Alain Fleischer

Biography

Alain Fleischer was born in Paris in 1944

After studying literature, linguistics, semiology and anthropology at the Sorbonne and at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales, he taught at the Université de Paris III, the Université du Québec à Montréal, and a number of art, photography and film schools (including IDHEC/FEMIS in Paris). Winner of the Prix de Rome, he was a resident at the Villa Medici from 1985 to 1987. He was tasked by the French Culture Ministry with conceiving Le Fresnoy – Studio National des Arts Contemporains, which he now directs.

Filmmaker, writer, artist and photographer.

Filmmaker

His 350 films range widely across genres, from fiction (“Dehors-Dedans,” 1974-75; “Zoo Zéro”, 1977-78; “Rome Roméo,” 1989, “Les grands artistes et le veilleur de nuit,” 1994-96, etc.), to experimental cinema (“Montage IV,” 1968, “Le règlement,” 1969; “L'aventure générale,” 1982-84; “L'homme du Pincio,” 1993, etc.), and art documentaries (“Quelques activités de Christian B.,” 1970; “Pierre Klossowski, portrait de l'artiste en souffleur,” 1982; “L'art d'exposer: le Musée Condé à Chantilly,” 1984; “À la recherche de Christian B.,” 1989; “Le Louvre imaginaire,” 1993; “Le Cow boy et l’Indien - Quelques rendez-vous avec Jean-Jacques Lebel,” 1993; “Pierre Klossowski, ou L'éternel détour,” 1995-97; “Un monde agité,” 2000; “Le Roi Rodin,” 2002; “Sans terre, ni mère,” 2004; “Du côté de Vitebsk” 2005. In 2006/2007 he made “Centre Pompidou, l’espace d'une Odyssée,” a film commissioned for the thirtieth birthday of the Centre Pompidou; “Morceaux de conversation avec Jean-Luc Godard”; in 2007, “Le frivole et le complexe, la dentelle d’Alenço”; in 2008, “Anthony Caro, la sculpture comme religion”; in 2009, “Choses lues, choses vues”; in 2010, “Eugène Leroy, la voie royale de la peinture”; “Yann Kersalé, les aventures de la lumière,” “Une photographie de la maison,” commissioned for the fifteenth birthday of the Maison Européenne de la Photographie, “Constantin Brancusi”; and in 2012, “Joseph Kosuth en Italie.” In 2009-2010, he started work on three films: on the Louvre at Abu Dhabi, on the Louvre at Lens, and on a three-way dialogue with Christian Boltanski and Georges Didi-Huberman.

Alain Fleischer’s films have been shown at many international festivals: Cannes, Berlin, Rotterdam, Hyères, New York, London, Venice, etc. They have won several prizes at the International Festival of Films on Art in Montreal.
To date, there have been six retrospectives of his films:

  • In 1994, at the Musée National d'Art Moderne/Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris
  • In 1996, at Anthology Film Archives, New York
  • In 1998-99, at the Galeries Nationales du Jeu de Paume, Paris.
  • In March 2002, for its 20th edition, the International Festival of Films on Art in Montreal paid homage to Alain Fleischer’s films on art.
  • In June 2002, at the International Festival of New Cinema in Pesaro.
  • In April 2003, in Minsk (Belarus)

Photographer and visual artist

Fleischer’s artistic and photographic work has been shown in numerous solo and group shows, in galleries and museums in France and internationally. A retrospective of work from 1970 to 1995 (photographs, installations, etc.), produced by AFAA (Ministère des Affaires Étrangères), toured to museums and art centres in Brazil, Canada, the Netherlands, Spain, Argentina and Cuba. The Centre National de la Photographie presented the photographs in a solo show in 1995, concurrently dedicated no. 62 in its “Photopoche” collection of photography books to his work. The Maison Européenne de la Photographie (Paris) held a retrospective of the photographs and installations in October 2003, parallel to a retrospective of the films at the Centre Pompidou and an exhibition of recent works at Galerie de France. In 2005 the House of Photography in Moscow exhibited the photographs in a show titled A World Illuminated by Images. Major exhibitions of the photographs and installations have been mounted at the Guangdong Museum in Canton, at the National Arts and Crafts Museum in Beijing, and at the Sungkok Art Museum in Seoul in 2006, at the Singapore Art Museum and at the Chagall Museum in Vitebsk in 2008, and at the Franco-Japanese Institute in Tokyo in 2010.

