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Festival of Films on Art (FIFA) in Montreal, March 20-30, 2014
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Author: tomasz
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Tomasz Neugebauer

PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 

   Festival of Films on Art (FIFA) in Montreal, March 20-30, 2014

Festival of Films on Art (FIFA), 2014 edition officially opens tomorrow, March 20th.

Here are some of my picks from the festival programme:

Une Photographie de la Maison
Composed essentially of still photographs, this documentary is an essay on photography written in the first person, and an overview of the Maison européenne de la photographie and its collection, considered among the finest in Europe. It also evokes some of the major figures represented there: William Klein, Ralph Gibson, Helmut Newton, René Burri, Raymond Depardon, Jim Dine, Sebastiao Salgado, Bernard Lamarche-Vadel, Georges Didi-Huberman, Jean Baudrillard... Through this process, the film traces the history of photography from its invention to this day.

The Next Big Thing
Over the last few years, the world of contemporary art has undergone drastic changes. Our modern-day taste is no longer determined by the great museums or by the critics, but by dealers and mega-rich collectors. Despite the financial crisis, the auctions at Sotheby’s and Christie’s are breaking record after record. This film looks into the transformation of the art world and the consequences this shift of power is having on artists, collectors, dealers, museums and the history of art. Interviewed are various artists, collectors, specialists and museum directors.

Beat Generation
The story of the deep and long-lasting friendship shared by Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg and William Burroughs, which gave rise to the literary movement of the “Beat Generation.” It all started in New York in the early 1950s when Kerouac decided to write an enormous novel about their common experience. It then moved through San Francisco, Mexico City, Tangiers and Paris where, in quest of the absolute and in reaction to a puritanical America, all three experimented with sex and drugs. It ended some fifteen years later with the successive publication of Ginsberg’s Howl (1956), Kerouac’s On the Road (1957) and Burrough’s Naked Lunch (1959), each of which is a manifesto in itself.

Google and the World Brain
The story of the most ambitious project ever conceived on the Internet, and the people who tried to stop it. In 2002, Google began to scan millions of books in an effort to create a giant global library, containing every book in existence. They had an even greater purpose—to create a higher form of intelligence, something that H.G. Wells predicted would occur in his 1937 essay “World Brain.” But over half the scanned books were still in copyright, and authors across the world launched a campaign to stop Google, climaxing in a New York courtroom in 2011. A film about the dreams, dilemmas and dangers of the Internet.

The Man Who Shot Beautiful Women: Erwin Blumenfeld
Photographer, art director, contributor to Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Cosmopolitan and Life, Erwin Blumenfeld (1897-1969) revolutionized the fashion image. He survived two world wars and became one of the world’s most highly paid fashion photographers. His influence on the development of photography as an art form was decisive. However, after his mysterious death in Rome in 1969, he is little known today. This first portrait devoted to Blumenfeld had exclusive access to his archives and reflects the work of a man fascinated by beautiful women, and also by the endless possibilities of photography.

Measuring Art
How does art affect us? Humanity has never stopped probing art to identify its essence, its necessity and its expression. In recent years, brain research has benefited from advances in technology and has now given us tools to better understand what happens in our brain when we contemplate a painting, listen to music and watch a movie. This film focuses on the relationship between art and brain research, which is advancing by leaps and bounds. We can now measure what happens in our brain with greater accuracy and start putting together all the pieces of the puzzle.

Fangor...The Pictures Will Remain
Artist, painter and illustrator Wojciceh Fangor, who created posters for Andrzej Wajda’s films, was born in Poland in 1922 into an affluent family of industrialists. During the war, he was in Warsaw during the uprising and miraculously escaped. After the war, he threw his support behind the communist government. His art was consistent with the codes of socialist realism, and he became a leading figure in this genre. In the 1950s, Fangor turned to abstraction. In 1960, he moved to Paris and from there to the United States, where he lived until 1999, when he returned to Poland. In 1970, he was the first Polish artist to have a solo retrospective at New York’s Guggenheim Museum.
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