Category Archives: Estate

France Culture Podcasts – Conversations on Chris Marker

We have been following with appreciation the podcasts of France Culture on the occasion of the phenomenal Sept Vies d’un Cinéaste exhibition/retrospective, conversations that touch on Chris Marker’s life, friendships and wisdom in a way that the written word has a harder time achieving – the Costa-Gavras conversation is exemplary in this regard. There is an intimacy to the spoken voice that comes through vividly, and the questions posed by Albane Penaranda are always on target.

To state the obvious: all France Culture podcasts in the Chris Marker series are in French, and rapid spoken French at that. Repeat listenings are recommended. We thank France Culture for allowing the exporting of iframe audio player code, so these podcasts can be shared on the web. All quotations below are copyright © France Culture and taken from the articles that accompany the podcasts, at www.franceculture.fr under the rubrique Les Nuits de France Culture.

These valuable supplements to the current exhibition put us in proximity with the co-creators of the exhibition / retrospective, Christine van Assche and Raymond Bellour, with the young Marker himself – like Benjamin, making early forays into radio as yet another medium of expression – and with his close friend and fellow cineaste Costa-Gavras. The three van Assche & Bellour episodes demonstrate their deep familiarity with and lucid insight into Marker’s work, the awe they hold it in, as well as the enormity of the Marker archive at their/our disposal now at the Cinémathèque française.

Qui était Chris Marker

En décembre 2012, pour “Une vie, une œuvre”, Virginie Bloch-Lainé rassemblait les morceaux du puzzle Marker. Ecrits, photographies, films, vidéos, dessins et mondes virtuels l’univers de Chris Marker était raconté par Claude Lanzmann, Régis Debray, Raymond Bellour, parmi d’autres.

Arles 2011 Chris Marker exposition - Photo Gérard Julien, afp

“Jusqu’à la fin des temps”, un essai radiophonique de Chris Marker

L’écriture, plus que l’image, a occupé les premières années du parcours de Chris Marker. À la revue Esprit notamment, dans laquelle il publia de nombreux articles entre 1947 et 1955. Il y eut aussi la poésie, un roman, Le cœur net, en 49, et en 52 un essai sur Jean Giraudoux. Tout naturellement, le texte, l’écriture, menèrent Chris Marker à plusieurs reprises vers les studios de radio : Solitude, diffusée en 1943, à la radio nationale, une pièce radiophonique écrite sous le pseudonyme de Marc Dornier… L’Aube noire, en 1949, sur Paris-Inter, dans le cadre d’une émission de poésie… Toujours en 1949 et sur Paris-Inter, Cirque de notre vie dans la collection Les argonautes… Et aussi, La Peur à la radio : le fantastique, en 1950, une émission de science-fiction encore sur Paris-Inter, écrite par Chris Marker, Jean Basset et Pierre Schaeffer.

Jusqu’à la fin des temps, l’émission de la RDF est un essai dramatique d’un peu moins de vingt minutes que Chris Marker signa en 1949. Un récit empreint d’inquiétude, au temps d’un après-guerre irréel, dans lequel, comme dans un mauvais rêve, le monde menace de s’abîmer.

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“Chris Marker était quelqu’un qui, impulsivement, écrivait, on a l’impression qu’il écrivait plus vite qu’il ne pensait”

A l’occasion de l’exposition qui lui est consacrée à la Cinémathèque française, Albane Penaranda propose une “Nuit Chris Marker” avec des archives et des entretiens, pour commencer avec Raymond Bellour et Christine Van Assche. Entretien 1/3 avec les co-commissaires de l’exposition.

Nuit Chris Marker – Entretien avec Raymond Bellour et Christine Van Assche

A l’occasion de l’exposition qui lui est consacrée à La Cinémathèque française, Albane Penaranda propose une “Nuit Chris Marker” avec des archives et des entretiens. Deuxième partie de l’entretien avec Raymond Bellour et Christine Van Assche. Entretien 2/3 avec les co-commissaires de l’exposition.

Nuit Chris Marker – Dernier entretien avec Raymond Bellour et Christine Van Assche

A l’occasion de l’exposition qui lui est consacrée à La Cinémathèque française, Albane Penaranda propose une “Nuit Chris Marker” avec des archives et des entretiens. Troisième et dernière partie avec Raymond Bellour Christine Van Assche (co-commissaires de l’exposition).

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Costa-Gavras : “Sur un film Chris Marker ne voulait pas être le chef, il voulait être parmi les créateurs, cela c’est exemplaire”

Entretien avec le Président de La Cinémathèque Française, Costa-Gavras, qui était un des plus proches amis de Chris Marker. A l’occasion de l’exposition qui lui est consacrée et de la “Nuit Chris Marker”, il revient sur cette amitié et sur l’oeuvre de Marker.

