Ellsworth Kelly Selects
Ellsworth Kelly’s six-year sojourn to Paris on the G.I. Bill, from 1948 to 1954, constituted his most formative period. There, he not only embraced chance as an aesthetic principal and ended his fleeting affair with figuration and gestural abstraction, but he also encountered a French cinematic tradition. The three films in this program, selected by Kelly, evidence his debt to a Parisian avant-garde sensibility and reflect his skeptical, unsentimental eye. Although all three are in broad strokes love stories, they resist the saccharine and build worlds where fortuity, however joyful or cruel, can bring people together or rip them apart: Jacques Tati’s modernist masterpiece Playtime (screening in 70mm), Jean Renoir’s legendary comedy of manners Rules of the Game, and Jacques Becker’s belle époque noir romance Casque d’or.
All notes written by Max Rifkind-Barron.