Thursday, February 9, 2012

Seconds of Eternity I: The Films of Gregory J. Markopoulos

Early Films (1940–49)

Pacific Film Archive

presented in association with Pacific Film Archive
[PFA Admission Apply]
Order advance tickets here.
Introduced by filmmaker Robert Beavers.

One of cinema’s great colorists, early in his career Markopoulos achieved a palette worthy of Delacroix or Redon. (Kristin M. Jones, Artforum)

Psyche, the first film of Markopoulos‘ trilogy Du Sang, de la volupté et de la mort, demonstrates Markopoulos’ great talent for color, composition, and graceful camera movements. Made under conditions of incredible austerity, the trilogy is radical in its use of narrative form and sound/image disparity. Psyche was inspired by an unfinished novella by Pierre Louÿs, and expresses “various viewpoints on an encounter, in which the heroine experiences great difficulty in giving voice to her sensuality.” (Yann Beauvais) Markopoulos called Lysis “a study in stream-of-consciousness poetry of a lost, wandering, homosexual soul” and felt that the film foreshadowed The Illiac Passion. “I have only once worked in black-and-white…a film called The Dead Ones, which I dedicated to Jean Cocteau back in 1949…”. In most films today, certainly in the commercial field, they make films so quickly that the technicians aren’t patient enough to try to register these various greys, blacks, and whites the way the great Stroheim and the magnificent Sternberg did in their work.” (Gregory J. Markopoulos, Film Culture)
(Susan Oxtoby, Pacific Film Archive)

A Christmas Carol  1940, 5 mins, Silent, Color, 16mm
Psyche  1947–48. With Ann Wells, George Emmons. 25 mins, Color, 16mm, PFA Collection
Lysis  1947–48. With Markopoulos. 30 mins, Color, 16mm, PFA Collection
Charmides  1947-48, 15 mins, Color, 16mm, PFA Collection
Christmas USA 1949, 8 mins, Silent, B&W, 16mm
The Dead Ones 1949. With Markopoulos, Elwood Decker. 28 mins, Silent, B&W, 35mm

Followed by:
The Suppliant Robert Beavers (2010, U.S./Switzerland) Bay Area Premiere!
“An exquisitely wrought, five-minute portrait, both of the small statue of the title and of the artist/friend in whose apartment it resides” (Tony Pipolo).