presented in association with the San Francisco Silent Film Festival, Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive, Canyon Cinema Foundation and Alliance Française of San Francisco
live musical accompaniment by Earplay and Stephen Horne
Two extraordinary films from Paris in the 1920s illustrate the artistic and intellectual ferment of the time when many of the world’s great artists and thinkers convened in the City of Lights.
Emak-Bakia (d. Man Ray, 1927, 16 minutes)
American artist Man Ray lived in Paris in the 1920s, where he created some of his most well-known works, including several avant-garde films that added to his considerable stature. (ARTnews named Ray one of the 25 most influential artists of the 20th century.) Ray’s cinépoème Emak-Bakia will be presented with a new score, composed by Nicolas Tzortzis and performed by the new chamber music group Earplay.
Ménilmontant (d. Dimitri Kirsanoff, 1926, 44 minutes)
The great film writer Pauline Kael named Ménilmontant her favorite film of all time, calling it, “an exquisite, poetic 40-minute movie that is one of the least known masterpieces of the screen.” Written and directed by the Russian émigré Dmitri Kirsanov, who came to cinema as a cellist in a Paris movie house, the film tells the story of two sisters (Nadia Sibirskaïa, Yolande Beaulieu) in dazzlingly experimental style. Live musical accompaniment by Stephen Horne.
Special support from the French American Cultural Society and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States