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FUGITIVE BEAUTY – THE FILMS OF ROBERT CAHEN

The first ever Scottish screening of the films of Robert Cahen, one of the most important and influential video artists of our generation.

FUGITIVE BEAUTY - THE FILMS OF ROBERT CAHEN

Directed by: Robert Cahen
Scottish Premiere

Running time: 01:20:00
Year: 1973-2007
Country: France

Just le temps (13m) 1983

Robert Cahen's uniquely poetic experimental filmmaking spans a period of 40 years. Exploring the fleeting qualities of perception, he treats filmed reality as an ephemeral and mutable substance, transforming it through a vision rich in subjective meaning. Often formally experimental, using electronic techniques of image manipulation to challenge our perceptual preconceptions, his films are also powerfully visual and deeply affecting.

A selection of his works will be shown, including his seminal 1983 work Juste le temps (13m), Voyage d'hiver (19m) and Sept visions fugitives (33m).

  • The screening will be introduced by the artist and writer Chris Meigh Andrews, who will afterwards lead a discussion with Robert Cahen about his work. There will also be an audience Q&A. This is the first ever screening of Robert Cahen's work in Scotland


    Voyage d'hiver (19m) 1995


    Sept visions fugitives (33m) 1995

    Biography/Filmography:

    From Electronic Arts Intermix:

    "Recognized as one of France's foremost video artists, Robert Cahen has since 1972 produced a distinguished body of work for cinema and television. In Cahen's uniquely nuanced world, fiction and document alike are presented as metaphoric voyages of the imaginary, exquisite reveries that describe passages of time, place, memory and perception. Genres such as narrative and performance are expanded and transformed as he explores visual, aural and temporal transformations of represented reality.

    From the formal elegance of Cartes postales vidéo (Video Postcards) (1984-86) to the intricate musical and visual transitions of Boulez-Répons (1985), Cahen's work is characterized by a sophisticated application of electronic techniques that manipulate sound and image, space and temporality, resulting in subtle transmutations of the illusory and the real. Building on his extensive research in acoustics, music, and filmmaking, he plays with the textures of sound and image to restructure representational modes, from the optical to the sonic, from the "picturesque" photograph to the conventions of narrative cinema. Resonating with wit and charm, executed with technical precision, his works allude to both formal and thematic motifs of travel, movement, and transition. Cahen's dreamlike journeys depict fleeting glimpses of a transitory reality, transformed in time within the pictorial frame.

    Robert Cahen was born in Valence, France in 1945. He graduated from the Conservatoire National Superieur Musique de Paris, and was a member of the Groupe de Recherche Musicales de l'ORTF (the Office of French Radio and Television) from 1971-74. From 1973-76, he was director of Experimental Video for ORTF/INA. Many of his film and video works have been produced in conjunction with Institut National Audiovisuel (INA), the French television production facility. His videotapes have been broadcast and exhibited internationally, at institutions and festivals including the Paris Biennale; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; American Film Institute National Video Festival, Los Angeles; World Wide Video Festival, The Hague; International Center of Photography, New York; Documenta 8, Kassel, Germany; FestRio, Brazil; Tokyo Festival; and the Festival of Locarno, Italy."

    Cahen lives in Mulhouse, France, in the Alsace region, close to the Swiss and German borders.

    Chris Meigh Andrews:
    Chris Meigh-Andrews is an artist, teacher, writer and curator. Born in Essex, England in 1952, he lived and worked in Montreal, Canada from 1957-75. On his return to the UK, he studied photography, film & TV at the London College of Printing (1976-79), Fine Art at Goldsmiths (MA, 1981-1983) and at the Royal College of Art. (PhD, 1996-2001). His book, A History of Video Art: the Development of Form and Function is an important critical introduction and guide to artists' video.

    For more, please see his website www.meigh-andrews.com

    See also:

  • Robert Cahen at the Daniel Langlois Foundation
  • ZKM | Media Museum 2011
  • Robert Cahen and Chris Meigh Andrews interviewed by Terry Flaxton
  • Robert Cahen search on Vimeo or Youtube.
  • Robert Cahen - Films + videos 1973-2007 (DVD)

    Artist's Website: http://www.eai.org/artistBio.htm?id=294

    Venue: Main auditorium - Heart of Hawick, Tower Mill
    Screening date: Friday 26th October
    Screening time: 7.30pm
    Tickets: £4
    Programme: Auditorium Features