In Focus: Shorts by Agnès Varda, Program 1: Play and Politics
A former director and curator of the Pacific Film Archive and cofounder and codirector of the Telluride Film Festival, Tom Luddy was a friend and collaborator of Agnès Varda.
These short films made in the sixties are both political and playful, in keeping with the times. A collection of photographs Varda took on her visit to Cuba in the winter of 1962–63 forms the basis of the innovative Salut les cubains, narrated by Varda and actor Michel Piccoli, which captures the revolutionary spirit and reveals individuals alive with hope for the future. A snapshot of Bay Area hippiedom in full flower, Uncle Yanco is a portrait of Varda’s uncle, Sausalito artist Jean Varda (to whom the filmmaker was introduced by former Pacific Film Archive curator and film producer Tom Luddy). The film’s images are as vibrant as Yanco’s paintings and the man himself. An important document of a different facet of Bay Area culture, Black Panthers depicts rallies in Oakland demanding Huey Newton’s release from prison, and features activists including Stokely Carmichael, Kathleen Cleaver, and Newton.
Films in this Screening
Salut les Cubains
Agnès Varda, France, 1964
Agnès Varda, United States, 1967
Agnès Varda, United States, 1968