Agnès Varda’s directorial debut, La Pointe Courte (1954), anticipated the French New Wave with its documentary feel, associative editing, and bold, tableaulike imagery. Her later films Le Bonheur (1964) and One Sings, the Other Doesn’t (1977) are considered touchstones of feminist cinema. And with such innovative documentaries as Uncle Yanco (1967) and The Gleaners & I (2000), Varda developed a singular approach to the nonfiction form, delivering essays that proceed like uninterrupted trains of thought. “CinéVardaExpo”, a season-long celebration of Varda’s art, considers her filmmaking in relation to her parallel career as a still photographer. From September 11 to November 8, the Logan Center for the Arts will host an exhibit of her photography and video installations (playfully titled “Photographs Get Moving (Potatoes and Shells, Too)”), and from October 8 through 15 that same venue (along with Music Box and Black Cinema House) will present a partial retrospective of Varda’s films. According to festival programmers, the films in the series “highlight Varda’s feminist perspective and reveal new connections between her longstanding fascination with photography, color, and ‘mise-en-scene as installation.'” The 87-year-old artist will be in town to introduce most of the screenings, teach master classes at the University of Chicago, and take part in a few public programs. Even if Varda wasn’t attending, the retrospective would be big news. The screenings include the rarely revived One Sings, the Other Doesn’t (1977) and the local premiere of her 2011 essay-film series “Agnès Varda: From Here to There,” which documents the director’s world travels and visits with famous artist friends.
Exhibit 9/11-11/8. Agnes Varda From Here to There, Thu 10/8, 5 PM (episodes one and two) and 7 PM (episodes three through five); One Sings, the Other Doesn’t, Sat 10/10, 4 PM, University of Chicago Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th, 773-702-2787 arts.uchicago.edu.