Between 1996 and 1998 Patrick Zachmann made the short film La Mémoire de mon père, and after that he made a feature-length film on the disappearance of memory traces. He is currently working on the universe of the night in a series of major cities around the world.
Patrick Zachmann has been a member of Magnum Photos since 1990.
5.- Exhibition catalogue
Co-edited by MagnumSteidl/ Cinémathèque française
April 2007, 288 pages. Two editions: French and English.
Including texts by the photographers presented in the exhibition: Alain Bergala, Matthieu Orléan, Olivier Assayas and the two exhibition curators, Diane Dufour and Serge Toubiana.
An absent image pursues the image
“We never see at thing the first time, but rather the second time: when it is related with another thing”, wrote Pavese in his journal. The Italian writer has always sustained the idea that it is only possible to really see something if there is an initial image –that came before, in another place– and that forewarns us in the present, enabling us to distinguish a new image inside what is real, rendering us watchful and sensitive. “Seeing things for the first time” does not exist. All that we recall, perceive, is always for the second time.
(...) For a long time we have wanted to believe –and many still believe or pretend that they believe– that the vocation of a photographer capturing “reality” is to remain anchored to the present moment in the world and to bring a ontologically unique, native image to a standstill in the flow of sensations. But what if we look closer, is this not false evidence? Does there not also exist in photography a dimension of absence? The camera is instant and mechanical but is the one pressing the button not a person with a memory and a past that influences his/her present perceptions? Photography is also a “mental act”.
(...) Cinema has always been a major source of these mental images that sometimes act as a receiver and a filter for our perception of the present. One of the strengths of film is its capacity to infuse in us, in our visual and emotional memory, images that will live with us for a long time, sometimes without knowing it, because sometimes we ourselves to not even realise which pictures from an the entire flow of images will stay with us and affect our perceptions. As in real life, the images that have the strongest power to invade us are not necessarily those that we are aware have “marked” us. Their imprint obeys mechanisms were the subconscious often plays the most beautiful role.
Excerpt from the catalogue The Image to Come How cinema inspires photographers
Co-edited by MagnumSteidl / Cinémathèque française
24 seconds per image
(...) It would be wrong of us to believe that still images (because of their still nature) do nothing but slice reality, stop the duration. It is deceptive to say that an exhibition merely displays trophies, without the movement and the shadow cast by the tip of the frame. The documentary photographers of Magnum with whom we conceived The Image to Come work above all on multiplicity. The contact sheet, like Pinkhassov, defines a spiritual territory (that of Andrei Tarkovski), thanks to the face of the filmmaker returning time and time again to the sheet (in profile, slightly displaced, to the right, to the left), always different and yet strangely loyal to himself and to that which he sees with love and admiration. The series, like Wylie, who photographed every cell of The Maze prison, like so many other mental pieces, detailing only the colour of the curtains, playing with the conceptual and at the same time exciting impression of déjà-vu, coupled with a political conscience. The book, like Zachmann who builds its progression, page by page, as though it were a police investigation: and who says that the detective does not also possess his follies and his amnesias?
(...) To fill this emptiness between the two images, D’Agata, Gruyaert and Zachmann have even created films using their images, in short, they have taken on the risks of cinema which, in ghostly fashion, has become a practice of its own. Their photos are projected, not hung. No walls, no developing. Instead of cinema’s 24 images per second, they are shown at 24 seconds per image, a change in the way of viewing, of learning to watch by forcing this anti-natural timing. The infranarration that begins here is just a game of fitting shapes with feelings, sounds with cuts, faces with shadows. In this dreamlike way in which randomness and nonsense play their role, the images of these documentary photographers, fed by fictions, are like so many other impulses of the memory, what transforms memories into stories, testimonies into inventories, forgetfulness into ellipsis. And reality, sometimes even brutal, into abstraction.”
Excerpt from the catalogue The Image to Come How cinema inspires photographers
Co-edited by MagnumSteidl / Cinémathèque française
6.- Related activities
Film, capturE, exhibit
From 6 May to 31 July
This workshop invites us to explore cinema, photography and the frontier that joins and separates these arts. Organised into groups, the participants will venture out to film a series of scenes that will later be transformed into still images. Finally, using a selection of these images, they will form a photographic project that will be exhibited in a major collective work that will be started off by five photographers and continued by all the workshop participants (youths and adults).
Look! (workshop at the CCCB)
This workshop will begin with a visit to the exhibition and reflections on photography, cinema and their relationship. Then work will be done on a series of concepts and values that are fundamental to all photographic and cinematographic production: framing, colour, lighting, composition, the construction of a coherent project, etc.
Groups of 4-6 participants will be formed and, equipped with a video camera and a accompanied by a workshop supervisor, they will go out and film shots of the city. During filming attention will be given to the richness of the images shot with a view to future captures.
Capture! (workshop at the CCCB)
Work involving screening and discussing the shots filmed. This workshop will use computers to extract stills (captures) of the most rich and intense moments in photographic terms. Finally, a sequence will be created based on the captures made.
Exhibit! at the CCCB
Each group will exhibit its selection of captures on a panel located at the end of the exhibition, forming relations and connections with the stills of the other groups. Thus, the projects of all the workshop participants will create a collective work which will be, at the same time, an exploration of the powers of capturing and of the cartography of the city of Barcelona.
Dates and times: From 6 May to 31 July, from Tuesday to Sunday, from 10.30 am to 2.30 pm. Saturday and Sunday, if participants wish to have more time to film, the second part of the workshop (capture and exhibit) can be done from 4 to 6 pm.
