Yup, I’m a fan. Love, love, love his films and have a (recently acquired) respect for his work as a painter.

Just under the wire (the show closes Jan. 2/10), I saw the retrospective of his work at the AGO; Julian Schnabel: Art and Film. Great show, and very, very inspiring to a painter/filmmaker like yours truly. If you’re not familiar with his films, I highly encourage you to check them out- Basquiat, Before Night Falls, and The Diving Bell and the Butterfly. (His latest, Miral, is due out in March)*

or, in english, "The Diving Bell and the Butterfly"

Before I sign off for the year, I thought I’d share my favorite Julian Schnabel moment (from The Diving Bell and the Butterfly):

A man is imprisoned in his body by a stroke and for the majority of the first part of the film, we feel his immobility through an intense POV- He can only see out of one eye and Schnabel makes it real for the viewer. When the sense of claustrophobia is at it’s worst, and begins to feel really unbearable, Schnabel cuts to an image of wild movement (and sets it to a pounding rock song!). It took me a minute to realize what I was even looking at when I first saw it, but gradually realized it’s the back of a woman’s head, and her hair is blowing a million different ways as she rides in a convertible! It felt like such a release and was pure, cinematic joy- I think it’s one of the best expressions of the idea of freedom ever put on film.

So, thanks for the great art and inspiration, Julian Schnabel!

& Happy New Year!

*He also directed the documentary Lou Reed Berlin, which I have yet to check out, but I’m sure it’s very good.


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