Costa-Gavras, Ami de Chris Marker et Président de la Cinémathèque française

Christine van Assche & Raymond Bellour, les co-commissaires de l’exposition

Cinémathèque française Unveils Encyclopedic Chris Marker Retrospective Program

Cinémathèque Chris Marker Exposition Poster

Dans les Salles | Films, Rencontres, Conférences, Spectacles

Du 3 au 27 Mai 2018

Source: Exposition Chris Marker, les 7 vies d’un cinéaste – La Cinémathèque française

SÉANCE D’OUVERTURE

Ambassade (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1975 CM Je 3 mai 20h00
Jetée (La) Chris Marker / France / 1962 CM Je 3 mai 20h00
Statues meurent aussi (Les) Alain Resnais, Chris Marker / France / 1953 CM Je 3 mai 20h00

LES FILMS

Amérique insolite (L’) François Reichenbach / France / 1958 Lu 21 mai 14h30
Chris Marker : Never Explain, Never Complain Jean-Marie Barbe, Arnaud Lambert / France / 2016 Lu 21 mai 20h00
Cinétracts Jean-Luc Godard, Alain Resnais, Chris Marker / France / 1968 Me 23 mai 19h00
Description d’un souvenir Dan Geva / Israël / 2005 Sa 26 mai 21h00
Deux mémoires (Les) Jorge Semprún / France-Espagne / 1972 Lu 21 mai 17h00
Fond de l’air est rouge (Le) Chris Marker / France / 1977 Sa 5 mai 20h15
Jetée (La) Chris Marker / France / 1962 CM Je 24 mai 19h30
Joli mai (Le) Chris Marker, Pierre Lhomme / France / 1962 Ve 4 mai 21h00
Kashima Paradise Yann Le Masson, Benie Deswarte / France / 1973 Lu 28 mai 15h00
Level Five Chris Marker / France / 1996 Lu 7 mai 19h00
Loin du Vietnam Jean-Luc Godard, Joris Ivens, William Klein, Claude Lelouch, Alain Resnais / France / 1967 Di 27 mai 21h30
Mémoires pour Simone Chris Marker / France / 1986 Sa 26 mai 15h00
Moindre geste (Le) Jean-Pierre Daniel, Fernand Deligny / France / 1970 Ve 18 mai 17h15
Olympia 52 Chris Marker / France / 1952 Ve 4 mai 17h00
On vous parle de Prague : Le Deuxième procès d’Artur London Chris Marker / France / 1969 CM Sa 26 mai 15h00
Owl Gets in Your Eyes Chris Marker / France / 1994 CM Lu 7 mai 19h00
Première année (La) Patricio Guzmán / Chili / 1971 Lu 28 mai 17h15
Regard neuf sur Olympia 52 Julien Faraut / France / 2013 Ve 4 mai 19h00
Sans soleil Chris Marker / France / 1982 Sa 5 mai 14h30 Me 9 mai 16h30
Souvenir d’un avenir (Le) Yannick Bellon, Chris Marker / France / 2001 CM Je 24 mai 19h30
Spirale (La) Armand Mattelart, Jacqueline Meppiel, Valérie Mayoux / France / 1975 Lu 28 mai 19h15
Statues meurent aussi (Les) Alain Resnais, Chris Marker / France / 1953 CM Lu 14 mai 19h00
Tombeau d’Alexandre (Le) Chris Marker / France / 1992 Di 6 mai 18h30
Toute la mémoire du monde Alain Resnais / France / 1956 CM Lu 14 mai 19h00
Un an de télé vu par Guillaume Chris Marker / France / 2007 Di 27 mai 17h30
Volcan interdit (Le) Haroun Tazieff / France / 1948 Me 16 mai 14h15

