PRINT April 2001


Inez van Lamsweerde

Inez van Lamsweerde’s photography was the subject of a recent survey (with husband Vinoodh Matadin) at the Groninger Museum in Groningen, Netherlands. Their advertising work includes campaigns this season for Balenciaga, Helmut Lang, and Gucci.

  1. ERIC ROHMER, L'Anglaise et le Duc

    I have no idea when it will be released, but I can’t wait to see this eighty-year-old French writer/director’s first digitally shot period movie. Apparently all the scenes are filmed against a blue screen, with the characters dropped into hand-painted sets in postproduction. It seems quite a departure from Rohmer’s naturalistic depictions of suburban love triangles for which the gorgeous actresses–he likes a specific type of girl with wavy hair, extraordinary eyes, and a thin mouth—usually style themselves, create the sets, and sometimes decide on the music as well. None of his movies, though, lacks for brilliant, sensitive conversation that gives way to a literary investigation into the female psyche caught up in a web of coincidence and desire.


    Finally this October we’ll be able to see this young painter’s work in full force at his first New York solo show, at Roebling Hall in Brooklyn. Well, painter . . . Bremer turns photographs, found or snapped, of himself and his family into trippy, dusty memories that, thanks to his layered pointillist technique, reveal the subconscious and the real world in the blink of an eye. By laboriously painting his poetic braille over fast snapshots, Bremer slows down time to render hauntingly beautiful interior landscapes.

    Sebastiaan Bremer, Avila, 1999–2000, ink on color photograph, 20 x 24" Sebastiaan Bremer, Avila, 1999–2000, ink on color photograph, 20 x 24"
  3. BRUCE STERLING, Tomorrow Now

    Forget the ’60s sci-fi optimism and the ’90s apocalyptic vision of the future. Tomorrow, according to Sterling, could never be worse than today. His novels are clever sociological reviews of the future that take their beginnings from fantasizing on an in-depth knowledge of the technological, medical, cultural, and political transformations that drive social change. His idea of the look and feel of the twenty-first century will be written up in this next work, which he calls a “nonfiction book of anticipation.”

  4. PAUL VERHOEVEN, Christ, the Man

    It takes a Dutchman, of course, to become simultaneously a blatantly mainstream representative of and a subversive underground figure in America’s number one cultural product: The Movies. The man who gave us films like Turkish Delight, Basic Instinct, Total Recall, Showgirls, and Starship Troopers now turns his ruthless point of view on religion. Having given his diagnosis of American society, he is about to hold a mirror to our perception of the mystery man of all time. Although Verhoeven has flirted with the figure of Christ before—he’s even called his RoboCop an American Jesus—the new film is supposed to give a serious account of the political, economical, and cultural context of Jesus, based on fifteen years of methodical research.

  5. BJÖRK, Vespertine

    This Icelandic girl, of such radical and generous spirit, has produced an entire new album herself, working with a 120-member choir and orchestra at the same time. It’s an album about finding paradise at home, in the smallest things, just as she did while creating it. Appearing with her are friends like Matmos, Opiate, and Harmony Korine, some of whom will join her on tour. The first single, “Hidden Place,” is pure elegance and intimacy on an epic scale.

  6. STÉPHANIE COHEN, Camille Judith Claire

    June will see the first novel by this brilliant young writer who in my opinion will revolutionize French literature as we know it. With Camille Judith Claire, Cohen’s publisher Denoël is inaugurating the series “Format Utile,” dedicated to atypical literary work. Unique is what I would call Cohen’s fragmented, confrontational, partly autobiographical, and uncompromisingly beautiful way of handling language on paper. Apart from all that, the book contains one of the most breathtaking descriptions of love ever penned.

  7. M/M, Café Montorgueil

    Ever wanted to have a drink in a bar in Paris that didn’t look like a leftover from the Napoleonic era? Plan a trip to France in October, which is when the latest project by Paris-based art directors Michael Amzalag and Mathias Augustyniak, in collaboration with artists Pierre Huyghe and Philippe Parreno, will be completed. A café commissioned by the Costes family located at the Rue Etienne Marcel, the place will feature a robot DJ that forever plays the 2,001 songs the four boys chose to be programmed into its brain at the time of construction.

  8. NICOLAS BOURRIAUD, Palais de Tokyo

    The French are really getting it together by appointing Bourriaud as the codirector of the new museum of contemporary art in Paris opening at the end of the year (see interview, pp. 47–48). He describes the Palais de Tokyo as a kunsthalle-cum–production company that will address global issues yet remain driven by the problematics of contemporary art. There will also be the Pavillon, an international program for artists, serving as an experimental satellite. Before going so large-scale, Bourriaud was responsible for putting young French artists into context in his book Esthétique Relationnelle, in which he verbalizes the current generation’s obsession with producing art that allows one to experience a time and space rather than creating material objects that remain at a remove from the social world—a personal art that reinvestigates the relation between human beings and the larger system.

  9. CHRIS CUNNINGHAM, Neuromancer

    I can’t wait. It’s about time someone made a film out of William Gibson’s brilliant cyberpunk novel, and who better than Cunningham, the director of such insanely beautiful music videos as Aphex Twin’s “Windowlicker” and Björk’s “All Is Full of Love”? Scheduled to be released God knows when, this one should be so full of visual overdrive that it could influence decades of fashion, art, and lifestyle in general. Gibson’s Neuromancer imagines the emergence of a mass digital collective consciousness in an unspecified future. These data take a shape that, when artificial intelligence is inserted into the mix, becomes some sort of deity. Can’t wrap your head around it? Try making it into a film.


    I can't wait for this one either.