Information and enrolment: 93 306 41 00, CCCB ticket office and email@example.com
Price of workshop: €3 per person / Free to the Friends of the CCCB
UNDER THE INFLUENCE
From 25 June to 23 July 2008
How does an artistic affiliation materialise? How does the influence of cinema in photographic work come about? This series of conferences and projections looks for answers to this mystery based on the direct experience of five photographers and artists who have explored these mirror of creation in their own work. Each one of the speakers draws, from the perspective of their artistic work, the bridges between a previous film and their work, thus establishing a multiple portrait about the construction and the meaning of the images.
All sessions are scheduled to take place in the CCCB Auditorium at 7.30 pm. Each session will be comprised of an opening speech by the artist and then the screening of the selected film.
With the participation, amongst others, of Donovan Wylie, Mark Power and Ignasi Aballí.
7.- CVs of the curators
Special projects director at Magnum Photos, Diane Dufour has been curator for several exhibitions, such as “Turkey by Magnum, from Capa to D’Agata” at the Istanbul Museum of Modern Art (2007) and “Euro Visions” at the Pompidou Centre (2005), with Quentin Bajac. As director of Magnum Photos from 2000 to 2006, she has set up and coordinated more over a hundred exhibitions around the world and has contributed to enriching several collections, such as that of the Lhoist Group. She is currently dedicating her efforts to the forthcoming inauguration of a space dedicated to documentary photography in Paris, expected to take place in 2008.
Magnum Photos was founded in 1947 by Henri Cartier-Bresson, Robert Capa, George Rodger and David Seymour, four artists convinced of the photographic medium's capacity to capture world events and heighten public awareness.
By creating Magnum, they made possible the total independence indispensable to their commitment. Choice and length of assignments, selection of photographs, ownership of negatives and control of copyright and circulation: all the prerequisites for the status of author/artist were met.
Drawn to the agency's energy and sharing the same ethic, other photographers joined them, the result being one of the world's most innovative and respected creative collectives.
Always on the spot on every continent, they homed in on the crucial events of our time: on conflicts and revolutions, but on everyday life as w ell, and leading figures from the arts. Thus fragments of our collective memory are raised to the category of iconic images, widely broadcast by the international press.
At once eyewitnesses and artists, Magnum members openly assert a dual identity transcending the codes and divisions that mark the media and the contemporary art scene. From Henri Cartier-Bresson's "decisive moment" to Raymond Depardon's "unguarded" ones, from Gilles Peress's "documentary archaeology" to Lise Sarfati's "inner landscapes", from Josef Koudelka's "constructed poems" to Martin Parr's "consumerist snaps", their distinctive visions also find expression in books and exhibitions, inspiring younger photographers in turn.
Magnum Photos now numbers sixty photographers, all equal members of the cooperative and sole masters of their individual and collective destiny.
CEO of the Cinémathèque française. Born in Tunisia, Serge Toubiana was a journalist and film critic with Cahiers du cinema, a magazine he directed from 1981 to 2000. Chief representative for four years, alongside Alain Crombecque, of the association Premier siècle du cinéma, he is the author of several books on cinema, such as a biography of François Truffaut with Antoine de Baecque (Gallimard, 1996) and a highly-renowned book on the filmmaker Amos Gitaï (Cahiers du cinéma, 2003). He has also written a report on film heritage for the French Ministry of Culture and Communication (Toute la mémoire du monde, 2003). His career as a produced includes a documentary feature film, François Truffaut: Portraits volés (Un Certain regard, Cannes 1993), directed by Michel Pascal, and Isabelle Huppert, une vie pour jouer (MK2TV, 2001). He was a producer with France Culture until 2004 and editorial advisor with MK2 between 2001 and 2002. Serge Toubiana has been CEO of Cinémathèque française since May 2003.
THE CINÉMATHÈQUE FRANÇAISE
The Cinémathèque française was founded in 1936 by Henri Langlois, is the living memory of cinema. Its extraordinary international heritage consists of 40,000 films (some of which are extremely hard to find) dating from the birth of cinema to the present day. It also houses cinematographic equipment, such as costumes, models and sets.
Since the autumn of 2005 the Cinémathèque française has been housed in a building designed by architect Frank Gehry at 51 Rue de Bercy. It has become the living centre of film culture, in a neighbourhood of Paris that is in the midst of development, bringing forth a new and varied cultural offer, directed at a broad audience.
At Bercy, the Cinémathèque proposes a diversified film offer with four projection rooms; large temporary exhibitions in a magnificent 600 m2 space (“Renoir / Renoir”, “¡Almodóvar: Exhibition!”, “Le Cinéma expressionniste allemand, splendeurs d’une collection”, “L’Image d’après, le cinéma dans l’imaginaire de la photographie”, “Sacha Guitry, une vie d’artiste”); a permanent exhibition, “Passion Cinéma”, conceived based on the best pieces of its collections, training workshops for children and adults; meetings and film colloquiums; a media library where the public can consult archives and documents on the history of cinema; a bookshop and a restaurant.
8.- General information
23 April – 7 September 2008
From Tuesday to Sunday and bank holidays: from 11 am to 8 pm
Thursday: from 11 am to 10 pm
Closed: Sundays that are not bank holidays
Wednesdays that are not bank holidays and group visits: €3.30
Free admission: under 16s, unemployed, Friends of the CCCB and every first Wednesday of the month.
Discount admission on Wednesdays that are not bank holidays for all senior citizens and students: €3.30
Guided tours of the exhibitions
In Catalan: Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday at 6 pm. Saturday, Sunday and bank holidays, at 11.30 am.
In Spanish: Thursday at 6 pm and Saturday at 11.30 am.
CCCB – www.cccb.org
CCCB Press Office
Mònica Muñoz – Irene Ruiz – Lucia Calvo
Montalegre, 5 – 08001 Barcelona
93 306 41 23 / 93 306 41 00
firstname.lastname@example.org - email@example.com