COURTS MÉTRAGES

La Charnière (enregistrement audio) Sa 5 mai 18h15
20 heures dans les camps (Le) Chris Marker / France / 1993 CM Di 27 mai 19h45
2084 Chris Marker / France / 1984 CM Je 24 mai 15h45
À bientôt, j’espère Chris Marker, Mario Marret / France / 1967 CM Sa 5 mai 18h15
…À Valparaiso Joris Ivens / Pays-Bas, Chili / 1962 CM Ve 11 mai 19h30 Di 13 mai 19h45
A. K. Chris Marker / France / 1984 Di 13 mai 17h30
Agnès de-ci de-là Varda Agnès Varda / France / 2008 Di 20 mai 19h30
Astronautes (Les) Walerian Borowczyk / France / 1959 CM Sa 26 mai 18h30
Bataille des dix millions (La) Chris Marker / France-Belgique / 1970 Di 13 mai 21h45
Berlin 90 Chris Marker / France / 1990 Sa 19 mai 17h15
Berliner Ballade Chris Marker / France / 1990 CM Sa 19 mai 17h15
Brûlure de mille soleils (La) Pierre Kast / France / 1965 CM Sa 19 mai 15h00
Casque bleu Chris Marker / France / 1995 CM Di 27 mai 19h45
Chat écoutant la musique Chris Marker / France / 1990 CM Ve 25 mai 19h30
Chats perchés Chris Marker / France / 2004 Je 10 mai 21h30
Classe de lutte René Vautier, Pierre Lhomme, Joris Ivens, Jean-Luc Godard / France / 1969 CM Sa 5 mai 18h15
Description d’un combat Chris Marker / France-Israël / 1960 Sa 26 mai 18h30
Détour Ceausescu Chris Marker / France / 1990 CM Sa 19 mai 17h15
Dimanche à Pékin Chris Marker / France / 1956 CM Je 17 mai 17h30
Django Reinhardt Paul Paviot / France / 1958 CM Je 17 mai 17h30
E-CLIP-SE Chris Marker / France / 1999 CM Sa 19 mai 17h15
From Chris to Christo Chris Marker / France / 1985 CM Ve 25 mai 19h30
Guillaume Movie Chris Marker / France / 2007 Di 20 mai 19h30
Hommes de la baleine (Les) Mario Ruspoli / France / 1956 CM Je 17 mai 17h30
Jouer à Paris Catherine Varlin / France / 1962 CM Sa 19 mai 15h00
Jour de tournage Chris Marker / France / 1969 CM Di 20 mai 17h30
Junkopia Chris Marker / France / 1981 CM Je 24 mai 15h45
Kino Chris Marker / France / 2011 CM Je 10 mai 21h30
Leila Attacks Chris Marker / France / 2006 CM Di 20 mai 19h30
Lettre de Sibérie Chris Marker / France / 1957 Di 20 mai 21h45
Matta ’85 Chris Marker / France / 1985 CM Di 13 mai 17h30
Mer et les jours (La) Raymond Vogel, Alain Kaminker / France / 1958 CM Ve 11 mai 21h30
Metrotopia Chris Marker / France / 2008 Di 20 mai 19h30
Morning After (The) Chris Marker / France / 2008 Di 20 mai 19h30
Mystère de l’atelier 15 (Le) Alain Resnais, André Heinrich / France / 1957 CM Di 20 mai 21h45
Mystère Koumiko (Le) Chris Marker / France / 1965 Ve 11 mai 19h30 Di 13 mai 19h45
Narita : le printemps de la grande offensive Chris Marker / France-Japon / 1978 CM Ve 25 mai 19h30
Ni pour ni contre, bien au contraire Anne Papillault, Jean-François Dars / France / 1981 CM Je 24 mai 15h45
On vous parle d’Amérique Latine : Le Message du Che Paul Bourron / France / 1968 CM Di 20 mai 17h30
On vous parle de Flins Guy Devart / France / 1970 CM Ve 25 mai 21h15
On vous parle de Paris : Maspero, les mots ont un sens Chris Marker / France / 1970 CM Ve 25 mai 21h15
On vous parle du Brésil : Carlos Marighela Chris Marker / France / 1970 CM Ve 25 mai 21h15
On vous parle du Brésil : Tortures Chris Marker / France / 1969 CM Ve 25 mai 21h15
On vous parle du Chili Chris Marker / France / 1973 CM Ve 25 mai 21h15
Overnight Chris Marker / France / 2011 CM Je 10 mai 21h30
Petite ceinture Chris Marker / France / 1994 CM Sa 19 mai 17h15
Puisqu’on vous dit que c’est possible Chris Marker / France / 1973 CM Je 24 mai 15h45
Regard du bourreau (Le) Chris Marker, Leo Hurwitz / France / 2008 Di 20 mai 19h30
Rotterdam-Europort Joris Ivens / Pays-Bas / 1966 CM Ve 11 mai 19h30 Di 13 mai 19h45
Septembre chilien Bruno Muel, Théo Robichet / France / 1973 CM Sa 19 mai 19h30
Si j’avais quatre dromadaires Chris Marker / France-République fédérale d’Allemagne / 1966 Di 13 mai 21h45
Siècle a soif (Le) Raymond Vogel / France / 1958 CM Ve 11 mai 21h30
Sixième face du Pentagone (La) Chris Marker, François Reichenbach / France / 1967 CM Di 20 mai 17h30
Slon Tango Chris Marker / France / 1990 CM Ve 25 mai 19h30
Solitude du chanteur de fond (La) Chris Marker / France / 1974 Ve 11 mai 21h30
Stephan Hermlin Chris Marker / France / 1997 CM Sa 19 mai 17h15
Stopover in Dubai Chris Marker / France / 2011 CM Je 10 mai 21h30
Surface perdue (La) Dolorès Grassian / France / 1965 CM Sa 19 mai 15h00
Tchaïka Chris Marker / France / 1994 CM Sa 19 mai 17h15
Tempo risoluto Chris Marker / France / 2011 CM Je 10 mai 21h30
Théorie des ensembles (La) Chris Marker / France / 1991 CM Ve 25 mai 19h30
Train en marche (Le) Chris Marker / France / 1971 CM Sa 19 mai 19h30
Un maire au Kosovo Chris Marker / France / 1999 CM Di 27 mai 19h45
Une journée d’Andreï Arsenevitch Chris Marker / France / 1999 Di 20 mai 19h30
Vivarium (Le) Gérald Calderon / France / 1958 CM Je 17 mai 17h30
Vive la baleine Chris Marker, Mario Ruspoli / France / 1972 CM Sa 19 mai 19h30

L’HÉRITAGE DE LA CHOUETTE

L’Héritage de la chouette est une série documentaire en treize épisodes : treize mots de racine grecque que Chris Marker décortique pour connaître l’héritage de la Grèce antique sur le monde moderne. Des États-Unis au Japon, il a baladé sa caméra là où tout mot prend sens, il a rencontré des hellénistes, des philosophes, des logiciens, des hommes politiques, des artistes et a confronté leurs discours aux mémoires des cinémathèques.
« Par le détour de la Grèce antique, L’Héritage de la chouette se propose de jeter un peu de lumière sur les sources de notre civilisation, et du même coup sur sa mortalité. On peut y trouver plusieurs choses : un projet de ce qu’aurait pu être une télévision portée par le même esprit d’innovation que le cinéma à ses débuts, un programme d’enseignement socratique, un serial (chaque chapitre se terminant sur une question laissée en suspens), un lexique markérien, la suite d’une conversation, à deux ou à plusieurs (parfois même un monologue), menée au fil des années, une énumération comme celles de Sei Shônagon (« Choses qui ne font que passer : le printemps, l’été, l’automne et l’hiver »), ou encore une autre manière d’aborder une filmographie difficilement organisable, tant les catégories sont dans les films dé- ou retournées. » (Bernard Eisenschitz)

