HR Giger (1940–2014) is best known for the nightmarish creatures and environments of 1979’s Alien, and more broadly for his transgressive (yet deeply stylized and stylish) paintings on broadly “biomechanical” themes. Much of Giger’s work, which in addition to the paintings and drawings for which he was best known included sculpture, industrial art, and even furniture, was created in his Zurich home studio, which he transformed over the decades into a real-world embodiment of his aesthetic.
Noriyoshi Ohrai (1935-2015) was a Japanese poster artist and illustrator known for his vivid work that elevated mainstream sci-fi and action tropes into hallucinatory, richly detailed compositions. In addition to his well-known posters for Star Wars and Godzilla, he created promotional artwork for thousands of films from Japan and around the world.
BARBARA LONDON’S VIDEO/ART: The First Fifty Years is both a personal memoir and a history of an artistic medium from its genesis to the present. The effortlessness with which these two undertakings coexist is a testament to London’s lifelong commitment to her subject matter: as the founder of NY MOMA’s video programs, she was instrumental in bringing a once-underground art form into the broader establishment.
New York in the 1970s was arguably the global epicenter of the fledgling new art form, with artists such as Nam June Paik, Beryl Korot, and Mary Lucier at the forefront.
FROM THE VERY earliest days of film, Berlin has made essential contributions to the medium, as both a center of production and a filming location. One of the most legendary silent films of all time, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, was made in Weißensee in 1920, part of a golden age when hundreds of films were produced in Berlin’s “Little Hollywood”.
All photos taken during Berlinale 2018, 15-25 February 2018.
THERE IS A vast openness – visually, thematically, atmospherically – to any given Tarkovsky film that feels easy to attribute to the monumental scale of Russia, both in its history and its sheer physical size. But this too-easy association belittles an artist who brought immense visions to life as much in spite of his homeland as because of it.
THE ROOTS OF Russian Cosmism lie in the transcendental utopian writings of the 19th-century philosopher Nikolai Fyodorovich Fyodorov, who advocated for, among other things, the exploration of space and a literal overcoming of death. Inextricably tied to the Russian Revolution and the rise of the USSR, Cosmism promoted broad ideals that mirrored the heart of Communism: that humanity should collectively strive to transcend the petty, temporary, and mundane.
THIS YEAR’S BERLINALE Festival—the 67th—featured a wide-ranging selection of curiosities from decades past, from thwarted epics to camp relics to vast, inscrutable psychedelia.