Presented by the Lithuanian Culture Institute in partnership with MUBI and Serpentine Cinema, this evening featured the pioneering film-maker Jonas Mekas in conversation with Hans Ulrich Obrist, as well as a screening of his 2012 film, Outtakes from the Life of a Happy Man. This event marked the publication of his latest book, Conversations with Film-Makers, (published by Spector Books) which gathered his many interviews for his weekly column in the Village Voice between 1958 and 1977.
Pioneer avant-garde film-maker, poet and artist Jonas Mekas (born in Lithuania in 1922) was the barometer of the New York art scene in the 1960s and ‘70s. His interviews with Andy Warhol, Stan Brakhage, Susan Sontag, John Cassavetes, Carolee Schneemann, Yvonne Rainer, Claes Oldenburg, Kenneth Anger and Michael Snow, among many other avant-garde artists and filmmakers are gathered together for the first time in the substantial publication, Conversations with Film-Makers.
Originally recorded by Mekas using film cameras, still cameras and tape recordings, 60 conversations have been transcribed. Peppered with photos or stills from his films, each interview is a record of the artistic vision of the late 20th century and also a wonderful book and visual document of these noted artists. Letters and extracts from related scripts and an index supplement the texts.
Jonas Mekas lived and worked in New York. A film-maker, writer, and poet, he was the co-founder of Anthology Film Archives, one of the world’s largest and most important repositories of avant-garde film. Mekas’s work has been exhibited in museums and festivals worldwide. A survey of his work was presented at the Serpentine Gallery in 2012-13.
Serpentine Cinema is the Serpentine Galleries’ series of performances, talks and screenings by artists and film-makers held in a cinema context.