Héritage de la chouette, épisode 01 : Symposium ou les idées reçues (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 15h00
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 02 : Olympisme ou la Grèce imaginaire (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 15h00
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 03 : Démocratie ou la cité des songes (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 15h00
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 04 : Nostalgie ou le retour impossible (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 15h00
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 05 : Amnésie ou le sens de l’histoire (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 17h30
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 06 : Mathématique ou l’empire des signes (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 17h30
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 07 : Logomachie ou les mots de la tribu (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 17h30
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 08 : Musique ou l’espace de dedans (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 19h45
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 09 : Cosmogonie ou l’usage du monde (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 19h45
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 10 : Mythologie ou la vérité du mensonge (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 19h45
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 11 : Misogynie ou les pièges du désir (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 22h15
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 12 : Tragédie ou l’illusion de la mort (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 22h15
Héritage de la chouette, épisode 13 : Philosophie ou le triomphe de la chouette (L’) Chris Marker / France / 1989 CM Sa 12 mai 22h15

LES FILMS DE SA VIE

Ailes (Les) William A. Wellman / Etats-Unis / 1926 Je 17 mai 14h30
Annonce faite à Marie (L’) Alain Cuny / France-Canada / 1990 Me 16 mai 16h00
Aveu (L’) Costa-Gavras / France, Italie / 1969 Me 23 mai 21h00
Bonheur (Le) Alexandre Medvedkine / URSS / 1934 Di 6 mai 21h00
Cuirassé Potemkine (Le) Sergueï M. Eisenstein / URSS / 1925 Ve 4 mai 15h00
Espoir (L’) André Malraux / France, Espagne / 1938 Me 9 mai 17h15
Fusils (Les) Ruy Guerra / Brésil / 1964 Sa 26 mai 14h30
Henry V Laurence Olivier / Grande-Bretagne / 1944 Me 23 mai 14h00
Hiroshima, mon amour Alain Resnais / France, Japon / 1958 Ve 25 mai 14h30
Maison est noire (La) Forough Farrokhzad / Iran / 1962 CM Ve 4 mai 15h00
Merveilleuse vie de Jeanne d’Arc, fille de Lorraine (La) Marco de Gastyne / France / 1927 Lu 28 mai 14h30
Moranbong, aventure coréenne Claude-Jean Bonnardot / France-Corée / 1958 Me 9 mai 14h30
Mortu nega Flora Gomes / Guinée-Bissau / 1988 Ve 25 mai 17h00
Orphée Jean Cocteau / France / 1949 Ve 18 mai 14h30
Paris 1900 Nicole Védrès / France / 1946 Lu 14 mai 14h30
Passion de Jeanne d’Arc (La) Carl Theodor Dreyer / France / 1927 Ve 11 mai 14h30
Prince Bayaya Jiří Trnka / Tchécoslovaquie / 1950 Sa 19 mai 14h30
Ran Akira Kurosawa / France, Japon / 1985 Di 13 mai 14h30
Seuls les anges ont des ailes Howard Hawks, Charles Vidor, Norman Deming / Etats-Unis / 1938 Sa 12 mai 14h30
Sixième partie du monde (La) Dziga Vertov / URSS / 1926 Lu 7 mai 14h30
Strada (La) Federico Fellini / Italie / 1954 Di 20 mai 14h30
Vertigo (Sueurs froides) Alfred Hitchcock / Etats-Unis / 1957 Di 27 mai 14h30

RENCONTRES ET CONFÉRENCES

Chris Marker, les 7 vies d’un cinéaste. Table ronde Sa 5 mai 14h30
Qui êtes-vous Chris Marker ? Conférence de Bamchade Pourvali Je 10 mai 19h00

Cinematheque francaise

Cinemathèque française Announces Chris Marker Exhibition + Retrospective

Les Sept Vies d'un Cineaste Chris Marker Exhibition Cinematheque francaise

Exciting news from the Cinémathèque française announcing dates for the much-anticipated Chris Marker exhibition has been posted on www.cinematheque.fr.

Here’s the intro and several citations for now. English translations have been added at the end of the post.

For background on the acquisition of Marker’s estate, see State of the Estate and State of the Estate II: The Glorious Shambles, as well as Fonds Chris Marker – 550 Grands Cartons chez Cinémathèque française here at chrismarker.org.

CHRIS MARKER LES 7 VIES D’UN CINÉASTE
EXPOSITION – RETROSPECTIVE DU 3 MAI AU 29 JUILLET 2018

L’exposition Chris Marker est un voyage. Un voyage dans l’espace et le temps, un voyage qui accompagne, de la Deuxième Guerre mondiale et la Résistance jusqu’à sa mort en 2012, le parcours exceptionnel d’un cinéaste et d’un homme hors du commun. Ce voyage est à la fois la chronique d’une existence longue et très remplie, et une libre circulation dans les différentes couches du temps aux côtés d’un explorateur inventif de possibles déplacements entre présent, passé et avenir, déplacements dont La Jetée a offert le modèle le plus connu. Cette exposition est en même temps un voyage dans l’espace, à la surface de la planète, aux côtés d’un infatigable globe-trotter, curieux du monde et de ses habitants : la Californie, l’Islande, la Corée, la Guinée-Bissau, la Sibérie, la Chine, l’Amérique latine de Mexico à Valparaíso en passant par La Havane, jalonnent ces trajets où l’amour du Japon occupe une place singulière. Les parcours de Chris Marker, à l’occasion, l’auront même mené sur Mars ou sur la planète virtuelle de Second Life…

[…]

La Cinémathèque française a recueilli les immenses archives de toute nature et sur tout support laissées par Marker à sa mort. C’est à partir de ce trésor aussi riche qu’hétérogène qu’a été conçue l’exposition, à la fois chronologique et thématique. La matière de ce legs est si riche et si complexe que l’inventaire de celui qui fut aussi un archiviste passionné n’est pas encore achevé au moment d’ouvrir l’exposition. On y découvre en particulier les œuvres originales qui lui avaient été offertes par de grands artistes, ses propres créations plastiques jusque-là inconnues, ainsi que ses deux grandes installations, Zapping Zone (Proposals for an Imaginary Television) et Owls at Noon Prelude: The Hollow Men, ainsi que le programme de discussion avec un ordinateur qu’il avait conçu, Dialector.

