Germaine Dulac was a feminist and socialist artist and thinker of the 1920s and ’30s whose bold experimentation helped legitimize cinema as an art form that would be on the same footing as painting, dance, theater, and music. Best known for The Seashell and the Clergyman, her 1927 collaboration with Antonin Artaud, Dulac straddled the worlds of commercial and experimental cinema, playing with narration, montage, and visual effects, and making the case, in both films and writing, for a “Pure Cinema” approach that took full advantage of the medium’s unique properties. For her, only cinema was up to the task of capturing the spirit of a generation scarred by World War I, who were emancipated by the new freedoms of the 1920s, and whose daily lives had been shaped irreversibly by industrialization and social and cultural modernity. The Film Society is pleased to present a survey of work by this pioneering figure of French avant-garde and queer cinema.
Organized by Amélie Garin-Davet and Dan Sullivan, in collaboration with curatorial advisor Tami Williams. Co-presented with the Cultural Services of the French Embassy, New York.