04 janvier 2009

Aryan Papers

Pictures of Dutch actress Johanna Ter Steege trying on dresses of the early forties, for Stanley Kubrick's Aryan Papers.

The Aryan Papers is as much about a film that never happened as it is a portrait of the chosen lead actress Johanna ter Steege. It begins with images of Johanna taken in 1993 by Stanley Kubrick - they are of the wardrobe shoot for the film Aryan Papers. Johanna was to play the lead role of Tania, a compelling character. Tania is central to the film: she is a Polish Jew trying to save herself and her family from the Nazis.

When we visited the Kubrick Archive, we were intrigued to look at the detailed research for a film that never made it into production. The amount of research is overwhelming and it seems to have overwhelmed Kubrick himself. The research left him very depressed and he abandoned the project.

The work takes its title from Kubrick's film and, intercut between stills of Johanna, are images from the archive of specific scenes Kubrick wanted to recreate and images from the Ealing Studios Archive of interiors, shot in 1939/40. The film moves into live action with footage of Johanna filmed now, fifteen years later, where she appears to come to life, recreating stills from the original wardrobe shoot.

Jane and Louise Wilson

• Jane and Louise Wilson's installation will be at the BFI Southbank, London, from 13 February to 19 April.

1 commentaire:

Daniel Kasman a dit…

Wow! I never knew about this material, nor that it would in some manner be publicly viewable. Kubrick's history trying to make a Holocaust film is interesting, and these images acquire an unusual meaning considering many of the reasons why he shut down the project. Somewhat apt considering what we were talking about yesterday; Kubrick's partial decision that he simply couldn't make (represent) a Holocaust movie, yet traces of its production remain...what does that mean?