[…]

L’exposition est accompagnée, dans les salles de la Cinémathèque, par l’intégrale des films, vidéos et programmes télévisés (les treize épisodes de L’Héritage de la chouette) réalisés par Chris Marker. Seront également projetés les films auxquels il a collaboré, et le documentaire récent que lui ont consacré Jean-Marie Barbe et Arnaud Lambert, Never Explain, Never Complain. Et encore un programme particulier de grands films classiques particulièrement aimés de Marker et avec lesquels ses propres réalisations dialoguent.

Text by: Christine Van Assche (commissaire générale), Raymond Bellour et Jean-Michel Frodon (commissaires associés)

Find out more at: www.cinematheque.fr

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For those who wish in advance to dig a bit deeper into a philosophical exploration of Chris Marker and the archive, I recommend reading “Marker’s Archive”, the second Essay of Gavin Keeney’s recent book Knowledge, Spirit, Law: Book 2: The Anti-Capitalist Sublime. The sections of this wide-ranging reflection – within an even wider-ranging, fascinating book – comprise: I. Cultural Patrimony; II. Futural Intensity; III. Belated Assimilations; IV. Editioned Works; V. Pre-1962 Marker; and VI. Postscript. It is available through Punctum Books (‘earth, milky way’) in a limited edition. See punctumbooks.com.

Keeney is no stranger to Marker. In 2012, he published Dossier Chris Marker: The Suffering Image. The publisher Cambridge Scholars offers this sample online: Download PDF: Dossier Chris Marker.

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CHRIS MARKER THE 7 LIVES OF A CINEASTE
EXPOSITION – RETROSPECTIVE FROM MAY 3 TO JULY 29, 2018

The exhibition Chris Marker is a journey. A journey in space and time, a journey that accompanies, from the Second World War and the Resistance until his death in 2012, the exceptional journey of a filmmaker and a man out of the ordinary. This trip is at the same time the chronicle of a long and very full existence, and a free movement in the different layers of time alongside an inventive explorer of possible displacements between present, past and future, displacements of which La Jetée offered the best known model. This exhibition is at the same time a journey into space, on the surface of the planet, alongside a tireless globe-trotter, curious about the world and its inhabitants: California, Iceland, Korea, Guinea Bissau, Siberia, China, Latin America from Mexico City to Valparaíso via Havana, mark out those journeys where the love of Japan occupies a singular place. The courses of Chris Marker, on occasion, will have even led him to Mars or to the virtual planet of Second Life …

[…]

The Cinémathèque française has collected the immense archives of all kinds and on any medium [format, device] left by Marker at his death. It is from this rich and heterogeneous treasure – both chronological and thematic – that the exhibition was conceived. The material of this legacy is so rich and so complex that the inventory of the one who was also a passionate archivist is not yet complete when opening the exhibition. In particular, we discover the original works that had been offered to him by great artists, his own previously unknown plastic [fine art] creations, as well as his two great installations, Zapping Zone (Proposals for an Imaginary Television) and Owls at Noon Prelude: The Hollow Men, as well as the discussion program with a computer he had designed, Dialector.

[…]

The exhibition is accompanied, in theaters of the Cinémathèque, by the complete movies, videos and television programs (the thirteen episodes of The Owl’s Legacy) directed by Chris Marker. Also to be screened are the films he collaborated on, and the recent documentary directed by Jean-Marie Barbe and Arnaud Lambert, Never Explain, Never Complain. And as well a particular program of great classic films particularly loved by Marker and with which his own realizations dialogue.

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Update I: Assembling Marker with Jean-Michel Frodon

I just noticed news of an event, “Assembling Marker”, which will put Marker curator Jean-Michel Frodon in conversation with Nora Alter at Slought | Assembling Marker in Philadelphia, on March 12, 2018. It has been organized with Film and Media Arts at Temple University and Cinema & Media Studies and French & Francophone Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. Of course the mention of a “double volume publication” by the Cinémathèque definitely caught my attention. Here an excerpt from the announcement:

Upon Marker’s death, there were no direct heirs nor designees to manage his estate, preserve his legacy, and archive his materials. That task was taken up by the archives experts from Cinémathèque française, with the help and guidelines of a few devoted individuals including Jean-Michel Frodon and Raymond Bellour. The result of their tireless efforts and commitment is a double volume publication forthcoming this May, the most comprehensive exhibition ever dedicated to Marker’s multifacted work, and a vast retrospective including all his films and many of those he was inspired by or that were inspired by him, opening at the Cinémathèque Française on May 2. In conversation with Alter, Frodon will discuss the experience and process of archiving Marker, editing his writings and preparing an exhibition—all part of the process of making accessible the work of a deeply private person who vehemently disliked public life.
slought.org

Where do people get the idea that being a “deeply private person” translates automatically into “vehemently disliked public life”? Sure, if we define public life as non-stop interviews and being stalked by paparazzi, that might hold true, but Marker welcomed strangers into his atelier, offered them vodka, made friends across the world, and in many ways made public life – the commons and the global village – the vast palette from which he assembled his creations, even though he no doubt needed long stretches of private, focused time to bring them to life.

