VIDEOART IN AUGUST #2
Guest Curator: Bernadette Caille
“We do not erase the truth, nor indeed the lie”, the slogan of may 68. The session is a series of silent films, the Ciné-tracts, short films, deliberately anonymous, made from may 1968, in Paris. They were always filmed in the form of an unsigned collective work, sometimes by confirmed directors, such as Jean-Luc Godard or Chris Marker. According to a text from the time, the Ciné-tracts must "challenge-propose-shock-inform-question-affirm-convince-think-scream-laugh-denounce-cultivate". Small silent films (except one, number 6) show the determination of students and workers. They also show police violence. To date, 111 have been recovered and restored. The author of most of the photographs is Gilles Caron, who died in Cambodja, in 1970, at the age of 30.
Bernardette Caille is an editor, professor and curator. She curated the exhibition 1968, quelle histoire ! at Rencontres de la photographie d’Arles, in 2018, and at FUSO - Anual de Videoarte Internacional de Lisboa, in the same year, presenting a selection of these films-tracts, as historical testimonies of the events that shook not only France, but the entire world.
Ciné-tracts n° 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 16, 19, 20, 21, 24, 31, 101, 110, 111
The Ciné-tracts are short films, deliberately anonymous, made from May 1968 in Paris. Production will cease in 1970. They are part of the projects conceived within the Etats Généraux du Cinéma gathered from May 17, 1968. Each Ciné-tract is filmed on the “banc-titre” and unedited, with French photographs and foreign, usually on a single 16mm coil, 2min 44s.
During the strongest moments of the protest, students or artists who joined them print up to 3000 posters per day, posted by volunteers on the walls of Paris, after the big French cities. The workers arrive at the “Atelier”, talk and debate slogans, the power of the words used so that the productions are closer to the reality of the struggles. This "plastic revolution" found its brutal flourishing in other areas, such as music, cinema, philosophy or literature, which experienced tremendous explosions giving rise to movements with extremely original touches and beyond borders. The Ciné-tracts are made with the same philosophy: raw material, without editing, without signatures, without sound. These films had a militant distribution, notably through the SLON cooperative that later became Iskra (spark in Russian, in reference to the 1917 Revolution).
On the harsh nakedness of truth — the diaphanous mantle of fantasy
Eça de Queiroz in A Relíquia [The Relic], 1887
maat, Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in a partnership with Horta Seca, producer of the festival Temps d'Images and FUSO - Festival de Videoarte Internacional de Lisboa, presents a video art program that will take place for a month in 4 sessions, every Saturdays of August.
The project has explore the theme of #truth, inspired by this iconic quote from Eça de Queiroz's book and the thought that sustains it: that fantasy often allows to transmit or reveal a truth.
Four renowned curators in the field of international video art were invited to bring to the museum a proposal for each session: Jean François-Chougnet, artistic director of FUSO and director of MUCEM; Tom van Vliet, founder of the World Wide Video Festival; Bernardette Caille, editorial director and independent curator; and Lori Zippay, executive director of Electronic Arts Intermix (USA). The screenings will be presented starting at 5pm and will be accompanied by a commentary from each curator.