How can we organise a retrospective on a filmmaker who never made a film? How can we put together a series of programmes that unveil his ideas on screen? Are we before the great heterodox? Someone who did not finish a single film aware of the fact that his idea was always superior to the result? At Punto de Vista, as lovers of challenges, we have leapt into the unknown and assumed the risk of filling four afternoons of film devoted to the non-existent work of Jorge Oteiza.
A verse, a border sculpture, a geographical journey, the Apostles, a house… are some of the sources of inspiration of the filmmakers in these first sessions devoted to the sculptor-poet-filmmaker… to the artist, in one word, Jorge Oteiza. Having stolen the title from our festival mentor, Jean Vigo, this About intends to be a heartfelt tribute and demonstration of how a filmmaker like Oteiza, in spite of not having any films of his own, has not stopped provoking it in others. Here, we are not dealing with the documentaries that have been made on him and his work. It is not a film that explains his life and miracles, but the film that emerges from him to establish particular works by each author, works derived from seven different outlooks based on the Oteiza universe but not necessarily remaining with him. This is Oteiza’s film as a muse, divided into two sessions, personal and free film, which he undoubtedly also dreamt of making.
“Man hides in film, like we hide as children in a hole on the beach. There is no possible dialogue with today’s man who seeks to escape the hard reality. If we wait for him at the statue, he doesn’t come. If we are in the novel, he doesn’t enter either. However, the man who escapes enters film. It is necessary to wait for this man who flees and use cinematographic narration inside the film”.
Third session on the artist from Orio in which we offer his greatest and scarce film treasures from his archive, making them all the more valuable. It is a session especially built for the festival and never shown, in which two super8 films shot by Oteiza himself will be put on screen, as well as sound recordings that he left with instructions and ideas on film creation, along with some other emotional surprises, such as Oteiza singing Iru gabean in Basque, a song that he himself wrote and which was later put to music by Oskarbi. The session essentially consists of two sound archives and two films, in addition to the short film directed by Nestor Basterretxea, Operation H, in which Oteiza participated in some ideas and in its making, and which is important for the purpose of this session, which is to raise awareness of the artist’s bulbaceous film attempts through outlines and ideas.
Final session devoted to Oteiza and which combines the Basque artist with this year’s theme of the festival, flight, through images and theatre. Oteiza in flesh and blood will reveal his theories on flight faced with a winged animal in the depths of a cave that is reminiscent of the sky or in his ideas of a cemetery like an empty airport. Oteiza spoke of flight a lot and wrote various poems like the beautiful I know I will fly. As the poet, Carlos Aurtenetxe, said “In Oteiza, everything falls, even flight”. The final culmination of this flight without a destination is the moon. Bil Argi for pre-Indo-European studies which Jorge Oteiza said was not the light of the dead as in today’s Basque, il argi, but a more cinematographic moon, bil argi, translated as light that moves and fades away, a fugitive moon like the one we will see next after this gala in the final film: Our Century by Artavazd Pelechian. The Basque artist and the Armenian filmmaker are united in the flight towards the unknown.