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Update II: CHRIS MARKER L’HOMME MONDE

The current presentation on the Actes Sud site gives the title of the catalog (and the exhibition) as Chris Marker: l’homme monde:

L’exposition “Chris Marker, l’homme monde”, organisée l’année des célébrations du cinquantième anniversaire de Mai 68, s’accompagne de l’édition d’un ouvrage de référence, pour lequel ont été conviés les plus grands spécialistes de l’œuvre de l’artiste. Les trente essais qui composent cet imposant volume dévoilent les différentes facettes de la personnalité de cet homme qui fut tour à tour résistant, écrivain, cinéaste, amateur d’art, voyageur, photographe, éditeur, monteur… Répartie en neuf chapitres, l’iconographie riche et dense fait la part belle aux archives des collections de la Cinémathèque française, dont certaines inédites. L’ouvrage se donne ainsi l’ambition de plonger dans l’intimité de Marker pour permettre d’en saisir toute la contemporanéité du projet intellectuel et artistique, la curiosité et l’acuité du regard sur la situation de notre monde actuel, la générosité politique et l’exigence éthique. En outre, l’œuvre de Chris Marker a eu un impact considérable et fut une source d’inspiration pour nombre d’intellectuels, de créateurs, de réalisateurs et de passionnés du cinéma.
Actes Sud

Chris Marker L'Homme Monde catalog Actes Sud

The exhibition “Chris Marker, the world man”, organized the year of the celebrations of the fiftieth anniversary of May 68, is accompanied by the edition of a reference work, for which were invited the greatest specialists on the work of the artist. The thirty essays that compose this imposing volume unveil the various facets of the personality of this man who was in turn ‘resistant’, writer, filmmaker, amateur artist, traveler, photographer, book editor, film editor… Distributed in nine chapters, the rich, dense iconography is the pride of the archives in the collections of the Cinémathèque française, some unpublished. The book thus aims to plunge into the intimacy of Marker, in order to fully grasp the contemporaneity of his intellectual and artistic project, the curiosity and acuteness of his view of the situation of our current world, his poetic generosity and ethical imperative. In addition, the work of Chris Marker has had a considerable impact and was a source of inspiration for many intellectuals, creators, directors and film enthusiasts.
Actes Sud

Studio: A Remembrance of Chris Marker – Bartos, McCabe, Lerner

Ben Lerner, Chris Marker studio

Marker Studio, 2007 © Adam Bartos

He inferred that persons desiring to train this faculty (of memory) must select places and form mental images of the things they wish to remember and store those images in the places, so that the order of the places will preserve the order of the things, and the images of the things will denote the things themselves, and we shall employ the places and images respectively as a wax writing-tablet and the letters written on it.Cicero, De oratore [on Simionides discovery of the art of memory], quoted Frances Yates, The Art of Memory, 2

We have seen some photos on the net of late taken at Chris Marker’s atelier, showing the wealth of memorabilia, books, and technologies of a life of creation & travel that made up the precious space of his atelier, most of which we assume is now in the hands of the Cinémathèque française. It turns out that the photos are by Adam Bartos, and the Paris Review article where they were first glimpsed is just a hint of what is to come – a full book of his photos of Marker’s studio: Studio: A Remembrance of Chris Marker. The book will be published in 2017, so we have to be patient, but it promises innovative layouts including gatefold images, a text by Colin McCabe and an introduction by Lerner. Here’s the information I’ve been able to gather to date:

OR Book Going Rouge

Studio: A Remembrance of Chris Marker

ISBN 9781682190807
$40.00

OR Books
Photographs by Adam Bartos. Text by Colin McCabe. Introduction by Ben Lerner.
Hbk, 6.5 x 9.5 in. / 96 pgs / 21 color.
Pub Date: 5/23/2017 | Awaiting stock
U.S. $40.00 CDN $52.50

Chris Marker (1921–2012) was a celebrated French documentary film director, writer and photographer, best known for his films La Jetée, A Grin Without a Cat and Sans Soleil. He was described by fellow filmmaker Alain Resnais as “the prototype of the 21st-century man.” In this highly original book, Adam Bartos’ exquisite photographs of Marker’s studio, a workspace both extraordinarily cluttered and highly organized, appear alongside a moving reminiscence of his friend by the film theorist, Godard biographer and practitioner Colin MacCabe. The novelist and poet Ben Lerner provides a fulsome introduction to the work of Marker, Bartos and MacCabe. The physical structure of the book, incorporating an array of gatefold images, echoes Marker’s own commitment to radical, innovative form. The result is a compelling homage to one of the most important and original talents in modern cinema.
www.artbook.com

Chris Marker’s Studio – Adam Bartos and Ben Lerner

Chris Marker, whose name was not “Chris Marker,” was a play of masks and avatars, an artist who leapt, like one of his beloved cats, from medium to medium. If, as Walter Benjamin said, a great work either dissolves a genre or invents one, if each great work is a special case, Marker produced a series of special cases. He invented the genre of the essay film; he composed what is widely considered the greatest short film ever made, La Jetée, in 1962; in the late nineties, he issued one of the first major artworks of the digital age, the CD-ROM Immemory. Even Marker’s relation to his own celebrity was an evasive masterpiece: until his death in 2012, at ninety-one, he was everywhere and nowhere, refusing both the haughty fantasy of nonparticipation and the seductions of spectacle. How do you ­memorialize an artist who refused to remain identical to himself? How do you remember one of the great philosopher-artists of memory?

