Brighton’s Keen
October 30, 2012
November 9, 2012

William Klein @ Tate Modern


By Diarmuid Hester


“A lot of people say to me, ‘Why don’t you live in America?,’ and I say, ‘If I lived in America I’d be dead by now.’ If I saw Cheney and Bush on TV, and Nixon and Westmoreland and all those people, I’d have a heart attack every morning. I can’t stand that sort of shit!”
– William Klein, quoted in Marc James Léger, “Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Obama But Were Afraid to Ask Mr. Freedom,” One+One: Filmmakers Journal Issue 9
Last week, One+One found out about an exhibit at Brighton Museum and Art Gallery on the work of one of our favourite filmmakers, Jeff Keen, entitled “Shoot the Wrx” which runs until 24 February 2013. This week, we heard about a new show at the Tate Modern focusing on filmmaker William Klein, whose work is juxtaposed with the photos of Japanese artist Daido Moriyama. The website invites you to:
Explore modern urban life in New York and Tokyo through the photographs of William Klein and Daido Moriyama. This is the first exhibition to look at the relationship between the work of influential photographer and filmmaker Klein, and that of Moriyama, the most celebrated photographer to emerge from the Japanese Provoke movement of the 1960s. With work from the 1950s to the present day, the exhibition demonstrates the visual affinity between their urgent, blurred and grainy style of photography and also their shared desire to convey street life and political protest, from anti-war demonstrations and gay pride marches to the effects of globalisation and urban deprivation.
We were particularly excited about the inclusion of Klein in this show (and about the season of his films which runs at the Tate Modern until January 2013) as his incendiary and antinomian perspective resonates with that of One+One and his work is, in fact, featured in the upcoming issue of One+One: Filmmakers Journal. Canadian artist and cultural theorist Marc James Léger, in his article, “Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Obama But Were Afraid to Ask Mr. Freedom,” reassesses the critical response to Klein’s iconoclastic 1969 film Mr Freedom in the light of Barack Obama’s continuing war on terror – particularly pertinent critical co-ordinates as today, citizens across the United States prepare to vote for the next American president.
Issue 9 also includes new articles by Bradley Tuck and James Marcus Tucker, an essay by Nick Hudson on his film-music project Letters to the Dead and an interview with Savage Witches filmmakers and One+One editors, Daniel Fawcett and Clara Pais.
Look out for it early next month!