Cinema before 1300 and Néstor Basterretxea, stars of the Contacts section, in which Punto de Vista combines documentary film with other disciplines.

Cinema before 1300 and Néstor Basterretxea, stars of the Contacts section, in which Punto de Vista combines documentary film with other disciplines.

This year audiences will get the chance to see a film with a talk by Jerome Hiler about how the gothic art of stained glass windows is related to film, and the homage to Basterretxea to take place at the Oteiza museum in this, his centenary year.

Once again this year, Punto de Vista seeks to cross over the boundaries of what is strictly documentary film in its Contacts section. The international festival, to take place in Pamplona from 11th to 16th March, is to bring to audiences different ways of thinking about and discovering reality. The forthcoming edition of Contacts will therefore be centred on Jerome Hiler, a figure in American avant-garde film, and Néstor Basterretxea, the Basque sculptor, painter and film director, as part of the activities being organised to mark the centenary of his birth, promoted by the Basque government and the artist’s family and coordinated by the Artium Museoa and involving institutions like the Bilbao museum of fine arts, the San Telmo museum, Tabakalera, Elias Querejeta Zine Eskola, Etxepare Instituta and the Punto de Vista festival itself, in cooperation with the Oteiza museum, among others.

Jerome Hiler (b. New York, USA, 1943) started filming in 1964. For most of his life, he only showed his films in private, and it was not until he completed Words of Mercury in 2011 that his recent work began to be screened and distributed. His work presents the articulation of colour and superimposition in an unprecedented way. His film work is rooted in meticulous study of the history of stained glass and his creative work in this craft. Thus, the festival will feature the international premiere of Cinema Before 1300, a film produced by the Harvard Film Archive in 2022. The film is based on the legendary lectures given over decades by Jerome Hiler on the convergence of technological, philosophical and economic achievements that led to the creation of the stained glass windows in European cathedrals, in his view the most advanced form of communication in the world up to then. Parallels with film can be seen in these works of art; in how visitors are awed by the spectacular light, colour and form they display. It will be complemented by a separate screening of his rarely-shown films. This will include the above-mentioned Words of Mercury (2010-2011), Marginalia (2016), Bagatelle I (2016-2018) and Ruling Star (2019). Both sessions will be curated by Francisco Algarín Navarro, the author together with Carlos Saldaña of the book Horas iluminadas. Nathaniel Dorsky y Jerome Hiler (Illuminated Hours: Nathaniel Dorsky and Jerome Hiler, Lumière, 2022).

The special programme about the figure of the multi-talented artist Néstor Basterretxea (b. Bermeo, 1924 – d. Hondarribia 2014) will include an audiovisual introduction to one of the leading renovators of the visual arts in the second half of the 20th century. The session, to be run in collaboration with the Oteiza museum, is one of the events in the centenary programme and features a set of experimental films made by the artist, together with others reviewing the creative imagination in his work. The programme begins with Alquézar. Retablo de Pasión, directed by Néstor Basterretxea and Fernando Larruquert in 1966, offers an expressionist approach to the aesthetics and forms of religious tradition at the time, not very far from what José Val del Omar was doing around the same time. Also screened will be Operación H (1963), a key piece in the career of both Basterretxea and Oteiza, who collaborated on the film. This is an experiment based on a commission by Juan Huarte to make an industrial documentary about his company's products and processes. Alongside these pieces there will be a screening of Collage Vivo, an experimental untitled film short in 16 mm by Basterretxea that features different photographs from illustrated magazines in collages created live by the author himself. Finally, two short films about the artist's work and career will be shown. An introduction to the life of Peio Aguirre in Un retrato de NB, through his photographic archive; and Jesús Mari Palacios' sketch of the memory of the former Universidad Laboral, a vocational training college in Tarragona, in LABO, a short that combines period shots with architecture today and the work of several visual artists, also including Basterretxea.

This section of Punto de Vista takes its name from one of the most overwhelming, unclassifiable films in the history of Spanish cinema, Contactos (Paulino Viota, 1970), which featured in the first Heterodocsias Rewind at the festival in 2010.

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Promoted by
Gobierno de Navarra
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With the aid of
Con la financiación del Gobierno de España. Instituto de la Cinematografía y las Artes Audiovisuales Acción Cultural Española Plan de Recuperación, Transformación y Resiliencia Financiado por la Unión Europea. NexGenerationEU

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