Adam Bartos’s photographs of Marker’s Paris studio offer a powerful answer; they are beautiful portraits from which the subject has gone missing.
www.theparisreview.org

Ben Lerner, Chris Marker studio

Marker Studio, 2007 © Adam Bartos

Ben Lerner, Chris Marker studio

Marker Studio, 2007 © Adam Bartos

Marker’s studio is a kind of (light-flooded) darkroom located off a Parisian boulevard and is as full of formerly futuristic keepsakes as a cosmonaut’s yard sale—that is to say, Bartos has been preparing, without knowing it, to shoot Marker’s studio for decades. The studio is both remarkably cluttered and remarkably clean. There is no trash (although there is plenty of kitsch), no dust; the thousands of books, VHS tapes, and CDs, the multiple computers, monitors, keyboards, and other production technologies all seem in their place. A sense of highly personal order prevails; Marker, I feel, would have just the right texts and images and totems at hand, but anyone else would be at a loss regarding how to navigate his systems. And while Marker isn’t at home, from every corner something gazes at us: his cats and owls, Kim Novak in a signed photograph (Vertigo was Marker’s favorite film), the paused image of an actress on a monitor (in these images, Marker will forever almost be right back), masks of various sorts, stuffed animals, et cetera. Marker’s mind seems spatialized here, as though we were looking into his memory palace, an elaborate, idiosyncratic mnemonic become a memorial. But a joyous memorial: joyous first, because Marker’s signature mix of seriousness and playfulness is palpable—we see a thousand grins and winks—and second, because Marker, instead of becoming the fixed ­object of elegy, has again given us the slip, allowing us an intimate glimpse, but of privacy.
Ben Lerner, Paris Review, No. 218 (Fall 2016).

For those interested in the idea of the memory palace, take a look at Jonathan Spence’s The Memory Palace of Matteo Ricci. The introduction to Marker’s Immemory is also invaluable, as he articulated there his concepts of mnemonics as an architecture of memory, linking it to a long European tradition most famously explored in Frances Yates’ The Art of Memory. Another great resource on medieval practices of the art of memory can be found in Mary Carruthers’ books: Carruthers, Mary. The Book of Memory: A Study of Memory in Medieval Culture. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1990 & Carruthers, Mary. The Craft of Thought: Meditation, Rhetoric, and the Making of Images, 400-1200. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1998. Other sources can be found on our page DocuMemory: A Bibliography.

Chris Marker studio door with cat drawing

Marker Studio Front Door, 2008 © Adam Bartos

Art of Memory – From Chris Marker, Immemory

“L’Art de la Mémoire’ est […] une très ancienne discipline, tombée (c’est un comble) dans l’oubli à mesure que le divorce entre physiologie et psychologie se consommait. Certains auteurs anciens avaient des méandres de l’esprit une vision plus fonctioinnelle, et c’est Filippo Gesualdo, dans sa Plutosofia (1592) qui propose une image de la mémoire en termes d’«arborescence» parfaitement logicielle, si j’ose cet adjectif.”

[‘The art of memory’ is a very ancient discipline, fallen (that takes the cake!) into oblivion as the divorce between physiology and psychology came to pass. Certain antique authors had a more functional vision of the twists and turns of the mind, and it is Filippo Gesualdo, in his Plutosofia (1592) who proposes an image of memory in terms of ‘branching’ that is perfectly “softwary”, [softwarian?] if I dare use this adjective.]

State of the Estate II: The Glorious Shambles

Chris Marker atelier with Guillaume by Agnès Varda

In the middle, on the balcony, the tree has grown, just a little.Chris Marker

Though the article cited below focuses on the archive of Jacques Demy acquired by the Cinémathèque française, this interview, part two of a series between journalist Louis Guichard and the Cinémathèque’s head Serge Toubiana, takes a fascinating if brief detour into the case of the estate of Chris Marker. If it sounds like there’s a mystery novel in there somewhere, there is.

One of the ideas that appears here in nuce is that of mapping a tree structure of Marker’s work. I am led to imagine a majestic infographic showing the main trunk and the branches into bifurcating gardens of media visualizing the fruits of Marker’s bricolage. Immemory, Dialector, Second Life, YouTube. Collective work, personal work, anonymous work. Writing, photography, programming, book design. The branching of names, aliases, pen names, noms de guerre. Guillaume’s poptronics forays into political commentary. The filmic byproducts of Marker’s home away from home in Second Life, Ouvroir, including The Third Cat and Ouvroir: The Movie. Arborescent branchings of a life/work of intelligence and curiosity, ceaseless but ending nonetheless — though continued in all who were en-raptured by his work, echos, reverberations, new generations of artists — other trees that grew up around the central tree of life/work. And underneath the trees, the rhizomes, like the beach beneath the concrete, driving slogan of May ’68…

Here’s the excerpt that fills in some details to the already reported State of the Estate, back in June. You can follow Serge Toubiana’s blog at blog.cinematheque.fr. More of course as we know more.

L’acquisition d’archives payantes est-elle une option ?

