artist / participant

press release

Malba - Coleccion Costantini is proud to present Chantal Akerman, An Autobiography, the first exhibition and comprehensive retrospective in Latin America of one of the most influential filmmakers of her generation.

Chantal Akerman was born in Brussels, Belgium, in 1950, into a family that had been victim to the Holocaust. It was after having seen Pierrot le Fou, by Jean-Luc Godard, that she decided to devote herself to filmmaking, at 15 years of age. In 1967, she attended the Belgium Film School for three months and then went to the International University of Theatre in Paris. Between 1971 and 1974, she lived New York's '70s avant-garde scene, where she came to know Jonas Mekas', Stan Brakhage's and Michael Snow's work. In 1974 she shot her first feature film, Je tu il elle, in which certain constant motifs of her work already appear, such as uprootedness, isolation and solitude, migration, desire and sexuality.

"Film has played a crucial role at Malba ever since the museum's foundation. In addition to the ongoing film program, this is the second exhibition dedicated to a filmmaker. Today, one year after Chantal Akerman: Autoportrait en cineaste organized by the Centre Pompidou in Paris, it is an honour to present this second exhibition dedicated to a filmmaker. I am really grateful to Chantal Akerman, who unhesitatingly accepted, on the first day we met in Paris, our invitation to come to Buenos Aires to show her work", states Eduardo F. Costantini Jr., Executive Director of Malba.

Within the framework of the VII Buenos Aires International Independent Film Festival (BAFICI), the show features a retrospective of Akerman's film work - her first short films and her most outstanding feature films - and the presentation of the video installation D'Est. Au bord de la fiction (1995) in Malba's contemporary exhibition space.

Based on Akerman's documentary D'Est (1993), the video installation D'Est. Au bord de la fiction will be exhibited at Malba for two months. This was the first film that Akerman drew on to make a video installation. Since then, she has frequently exhibited in major art spaces - the Centre Pompidou in Paris; Documenta Kassel (Germany); the 2001 Venice Biennial; Musee d'Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris; The Jewish Museum (New York); and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, among others - and has realized six video installations to date.

In Catherine David's words, D'Est. Au bord de la fiction "reveals in striking new light the formal poetry and politics of the cinema of Chantal Akerman. As the installation highlights or displaces certain very personal forms of dramatization in the film, it makes clear -through an experience marked by "collective non memory" and the loss of the real- the intimate scope and narrative stakes of a radical, formal rigor."

A Spanish-English catalogue has been published, including essays by Senior Curator Catherine David and by argentine film critic David Oubina, and an autobiographical text by Chantal Akerman.


only in german

Chantal Akerman - An Autobiography