Friday, September 17, 2010

Ma voisine Agnès Varda

So I'm all moved into my new apartment in Paris, where I'll be studying French literature, cinema, and art history for the school year. Though I'm considering moving in with a friend in a few weeks, my current studio is in the 14th arrondissement near Montparnasse. My landlord was kind enough to show me around the neighborhood on the day I moved in, and I discovered that not only did Simone de Beauvoir live in a townhouse a few streets over until the mid-1980s, but New Wave filmmaker Agnès Varda, née "La Varda," currently resides just one street over from me, in a charmingly unconventional bright pink house. Her office is just across the street, and though it was closed on the day I passed by, I'm hoping to go check it out sometime soon-- or maybe just run into Agnès herself one of these days!

Chez Agnès

her office across the street

"La Varda" was one of the sole female filmmakers involved in the Nouvelle Vague. Born in Brussels, she studied photography at L'École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, and later married filmmaker Jacques Demy. Her first major film, about a singer who falls ill, was Cléo de 5 à 7. Her most recent work, the surrealist filmic autobiography Les Plages d'Agnès, came out in 2008. Check out her work if you haven't already, she's incredibly talented (not to mention the cutest little old lady on earth)!!

an early photo of Demy and Varda

More on Paris to come soon. Bisous!

Below, a trailer for Les Plages d'Agnès:

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