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Cinephotovarda

Director: Agnes Varda

FRANCE| 2004| FRENCH W/ENGLISH SUBTITLES| 96 MINS


‘The most fascinating thing with an image is that people never say what you expect them to, everyone has their own vision of any photograph.’
Cinephotovarda comprises Varda’s most recent film, Ydessa, the Bears and Etc…,screening alongside two earlier films, Ulysses and Salut les Cubains!, which together span some 40 years. Ydessa, the Bears and Etc… began withVarda’s visit to an exhibition by artist-collector-curator Ydessa Hendeles. The display of hundreds of old photographs, each of which features a teddy bear, prompted Varda to seek out the artist and examine what lies behind the meticulous accumulation of these very particular historical artifacts. In Ulysses, a single photograph taken by Varda in 1954 shows a child, a naked man and a dead goat on the seashore. Re-visiting her own memories and those of the subjects, amongst others, she pondersthe real and the imaginary of the captured moment. Made in 1962, Salut les Cubains! fuses documentary photographs from the director’s visit to Castro’s Cuba with a cheerful cha-cha-cha soundtrack to encapsulate theenergising optimism of the time. Seen as a tryptich, the films provide a fascinating discourse on the relationship between film andphotography, and summarises the director’s own history of image making in these distinct but connected art forms.

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