February 19, 2010 - BFI Southbank - Mat Collishaw
February 19, 2010

Mat Collishaw

Mat Collishaw
26 February – 9 May 2010

Belvedere Road
London SE1 8XT


Contemporary artist Mat Collishaw has created a new commission in response to the highly creative work of the late Georgian/Armenian film director and artist Sergei Paradjanov (1929 – 1990), whose work make him one of the most visionary directors of all time.

To coincide with our wider celebrations of the work of Paradjanov at BFI Southbank taking place in March, Collishaw has created a mesmerizing new exhibition for the Gallery inspired by the work of the Armenian director. For the project the artist has used a combination of antique objects and contemporary forms of moving image devices, from traditional photographic stills to digital imaging techniques in order to make a new installation which is defined by his very distinctive style and yet poetically conveys the spirit of Paradjanov’s artistic endeavor.

Collishaw and Paradjanov share a very perceptive understanding of the mechanics of beauty, which they both exploit in their art, especially through the juxtaposition of heterogeneous elements, of framing devices and a sensual use of colour. In the influential Shadows of our Forgotten Ancestors (1964), Colour of Pomegranates (1968) and Ashik Kerib (1988), films which show Paradjanov’s trademark style, each shot is a three-dimensional collage simultaneously self-standing and integral to the film, where heterogeneous elements are juxtaposed, framed and re-framed; where narrative is continuously fragmented. Similarly, in the Gallery, by projecting several, distinct images onto real historical objects, Collishaw fuses the moving image’s two-dimensionality with the three-dimensionality of sculpture; furthermore the unexpected re-framing of the newly shot footage creates a sense of displacement. Collishaw uses digitally manipulated images he shot in Armenia together with found images – still and moving – which he frames within authentic, antique sculptural objects and which he distorts through the use of mirrors. In so doing the real is stylised and re-framed in order to convey further meaning and to create a fairytale-like world where good and evil, sacred and profane, love and violence merge.

Supported by the Henry Moore Foundation and Arts Council England.

Gallery opening times: Tue – Sun (and Bank Holiday Mondays) from 12:00 – 20:00
Free admission



Mat Collishaw in Conversation
with Elisabetta Fabrizi, BFI Head of Exhibitions
to explore the inspiration behind Retrospectre and its development.
Tue 13 Apr 18:20 NFT3

Shadows of Sergei Paradjanov: A Symposium
On the life and work of this 20th-century visionary and his contemporary legacy.
Sat 6 Mar 11:00 – 17:00 NFT3

Retrospectre by Mat Collishaw coincides with a season of rarely seen Sergei Paradjanov feature films, shorts and documentaries about his life and work:

The Colour of Pomegranates
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1968
+ Kiev Frescos
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1965
Mon 1 Mar 18:00 NFT1 (with season extended introduction by Tony Rayns)
Sun 7 Mar 18:30 NFT1

Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1945
+ Sergei Paradjanov: The Rebel
Dir. Patrick Cazals, 2003
Tue 2 Mar 18:20 NFT2
Mon 8 Mar 20:40 NFT2

The First Lad
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1958
Tue 2 Mar 20:40 NFT2
Wed 10 Mar 18:20 NFT2

Ukrainian Rhapsody
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1961
Wed 3 Mar 18:20 NFT1
Fri 12 Mar 20:20 NFT2

Flower on the Stone
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1962
+ Paradjanov: A Requiem
Dir. Ron Holloway, 1994
Wed 3 Mar 20:15 NFT2
Thu 11 Mar 18:00 NFT2

Shadows of Our Forgotten Ancestors
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1964
Thu 4 Mar 18:00 NFT1 (with introduction by Ian Christie)
Mon 15 Mar 20:50 NFT1

The Legend of Suram Fortress
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1984
Thu 4 Mar 20:40 NFT2
Sun 7 Mar 20:15 NFT2
Mon 8 Mar 18:20 NFT3

Ashik Kerib
Dir. Sergei Paradjanov, 1988
Fri 5 Mar 18:30 NFT1
Sat 6 Mar 18:20 NFT2 (with introduction by Roman Balayan)
Tue 9 Mar 14:00 NFT2 (seniors matinee, with introduction and discussion)
Sun 14 Mar 20:50 NFT2

I Died in Childhood
Dir. Georgy Paradjanov, 2004
Fri 5 Mar 20:50 NFT3
Sun 14 Mar 18:20 NFT2

For further information please visit www.bfi.org.uk/whatson or www.bfi.org.uk/gallery.
BFI Southbank, Belvedere Road, London SE1 8XT
Box office: 020 7928 3232 (11:30 – 20:30 daily)

BFI Southbank
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