Exhibition : October 1- November 9, 1997

Chris Marker
Immemory One, 1997
(production and edition Centre G. Pompidou, co-production Saint-Gervais, Geneva)

CD-ROM Marker

"In all that, the imaginary will have as much place as the memory strictly speaking" CHM

An installation comprised of a central unit which refers back to four computers, one of which is loop-locked whereas the other three are placed at the disposal of the public. Anyone can click on the menu as he or she wishes and so establish his or her own route in a labyrinth of images.

This CD-ROM is neither documentary, nor fiction, it laughs at frontiers and definitions. An actor or spectator involved in social and political reality in all the countries of the globe. Chris Marker through this work endeavours to bring together the fragments of the puzzle of his life. One can detect the origin of Immemory One in a sentence taken from Sans soleil ; "total memory is anaesthetised memory".

Immemory One is cut up into eight zones drawn most of the time from his personnal archives. This cutting out matches up with his centres of interest : travel, photography, cinema, memory, museum, war, poetry, death, etc... And the clicker is invited to travel as freely as possible within these zones which imply a certain number of internal bifurcations and inter-connections.

The best description of the content of this CD-ROM was found by Chris Marker in Robert Hooke, the man who had sensed the laws of gravity before Newton :

"I am now going to construct a mechanical model and a sensitive representation of Memory. I shall suppose that there is a certain spot or point in Man's brain where the Soul has its main seat. As for the exact position of this point, I shall say nothing at the moment and I shall today postulate but one thing, which is that there is such a place where all the impressions made by the senses are transmitted or received for contemplation and moreover, that these impressions are only Movements of particles of this Body".

Chris Marker, on his CD-ROM, "From this conception flows the possible structure of the disk, cut up into "zones" (...) The Madeleine point (to use Hooke's words) is found at the intersection of the Proust and Hitchcock zones. Each one of them in its turn matches up with other zones which are so many islands or continents (to use my words) of which my memory contains descriptions, and my archives, the illustration (...)".

Born in 1921, Chris Marker is a writer, essayist, photographer and film-maker, author of more than 35 films. He appears in the credits of Nuit et Brouillard (Alain Resnais) as second assistant and co-signs Les statues meurent aussi (Alain Resnais) in 1952. With La Jetée (1963) he continued on his own his exploration into the vestiges and the vertigo of time, but in a purely fictionnal way, doing so from photos alone. Some films and twenty years later, it was Sans Soleil which brought together the images re-worked on his Apple II GS, of a coming and going between the continents, and which has the form of a personnal diary. Level 5, his last film*, presents a woman (Catherine Belkhodja) whose task it is to reconstruct the battle of Okinawa in the form of a video game, at different levels. This tragedy interferes with her history (the loss of a man whom she loved). The images are re-worked with the Hyperstudio multimedia software.

The author, in particular of multimedia and multiscreen video installations : Zapping Zone, 1990 (Centre G. Pompidou) Silent Movie, 1995 (Wexner Center, Colombus)

*Broadcast on the evening of the opening of the 7th International Video Week, Biennal of the Moving Picture (Oct. 31, 8h30 p.m. at Saint-Gervais, Geneva)

Sources: Cahier du Cinema 515 (Thierry Jousse) art press 224 (Louis-José Lestocart). Centre G. Pompidou

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