The Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAMPFA) and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will co-present a major retrospective of films by Agnès Varda, the first significant presentation of the acclaimed director’s work since she passed away in March 2019.
“Agnès Varda: An Irresistible Force” marks the West Coast premiere of this national touring retrospective organized with Janus Films, which encompasses much of Varda’s work from the last six decades—including new restorations, rarely screened shorts, and a preview of Varda’s final film, Varda by Agnès.
SFMOMA’s portion of the series begins on January 9 with Cleo 5 to 7, one of Varda’s most renowned early works. The series continues at BAMPFA through February 28 and at SFMOMA through March 21 and includes guest appearances at both venues by former Pacific Film Archive Director and Curator Tom Luddy, who collaborated with Varda on two films.
This film program represents the tenth installment of SFMOMA’s Modern Cinema program, which seeks to highlight the ongoing dialogue between the critically acclaimed filmmakers of the past and present.
An icon of international art cinema for more than sixty years, Agnès Varda (1928-2019) was an influential figure in the development of the French New Wave and the only female director associated with the movement. Her remarkable debut feature, La Pointe Courte, made when she was 26, predated and inspired the New Wave movement. Widely acclaimed for her early narrative features like Cléo from 5 to 7 and Le Bonheur, Varda went on to create a vast and eclectic body of work that included numerous shorts, documentaries, photography, and installations.
A full list of screenings is available and at https://bampfa.org/program/agnes-varda-irresistible-force and https://www.sfmoma.org/event/series/modern-cinema-agnes-varda/.