[…]

Il y aussi le cas de Chris Marker, qui n’a pas fait de testament. Au cours des dernières années de sa vie, il était logé chez Costa-Gavras, président de la Cinémathèque, et il avait dit qu’il laisserait une lettre précisant ce qu’il voulait faire de ses archives. Mais on n’a rien trouvé de tel. A sa mort, il y a donc eu un inventaire sommaire et une recherche de descendance qui a identifié six personnes au 5e et 6e degrés… Nous leur avons fait une proposition qui a été retenue et nous avons acquis le fonds pour 40 000 euros. Nous nous sommes trouvés face à une sorte de gigantesque foutoir avec des lots énormes de photos, de négatifs, de disques durs, d’ordinateurs, tout le travail qu’il faisait sur Second Life, des centaines de petits objets, de collages, de journaux… Il gardait tout. Mais qu’en faire ? C’est un travail considérable. Nous avons constitué une équipe en interne chargée de poursuivre l’inventaire et de travailler sur le fonds numérique. De plus, un comité scientifique se réunit régulièrement. Comment montrer l’arborescence de cette œuvre hybride? Chris Marker était un média à lui tout seul. Peut-être faudra-t-il associer des ingénieurs à cette réflexion… Il y aura sans doute un événement Marker à la Cinémathèque en 2017 ou 2018.Serge Toubiana, interviewed by Louis Guichard, “Serge Toubiana : “Le don des archives Demy à la Cinémathèque est un geste de confiance et d’amitié”, www.telerama.fr

Rough English Translation

Is paying for archival acquisitions an option?

[…]

There is also the case of Chris Marker, who did not create a will. In the course of the last years of his life, he was living with Costa-Gavras, President of the Cinémathèque, and he had said that he would leave a letter specifying what he wished to do with his archives. But nothing like this was found. With his death, a summary inventory took place, along with research into his heirs that identified six persons removed by 5 or 6 degrees… We made them a proposition that was agreed upon and we acquired the estate for 40,000 Euros. We found ourselves faced with a sort of gigantic shambles, with enormous stacks of photos, negatives, hard drives, computers, all the work that he conducted in/on Second Life, hundreds of small objects, collages, journals… He kept everything. But what to do with it? It’s a considerable piece of work. We put together a team internally, charged with pursuing the inventory and working on the digital archive. In addition, a scientific committee meets regularly. How to present the tree structure of this hybrid work? Chris Marker was a media [enterprise] unto himself. Perhaps it will be necessary to have engineers consider this reflection… There will be without a doubt a Marker event at the Cinémathèque in 2017 or 2018.

Also, please stay tuned for our upcoming article on the new book ZOO, which collects the animals from the Petite Planète series Marker edited into an exciting new work.

State of the Estate

Cinematheque francaise

What follows is a rough translation of an online announcement from the Cinémathèque française on the state of a three year inventory of the estate of Chris Marker, contained in 550 boxes initially upon receipt. The original article can be found at Fonds Chris Marker [updated]. This news is, quite simply, unbelievably exciting. My inner archivist wants to take the next plane to Paris.

§

Estate Chris Marker: Where are we at with the inventory?

In the Spring of 2013, the Cinémathèque française took possession to its archives 550 large moving boxes containing the archives of Chris Marker, deceased during the summer of the preceding year. Under the conduct of a scientific committee of individuals close to the filmmaker and familiar with his work, the inventory of the estate began rapidly. The total duration of the operation was estimated at around three years. So where are we, two years later?

The 550 boxes that make up the estate are divided as follows:

5 boxes of posters; 6 boxes of LP records and musical documents; 15 boxes of photographs; 55 boxes of objects, miniatures…; 66 boxes of audiovisual material (Beta, master…); 98 boxes of archives (press documentation, files & folders); 112 boxes of VHS and DVD edits and personal recordings; 137 boxes of periodicals and books.

At this point in time, the boxes of photographs have been thoroughly inventoried, although not all photographs have been identified. Similarly, the inventory of ‘apparatuses/apparatii’ [appareils] is complete. The library of Chris Marker, rich with some 137 boxes, has been made the object of a deeper study and is approaching completion. An actively used library, as opposed to a collector’s library, it presents a singularity in so far as each work is stuffed with diverse documents: letters, press clipings, etc. Each volume therefore has been the object of a precise description of the elements that it contains. To get an idea of this library, the inventory would be certainly instructive, but evidently insufficient. A virtual library project is therefore being considered.

The inventory continues currently with the objects, posters, audiovisual materials and paper archives. This work should be completed by Fall 2015. The inventory of hard drives, on which Marker worked during the course of the last 20 years of his life, has also begun. These discs contain several million files. To bring to fruition the description of their contents will be a long-term work [‘de longue haleine’, literally ‘of long breath’]. Similarly, initial work on the state of more than a thousand digital diskettes [floppies/zip/flash drives presumably] has begun with the help of a digital conservation specialist [digital archivist]. A work of securing and restoring, an indispensible prior step to taking an inventory, will be conducted in the coming months.

During the course of the Fall, the VHS, DVD, CD and vinyl LPs will be inventoried, permitting thereby, with the horizon of Summer 2016, to have analyzed the sum total of the boxes of the estate and to have arrived at an initial, global view of its coherence and richness. Work on cataloging can then begin, with the objective remaining to place the estate at the disposition of researchers starting in 2018, while presenting it as well in the form of a grand exhibition at the Cinémathèque française. The scientific committee is already working toward this goal.

Joël Daire, with the participation of Valérie Sanroma-Kernke and Marie Bergue