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Vies d'Artistes

The Cultural Services of the French Embassy is proud to present Vies d’Artistes, a series of four powerful and imaginative cinematic works.

Behind the beauty of a masterpiece lies the artist, driven by a never-ending desire to create. Exploring the fates of various artists in different times and places, Vies d’Artistes (Artists' Lives) delves into their diverse experiences and unique inspirations. Four artists, four lives tied to the same longing for emotional expression and freedom through the arts.

Van Gogh by Maurice Pialat

1991 | France | 158 min

January 14 | 7:00 p.m.

As one of Maurice Pialat’s masterpieces, Van Gogh retraces the last days of the Dutch painter’s life while exploring his complex relationships and declining mental health. Faithful to Pialat’s unsentimental and realist style, the film is renowned for its subtle anti-melodramatic approach to Van Gogh’s life. The film stars French actor Jacques Dutronc as Vincent Van Gogh, a role for which he won the 1992 César Award for Best Actor.

Gainsbourg (Vie Héroïque) by Joann Sfar

2010 | France | 130 min

January 28 | 7:00 p.m.

Gainsbourg (Vie héroïque) by Joann Sfar follows the famous French singer’s upbringing in occupied France, his first successes and complex love affairs. An audacious portrayal of the charismatic singer’s life, Gainsbourg is unconventional and imaginative in its use of fantastical elements representing the singer’s conscience at very crucial moments of his life. Perfectly embodying the dramatic intensity of the movie, the soundtrack includes many of Gainsbourg’s most famous songs.

Séraphine by Martin Provost

2008 | France and Belgium | 125 min

February 11 | 7:00 p.m.

Winner of the 2009 César Award for Best Film, Séraphine by Martin Provost dips in and out of the chaotic life of the little-known yet incredibly brilliant French painter, Séraphine Louis (1864 to 1942), who is masterfully interpreted by Yolande Moreau. As a middle-aged housekeeper, Séraphine has an outstanding talent for painting. She channels her passion for nature through arts, and meets a noted German art critic who is eager to promote her works. This ephemeral meeting, immediately complicated by the war, allows the artist to escape eternal anonymity. 

Sagan by Dianne Kurys

2008 | France | 117 min

February 25 | 7:00 p.m.

One of Dianne Kurys's exceptional films, Sagan features the life of the renowned French author, Françoise Sagan, interpreted by Sylvie Testud. In 1958, Françoise Sagan was 28 years old when her debut novel Bonjour Tristesse made her famous. Starting from the writer’s road to fame, the movie explores Sagan’s hedonistic lifestyle, from her drug use and alcoholism to her gambling and complex love affairs.

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