Harvard Film Archive presents “A Diptych by Robert Fenz”


February 3, 2012

CAMBRIDGE, MA: The Harvard Film Archive is pleased to present A DIPTYCH BY ROBERT FENZ FRIDAY FEBRUARY 3, 2012 featuring the filmmaker in person.

About the series:
Peripatetic filmmaker extraordinaire Robert Fenz (b. 1969) returns with two new films extending his poetic engagement with the haunting, atavistic echoes that render culture and history as among the cinema’s most distant and elusive subjects. Intensely cinematic, Correspondence and The Sole of the Foot use Fenz’s exquisite 16mm cinematography to impart a sense of haunting pastness and transience to the faces and landscapes portrayed within them. Accompanying and complementing Fenz’s diptych is Shiloh Cinquemani’s exhilarating and award-winning portrait of German locomotive efficency, Berlin Tracks 18h00-20h00.

Film schedule:
Filmmaker Robert Fenz in Person
Special Event Tickets $12
Friday February 3 at 7pm

Correspondence is my tribute Robert Gardner’s body of work. Retracing his steps, I filmed in the same locations in which he filmed. Dead Birds (1964) was filmed in West Papua, Rivers of Sand (1974) was filmed in Ethiopia, and Forest of Bliss (1986) was filmed in Benares, India. My goal was to craft a film in dialogue with his body of work. I found my images – one might say – to the left-and-right of his frames. I shot the majority of the film in lush black-and-white and did not record sound. I intended in this way to echo the poetic element in Gardner’s film documents. Correspondence is as much about Gardner’s documentary style as it is about filmmaking with silver gelatin material – about how we think and remember with film. So, Correspondence is my tribute to Gardner, but it is also my homage to a kind of filmmaking in which he is a master. – Robert Fenz
Directed by Robert Fenz
US/Germany 2011, 16mm, color, 30 min

The Sole of the Foot
A series of improvised variations on the concept of “place,” The Sole of the Foot explores ideas of belonging, isolation, and displacement. I filmed in France, Israel, and Cuba, among populations whose claim to belonging and identity are contested by others who assert a superior right to belong. I chose these locations because of questions I have about my own sense of belonging and of place.

The sound in the film moves in-and-out of sync; the film itself is in color. Color, like sync sound, creates an illusion of presence. By using location sound, and moving it in or out of sync, I try alternately to enhance or mute a sense of alienation and disorientation–touched by improvisation—creating a space wherein viewers may contemplate their own train of thought as equal participants in an act of imaginative co-creation. – RF
Directed by Robert Fenz
US/Germany 2011, 16mm, color, 34 min

Berlin Tracks 18h00-20h00
A composition of elusive moments and variations of colliding perspectives, Berlin Tracks 18h00-20h00 documents the railway tracks stretching out from under the Modersohnbrücke (Modersohn Bridge) towards Warshauer Str. S-Bahn Station in Berlin, Germany. The abstracted landscape visualizes alternative conceptions of time, experience and the ordinary.
Directed by Shiloh Cinquemani
Germany 2010, 16mm, color, 2 min

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Harvard Film Archive
24 Quincy Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
(617) 495-4700
General Admission Tickets $9, $7 Non-Harvard Students, Seniors, Harvard Faculty and Staff. Harvard students free

Special event tickets (for in-person appearances) are $12.
Tickets go on sale 45 minutes prior to show time. The HFA does not do advance ticket sales.