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Release Date: October 23, 2017

National Gallery of Art 2017 Fall Film Season Incorporates Early Soviet Masterworks, Restorations from Czech National Film Archive, John Akomfrah Retrospective, Classic Ciné-Concerts, Agnès Varda's Latest Film, Washington Premieres, Filmmaker Discussions, and a Collaboration with American Film Institute in the Screening of Wings with Original Musical Score 

Image from "The Stuart Hall Project" to be shown at the National Gallery of Art on Saturday, November 18, 4:00 p.m. as part of the film series "Lateral Time: John Akomfrah and Smoking Dogs Films". Image courtesy of Lisson Gallery, London.

Image from The Stuart Hall Project to be shown at the National Gallery of Art on Saturday, November 18, 4:00 p.m. as part of the film series Lateral Time: John Akomfrah and Smoking Dogs Films. Image courtesy of Lisson Gallery, London.

Washington, DC—The National Gallery of Art 2017 fall film program, which runs from October through December 2017, celebrates the art of the cinema with several new film series: The Flaherty Seminar  (October 1–7), the longest-running film exhibition forum in the United States, brings together academics, artists, students, and curators for critical viewing, study and debate in an annual gathering in rural upstate New York and encourages a guest curator to select a theme; the Gallery presents six films with the respective themes of "play" and "future remains." Revolutionary Rising: Soviet Film Vanguard (October 13–November 12) highlights the artistic significance of early Soviet filmmakers, whose films, although made for Soviet audiences, were exhibited internationally. 2017 marks a century since the 1917 October Revolution, an event that shook the world politically and empowered revolutionary art and artists; From Vault to Screen: Czech National Film Achieve (October 21–29) highlights five restorations of ground-breaking works from the early sound period, including recent rediscoveries. Also included is a new digital restoration of Black Peter, Miloš Forman's early New Wave masterwork of the 1960s.

The series Lateral Time: John Akomfrah and Smoking Dogs Films (November 5–December 10) surveys the Ghanaian British filmmaker's works for screen and television with 16 single-channel films from the influential Black Audio Film Collective (BAFC) to newer works by the present iteration of the collective known as Smoking Dogs Films. The Warrior, the Reader, the Writer: Fantasy Figures in French Period Film (November 25–December 1) presents three French films set in the 18th-century in honor of the exhibition Fragonard: The Fantasy Figures, on view in the West Bulling through December 3, 2017.

Other highlights include the Washington premiere Immortality for All: A Trilogy on Russian Cosmism (November 19, 4:00), introduced by Anton Vidokle with special guests artist Amy Halpern, film historian Aboubakar Sanogo, and scholar Kelley Conway, who is delivering this year's annual Rajiv Vaidya Memorial Lecture (December 3, 2:00) on the career of Agnès Varda, followed by a screening of Varda's most recent work Visages Villages. Shown in conjunction with the exhibition Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Painting: Inspiration and Rivalry, the film Vermeer, Beyond Time (December 20-23 and 27-30 at 12:00 and December 31 at 2:00) focuses on the artist's family life, his artistic contemporaries, his conversion to Catholicism, and the wider world of the 17th-century Dutch Golden Age. The filmmakers explore specific paintings searching for what has become known as the Vermeer style.

Ciné-concerts include performances by the Alloy Orchestra; silent film accompanists Andrew Simpson, Stephen Horne, and Dennis James; and film score composers Donald Sosin, pianist and Joanna Seaton, vocalist. Special appearances are scheduled for Peter Rollberg (October 21), Michael Bregant (October 28 and 29), Aboubakar Sanogo (November 18), Anton Vidokle (November 19), Reece Auguiste (December 2), Kelley Conway (December 3), and Peter and Harriett Getzels (December 16). The National Gallery of Art collaborates with the American Film Institute in a special Veterans Day presentation of Wings (1927, William Wellman) on Saturday, November 11, 2017, 3:40 pm., at the Silver Theater in Silver Spring, MD. Christine Niehaus, pianist, performs the original score.

The National Gallery of Art's film program provides many opportunities throughout the year to view classic and contemporary cinema from around the world. Through screenings, scholarly notes, filmmaker discussions, and unique introductions by critics and academics, the program encourages viewers to learn more about the history of the cinema and the role of media in society. Programs are free of charge, but seating is on a first-come, first-seated basis. Films are screened in original formats in the East Building auditorium unless noted otherwise. Doors open approximately 30 minutes before each show. Programs are subject to change.

