Prospero’s Books

Directed by Peter Greenaway

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Prospero's Books, Peter Greenaway's celebrated cinematic adaptation of Shakespeare's The Tempest, interweaves dance, opera, and mime into its narrative. A palimpsest of filmed and animated images, Prospero's Books, starring John Gielgud as Prospero, the former duke of Milan who was exiled with 24 of his books, was a pioneering work in the digital manipulation of the cinematic image.

Warning: this film contains nudity and may not be suitable for some audiences.

Cinematic Chimera presents works that strive for a radical synthesis of artistic genres, reviving the notion of the Gesamtkunstwerk, or total artwork. United by their integration of theater, dance, music, architecture, literature, and visual art, these films also realize the Gesamtkustwerk’s technological imperative by making use of advanced cinematic techniques.

Emily Berçir Zimmerman

Born in Wales and educated in London, Peter Greenaway trained as a painter for four years, and began making films in 1966. He has continued to make cinema in a variety of ways, which has informed his curatorial work and exhibitions and installations in Europe, including the Palazzo Fortuny, Venice; the Joan Miró Gallery, Barcelona; the Museum Boijmans van Beuningen, Rotterdam; and the Louvre, Paris. He has made 12 feature films and over 50 short films and documentaries, been regularly nominated for the Cannes, Venice, and Berlin film festivals, published books, written opera librettos, and collaborated with composers Michael Nyman, Glenn Branca, Wim Mertens, Jean-Baptiste Barrière, and Philip Glass, among others. His first feature film, The Draughtsman¹s Contract (1982), was critically acclaimed and established him internationally as an original film maker, a reputation consolidated by the films, The Cook, the Thief, his Wife & her Lover and The Pillow Book. He lives in Amsterdam.

Prospero’s Books
February 10, 2011, 7:30PM

EMPAC 2010-2011 presentations, residencies, and commissions are supported by grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts (with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation; additional funding from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, the Community Connections Fund of the MetLife Foundation, and the Boeing Company Charitable Trust), and the New York State Council for the Arts. Special thanks to the Jaffe Fund for Experimental Media and Performing Arts for support of artist commissions.

Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation
National Endowment for the Arts
NEFA - New England Foundation for the Arts
State of the Arts - NYSCA