I was made to feel that in various ways, and particularly because of my way of speaking. They talk, for example, about immigration and migration, from the Eastern European Jews of her grandparents’ generation in Histoires d’Amérique (American Stories, 1988) to her own discovery of New York in News from Home (1976), stylistically marked by the experimental cinema of Michael Snow and Jonas Mekas but accompanied by her mother’s letters from Brussels (which Akerman herself reads in voice-over). CA: Yes, but that came later, when I had already made a lot of films. MR: On the question of time, I’d have thought that today people would be more used to your way of working. . CA: No, I don’t think it was to prove that I had access to real French literature. . MR: Finally, to return to “minor literature,” which you spoke about in an interview over twenty-five years ago, here’s a question that I have today: With this retrospective at the Centre Pompidou and everything that surrounds it, the fact of being featured at Beaubourg and exhibited at the Marian Goodman Gallery, you are no longer really “minor.” How does that realization sit with you? This is cinematic beauty on an elemental level, with cinema as the recording of what will one day be gone and the beauty as a presence that announces its disappearance. Chantal Akerman, the Belgian filmmaker, lives in New York. The City comes more and more to the front while the words of the mother, read by Akerman herself, gradually fade away. Frontal view of an airy, white-walled, white-curtained apartment furnished with worktables and chairs (three each), computers (two). An effort that, like the peeling of potatoes in Jeanne Dielman, the endless waiting lines in D’Est (From the East, 1993) or the deportation of “dirty” immigrants in De l’autre côté (From the Other Side, 2002), is common to her “story” and ours. But that suits me, in fact. BOMB Magazine has been publishing conversations between artists of all disciplines since 1981. Frankly, I don’t feel it. Chantal Akerman (in Lettre d’un cineaste), 1984 A rose is a rose is a rose, but it’s not an apple. CA: You know, when most people go to the movies, the ultimate compliment—for them—is to say, “We didn’t notice the time pass!” With me, you see the time pass. It came out that way, yes. English 8; Document: publication year. Such is the beginning of Chantal Akerman by Chantal Akerman (1996), a first in the history of the venerable French public-television series Cinema, of Our Time, each installment of which had been—until then—one filmmaker’s profile of another. All of a sudden, I thought of that, and I said to myself, if I make images like this, en face, then it’s not idolatrous. As he takes his place front left, a slight, dark-haired woman in a dark jacket and pants enters and sits down on the chair front right. The TIFF six-week retrospective, News from Home: The Films of Chantal Akerman, is a rich survey of the late avant-garde feminist filmmaker, whose work so often featured an apartment kitchen. Akerman’s unforgettable time capsule of the city is also a gorgeous meditation on urban alienation and personal and familial disconnection. According to Isabelle Regnier, of Le Monde, she committed suicide.Neither Akerman… Whereas in France or in Belgium—for example, on my first school paper, the teacher wrote, “colloquial.” I went to a “high-class” high school, and I never felt like I belonged. I’m the one who does the framing. MR: If I’m not mistaken, you never shoot your own images but always use a camera operator—from the beginning all the way to From the Other Side, in which you employed a mix of media, including your own small digital-video camera. artforum.com is a registered trademark of Artforum International Magazine, New York, NY. Rather, after a fleeting reference to her intrepid beginnings in Brussels at the age of eighteen and the early years with practically no money and no audience, she enumerates what the “good cow salesman” would point out: “language, documentary, fiction, Jews and the second commandment . Join our newsletter for a weekly update of recent highlights and upcoming events. MR: Texts are everywhere in your films. Annually, BOMB serves 1.5 million online readers––44% of whom are under 30 years of age––through its free and searchable archive and BOMB Daily, a virtual hub where a diverse cohort of artists and writers explore the creative process within a community of their peers and mentors. BOMB's Oral History Project is dedicated to collecting, documenting, and preserving the stories of distinguished visual artists of the African Diaspora. What’s interesting about this is not solely geographical, because you’re always on the border between various domains of creativity, various genres, various media . I’m speaking here of what we call documentaries. There’s also the case of static shots where nothing happens, like in Hôtel Monterey [1972], where you see a hallway and nothing else. The images of New York in the late 1970s are accompanied by a voice over of Akerman herself, reading letters she had received from her mother. Yet the intimacy is there. In all these so-called documentary films, there are always different layers. For example, she now says, “I am going to doctor,” as you would in Polish. There are still “French people.”. For example, in D’Est, we see people standing in line, and the shot lasts seven or eight minutes. Now it’s a little harder to get money. I’m the one who decides. CA: That’s true, but I’m always very close to the image. —MR. The Belgian-born, Paris-based director Chantal Akerman died on October 5th, at the age of sixty-five. MR: No, I don’t think you’re becoming part of the establishment, but getting that kind of recognition changes your relationship to the world. . By stepping out of the way, Akerman allows one to see and hear what she sees and hears. Cast: Chantal Akerman. Photography: Babette Mangolte, Luc Benhamou. Editing: Francine Sandberg. Walsh, Maria (2004) 'Intervals of Inner Flight: Chantal Akerman's News From Home'. 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