Nicolas Klotz and
From February 2 to April 1st, 2017
Opening on February 2 at 7 pm
Special screening of the filmmakers’ new film Mata Atlântica on February 2 at 6 pm
A long time ago, the Mata Atlântica forest stretched from Argentina to Paraguay. Today it has practically disappeared. In the heart of São Paulo, Trianon Park contains within its gates the remains of this immense tropical forest who’s spirits still haunts and roams among the trees. One day, a young woman disappears in the park. An employee of the park is arrested by the police, but soon other girls start to disappear.
Improvised performance by dancer Sophia Gaspard on February 2 at 7:30 pm
The cinema interrogates our bodies. Both those of the actors and the audience. The boundary between the two is so thin and at the same time so real. What energies flow between them ?
In this performance, the dancer Sophia Gaspard explores inside and around this boundary. She herself becomes the boundary, between the walls where the images and sounds of Je sais courir mais je ne sais pas m’enfuir still reverberate, with the music and the audience. (Music: Ulysse Klotz)
This exhibition, proposed by Marie-Claude Loiselle, is presented in partnership with the Cinémathèque québécoise who is presenting the installation Najgo! (Des histoires de chasse à l’homme et de films d’horreur) until February 9, 2017 as well as a retrospective of their films from January 30 to February 16, 2017.
The magnetic and visionary work of the filmmakers Nicolas Klotz and Elisabeth Perceval liberate new ways of working, thinking, experiencing and of taking us with them into the fate of cinema. In the flashing outbursts moments they capture, each crystallises an experience of the world, private and true, which acts as an antidote to the violence of the present day. Traditional cinema and its modes of narration are exhausted, and for them this indisputable fact demands that something like the burning necessity of a primitive art, always being (re)born, be found. Merging cinema, dance, theatre, music, texts, eras and stories, they use new tools to bring out a multitude of tangible connections with the power to transform poetically and politically our perceptions and relations with the world.
The origin of this exhibition lies in the script of a forthcoming film: Cérémonie. Or rather, the Faulkner short story “Red Leaves”, which created the desire to make this dreamt-of film, projected towards history, towards today and tomorrow. This short story recounts the escape of a black slave who, when his master dies, tries to avoid a (Chickasaw) tradition which holds that a slave should be buried with his master and his horse. Haunted by this subterranean narrative, a multitude of stories about men being hunted and escaping, about captures and liberation, brings together the men and women who inhabit the three parts of the present installation.
But there is also the presence of Luciles, solar and radiant, who watch over the exhibition and welcome us into the space of the gallery the moment we walk through the door. Whether these Luciles are born by the voice or the body of a young woman of Paris, Rio or Montreal, they appear like sisters of Büchner’s revolutionary and free Lucile (that of Danton’s Death), who has come here to meet a reincarnation of Sasportas from Müller’s Mission – a former black slave who became a revolutionary during the French Revolution. In Klotz and Perceval’s cinema we find an entire community of resistant women, such as Ophelia in Hamlet-Machine (Müller again), Antigone, or some Spanish Republican combatant inhabiting the bodies of Sophie and Carmen in Low Life. These “wild” women, these survivors, are also those who populate the night in Je sais courir mais je ne sais pas m’enfuir. Blonde or black apparitions, by reviving fraternal relations with the pursued young migrant they overturn, for a moment, the black man’s destiny for centuries at the same time as they suppress the power of seizure.
Everything in history is connected, as in the fragmented, non-linear narratives which meet in the three works presented, bringing together the strengths of the black slave of yesteryear and the “illegal” migrant of today, the beggar of Je sais courir... and the homeless people that we find alongside the undocumented Africans of La Blessure in Nous ne figurons pas dans le paysage. A world of miraculous presences and mixed voices. Voices of a humanity which multiple movements assemble in a single space where we, spectators, circulate. Here as everywhere in the work of Klotz and Perceval something circulates between history and the private, between past and future, between the events and memory which cinema retains, modifying the way we look at them. Something which dreams (politically) the cinema by opening fabulous spaces of freedom for the imagination.
— Marie-Claude Loiselle
Nicolas Klotz and Elisabeth Perceval have an international reputation for their eight feature films and several documentaries, short films, videos and installations. Their work has been presented internationally in exhibitions and in festivals. The Centre Pompidou is currently preparing a major retrospective exhibition of all of their work.
Marie-Claude Loiselle was editor-in-chief of the magazine 24 images from 1992 to 2016. She is a contributor to the writing and editing of Combat au bout de la nuit (2016) and Chant des pierres (in development) by Sylvain L'Espérance.