Peter Doig: Museum Ludwig.
One of the first posters that Doig painted for his film series advertised Marcel Camus's Black Orpheus (1959). Here we see the outline of a solitary figure in a canoe, a motif familiar from Doig's paintings: An Orpheus on reflective water, evoking Cocteau's motif of the mirror as the portal to the underworld, to the unconscious. As in this instance, most of the posters bear an associative relationship to the film in question, playing on existing images and remembered visual experiences, reflecting formal and thematic concerns that can now be played through anew. Direct visual quotation or painted film stills are rather scarce, though the poster for the Coen brothers' The Big Lebowski (1998) depicts the film's protagonist in the house of his millionaire namesake as he gazes at a wall of photographs and certificates as though it were picture gallery. And it is, of course, no coincidence that Doig chose exactly this scene from a film that, in its pronounced reflection on genre and media, walked an idiosyncratic tightrope between independent and Hollywood film, thus constantly negating the possibility of an "authentic" image. Images, in all their seductive power, are in the last analysis always an excuse for further images, which can then take their own often unpredictable paths.
"Cinema as a 'creole' medium," writes the exhibition's curator, Alice Koegel, is "a medium on the move, which sends off cultures in the form of themes, techniques, and talents along many different routes." In many ways, Doig's exhibition sends the viewer on imaginary "travels"; it invites one, accompanying the posters, to follow his subjective turns and painterly interpretations through the history of film. And it also serves as publicity for the ambitious film series that Koegel, together with Doig and Lovelace, has organized in conjunction with the exhibition.
Translated from German by Sara Ogger.
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|Article Type:||Critical Essay|
|Date:||Nov 1, 2005|
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