Seasons - Artist portraits | Tabakalera - Donostia / San Sebastián

Artist portraits

Burden, by Richard Dewey and Timothy Marrinan

Burden, by Richard Dewey and Timothy Marrinan

“To reveal art and conceal the artist is art’s aim.”
Oscar Wilde in the preface to The Picture of Dorian Gray

 

Portrait. Portrait in the history of the cinema. The portrait of artists in the history of cinema. One can never forget Van Gogh-Kirk Douglas or Edith Piaf-Marion Cotillard coming to life in Technicolor and on a big screen, the drama of lives fully given over to creation. We are not talking about that though; we are talking about something else. We start a Season which, using Oscar Wilde’s statement as the point of departure, will allow us, for a quarter, to reflect upon the capacity of cinema to portray the artist and his creative process and the relationship between both. But not from the biopic or the representation of his/her life. From the documentary and creative standpoint.

We depart from the figure of the contemporary artist almost always hidden away in his studio, as Wilde would say. Some questions arise: how does he create? Why? What are his/her processes, doubts, gestures, times, pauses, decisions? Is it possible to explain? Is it possible to grasp the moment when things happen? What happens before? After? And, going one step further: Is the work of art some sort of biographical portrait? Or vice-versa?, as Master Wilde would say as well.

Tabakalera, as a centre of contemporary creation where resident artists work and live alongside each other, proposes a season comprising seven titles, all of them premières at the festival circuit in 2016 that reflect how contemporary cinema has portrayed and portrays the creative act. Richard Burden, a performance pioneer; Oda Jaune, a Bulgarian painter; Rose Wylie from her studio in Kent, England; Carte blanche to an artist to choose his/her favorite film; Trisha Brown at the Paris Opera; the essays by Angélica Liddell, playwright and winner of the national award for playwriting; and poets Ingeborg Bachmann and Paul Celan, reinterpreting their own work.