Making Curriculum Pop

These are both presently playing in NYC .... hopefully I'll get a chance to see them and report back. They both look very interesting and teachable.

Official Site:

SÉRAPHINE is the story of Séraphine Louis aka Séraphine de Senlis (Yolande Moreau), a simple and profoundly devout housekeeper who in 1905 at age 41, self-taught and with the instigation of her guardian angel began painting brilliantly colorful canvases. In 1912 Wilhelm Uhde (Ulrich Tukur), a German art critic and collector - he was one of the first collectors of Picasso and champion of naïve primitive painter Le Douanier Rousseau - discovered her paintings while she worked for him as a maid in his house in Senlis outside Paris. A moving and unexpected relationship develops between the avant-garde art dealer and the visionary cleaning lady leading to Séraphine’s work being grouped with other naïve painters – the so-called “Sacred Heart Painters” - with acclaimed shows in France, elsewhere in Europe and eventually at New York’s MOMA . Martin Provost’s poignant portrait of this now largely forgotten painter is a testament to the mysteries of creativity and the resilience of one woman’s spirit.

Official Site:

Varda's cinematic memoir is a brilliant 'menage' of archival footage, photo montages and reenactments along with some extraordinarily inventive elements that deliver Varda's recollections and musings on her life, loves and art in as a complete package of compelling impressions.

At age 80, Varda has a lot to tell, and she recounts her story with a panache that's both intoxicating and inspiring.

From the New York Magazine Review:
Agnès Varda manages to be full of herself without seeming … full of herself. Perhaps that’s because her self is full of so much other stuff: friends, photos, films, buildings, and beaches. The Beaches of Agnès is a cinematic reverie, a prowl among the signifiers of a life lived behind and in front of the lens, with lots of complementary chatter. It’s not as elegant as The Gleaners and I, her gorgeous ode to fellow compulsive clutterbugs. But it’s so profoundly goofy you forgive it everything, like the opening on a beach in which young people arrange mirrors and screens to set up the idea of the film as … a series of mirrors inside screens; or her toddling backward through places she once lived because she’s … going backward in time; or her filming people filming her to remind you this is … a film. Round and ebullient in her eighties, she’s unquenchably expansive, more so than in her youth, and she’s canny too: The bric-a-brac forms an organic whole, bound together by her delight. CONTINUED here.

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