In 2000, Alain Fleischer represented France at the Kwang-ju Biennale (Korea), at the Havana Biennale (Cuba), and in Australia in the exhibition Sporting Life, held at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Sydney on the occasion of the Olympic Games. In 2005, during French Year in China, he featured in the exhibition Paris to Shanghai, Three Generations of French Photographers at the Museum of Fine Arts, Shanghai. Also, in 2005 his photographs were shown at the Kunsthalle Düsseldorf in The Flip Book Show, and at the House of Photography in Moscow (March) and the Institut Français in Kiev, Ukraine (October). In 2007 he exhibited at the Institut Français in Prague (April) and at the Maison de France in Mexico City (September).

In 2009 he collaborated with architect Jean Nouvel on his project for Greater Paris. In 2010 he made the film and audiovisual apparatus for the exhibition by designer Patrick Jouin at the Centre Pompidou.

Author

The author of some fifty books of fiction and criticism (novels short stories, essays on photography and cinema), Alain Fleischer has recently been particularly prolific in his fiction writing, publishing twelve books with Le Seuil in short succession:

  • « La femme qui avait deux bouches », 1999
  • « Quatre voyageurs », 2000
  • « Les trapézistes et le rat », 2001
  • « Les ambitions désavouées », 2003
  • « Les angles morts », 2003
  • « La hache et le violon », 2004
  • « L’accent, une langue fantôme », 2005
  • « L’amant en culottes courtes », 2006
  • « Quelques obscurcissements », 2007
  • « Le carnet d'adresses », 2008
  • « Réponse du muet au parlant.En retour à Jean-Luc Godard », 2011

And with other publishers :

  • « La traversée de l’Europe par les forêts » (short story, Editions Virgile, 2004)
  • « La vitesse d’évasion » (catalogue and essay, Editions Léo Scheer, 2003)
  • « Tour d’horizon, un théâtre de la fin » (Editions Léo Scheer, 2003)
  • « La femme couchée par écrit » (essay, interface and short story, Editions Léo Scheer, 2005)
  • « Eros/Hercule », (essay, La Musardine, 2005)
  • « Immersion » (novel, Gallimard, 2005)
  • « 599 » (essay, short story and phtotographs, Editions Contrasto, Rome, 2007)
  • « L’ascenseur » (Editions du Cherche Midi, 2007)
  • « Prolongations » (novel, Gallimard, 2008)
  • « Les laboratoires du temps » (writings on the cinema and photography vol. 1, Galaade Editions, 2008)
  • « Moi, Sandor F. » (novel, Fayard, 2009)
  • « L’empreinte et le tremblement » (writings on the cinema and photography vol. 2, Galaade Editions, 2009)
  • « Descente dans les villes » (short stories, Fata Morgana, 2009)
  • « Caméras » (essay, Actes Sud, 2009)
  • « Courts-circuits » (novel, Le Cherche-Midi, 2009)
  • « Imitation » (Acte Sud, 2010)
  • « Le dernier tableau de Gauguin » (Editions du Huitième jour, 2010)
  • « Simon Hantaï, vers l’empreinte immaculée » (Edition Invenit, 2011)
  • « La Pose de Dieu dans l'atelier du peintre » (écrits sur le cinéma et la photographie 3, and other texts, Galaade Editions, 2011)
  • « Conférenciers en situation délicate » (Editions Léo Scheer, 2012)
  • « L’Impératif Utopique - Souvenirs d'un Pédagogue » (Galaade Editions, 2012)

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