Film Schedule

The Flaherty Seminar
October 1 – 7

The Human Surge preceded by La Libertad
October 1 at 4:00

Death and Devil preceded by Compositions
October 7 at 1:30

Fish Tail preceded by Katatsumori
October 7 at 3:30

Special Events and Appearances

Havarie
October 8 at 4:00
Philip Scheffner in person

Falling Lessons
October 14 at 12:00
Amy Halpern in person

Capitaine Thomas Sankara
October 15 at 4:00
Washington premiere
Introduced by Sally Shafto

Immortality for All: A Film Trilogy on Russian Cosmism
November 19 at 4:00
Introduced by Anton Vidokle

Ciné-Concert: The Crowd
November 24 at 2:30
Stephen Horne, pianist

Ciné-Concert: Blue Jeans
November 25 at 1:00
Donald Sosin, pianist, and Joanna Seaton, vocalist

Rajiv Vaidya Memorial Lecture: Agnès Varda and the Art of the Documentary
December 3 at 2:00
Lecture by Kelley Conway

Visage Villages
December 3 at 4:00
Recent work by Agnès Varda

Zuzana: Music Is Life
December 16 at 12:00
Peter Getzels and Harriet Gordon Getzels in person

Ciné-Concert: The Student Prince
December 16 at 3:30
Dennis James, organ

My Journey through French Cinema
December 17 at 4:00
December 23 at 2:30

Vermeer, Beyond Time
December 20, 21, 22, 23, 27, 28, 29, and 30 at 12:00
December 31 at 2:00

Revolutionary Rising: Soviet Film Vanguard
October 13–November 12

The year 2017 marks a century since the 1917 October Revolution, an event that not only shook the world politically but also empowered revolutionary art and artists and spawned a synthesis within the arts urging sociopolitical change. Large-scale, state-sponsored experimental filmmaking—at a time when commercial imperatives were already dominant—was one of the results of this revolutionary rising. Made for Soviet audiences, many of these films were nonetheless exhibited internationally. This series, revisiting a few of these landmarks, recognizes their pioneering aesthetic. According to Lenin, "Of all the arts, for us the cinema is the most important." With special thanks to Alla Verlotsky, the series is a co-presentation of the National Gallery of Art and the American Film Institute Silver Theatre.

The Fall of the Romanov Dynasty
October 13 at 2:30

Ciné-Concert: Man with a Movie Camera
October 14 at 4:00
Alloy Orchestra in performance

Ciné-Concert: Mother
October 21 at 4:00
Andrew Simpson, pianist
Introduction by Peter Rollberg

Ciné-Concert: Old and New (The General Line)
November 4 at 2:30
Andrew Simpson, pianist

Ciné-Concert: Fragment of an Empire followed by Earth
November 12 at 4:00
Andrew Simpson, pianist

From Vault to Screen: Czech National Film Archive
October 21–29

Five restorations of groundbreaking Czech modernist works from the early sound period (including recent rediscoveries), in addition to a new digital restoration of Black Peter, Miloš Forman's early New Wave masterwork of the 1960s, are presented in partnership with Národní Filmový/National Film Archive, Prague. With special thanks to the Czech Embassy, Washington, and to Michal Bregant, executive director of the National Film Archive of the Czech Republic.

On the Sunny Side followed by Such Is Life
October 21 at 1:30

Ecstasy (featuring Hedy Lamar)
October 22 at 4:00

Tonka of the Gallows
October 28 at 2:30

Black Peter
October 28 at 4:30
Introduction by Michal Bregant

From Saturday to Sunday
October 29 at 4:30
Introduction by Michal Bregant

Lateral Time: John Akomfrah and Smoking Dogs Films
November 5–December 10

Ghanaian British filmmaker John Akomfrah's work asks audiences to engage with colonialism and the African diaspora through memory and montage, creating meaning by connecting history with lived experience. Across exhibition contexts, in gallery settings through immersive multichannel installations, and also in the cinema space, Akomfrah is a leading voice in contemporary time-based media art. This series surveys Akomfrah's works for screen and television with sixteen single-channel films from the influential Black Audio Film Collective (BAFC) to newer works by the present iteration of the collective, known as Smoking Dogs Films. With thanks to John Akomfrah, Lina Gopaul, David Lawson, Emma Gifford-Mead, and Lisson Gallery, London. Film historian Aboubakar Sanogo, Carleton University, Ottawa, and BAFC cofounder Reece Auguiste, University of Colorado Boulder, introduce selected screenings.

The Nine Muses
November 5 at 4:30

The Genome Chronicles and Other Shorts
November 11 at 2:00

Tropikos preceded by Peripeteia
November 18 at 2:30
Introduced by Aboubakar Sanogo, Carleton University, Ottawa

The Stuart Hall Project
November 18 at 4:00
Introduced by Aboubakar Sanogo, Carleton University, Ottawa

Urban Soul followed by Oil Spill: The Exxon Valdez Disaster
December 2 at 12:30

Handsworth Songs followed by Twilight City
December 2 at 3:30
Introduced by Reece Auguiste, University of Colorado Boulder,
 cofounder of Black Audio Film Collective

Testament preceded by The Last Angel of History
December 9 at 2:30

The March preceded by Seven Songs for Malcolm X
December 10 at 4:00

The Warrior, the Reader, the Writer: Fantasy Figures in French Period Film
November 25–December 1

To complement the exhibition Fragonard: The Fantasy Figures, this series presents three French films set in the eighteenth-century. Character types as much as portraits, fantasy figures (in painting and film) offer viewpoints into different walks of life. Three of the most compelling paintings, including the Gallery's own Young Girl Reading, provide the point of departure into this cinematic exploration of professional life in eighteenth-century France.

Fanfan la Tulipe
November 25 at 3:30

Farewell, My Queen
November 26 at 4:00

Beaumarchais, l'insolent
December 1 at 2:30

Press Contact:
Sarah Edwards Holley, (202) 842-6359 or [email protected]

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