The Sun Panics

Lemesos International Documentary Festival in collaboration with The Island Club
Lemesos, Cyprus
5 - 8 August 2019

In honour of pioneering film director, screenwriter, actor and photographer Agnès Varda (1951-2019) this screening program of short films titled The Sun Panics begins with Du Côté de la Côte (Along the Coast, 1958) one of Varda's first films, a documentary travelogue filmed along the French Riviera which formed part of a series titled Courts Touristiques (“Touristy Shorts”) commissioned by the French Tourist Office. In dialogue with Du Côté de la Côte, a selection of recent short films follow the narrative thread of the perfect holiday experience each culminating to an encounter with the artificial. Beyond relating to Du Côté de la Côte thematically each film contains elements inspired by Varda's distinctive cinematic style which has been seminal in the formation of contemporary essayist and documentary film practices.

Agnès Varda, Du Côté de la Côte, 1958

26 min, video, colour, sound

"Everything seemed exaggerated and exotic. The palm trees, the villas, the colours, and all the tourists, the campers and all the dead, buried by the sea. I noticed that the best gardens, the most spectacular views, the private beaches and the most wonderous spots were reserved for those with private property. The more modest visitor to The Riviera in search of paradise - a costly one at that - found not Eden Roc but Eden Tack. I contrasted this with a maritime Eden, an island. Eden exists, it's dawn. I asked him to find a way to illustrate these very touristic images. So he wrote the music for a melancholy song. Yesterday the sun was at play. It was playtime, summertime. Our dazzling summer has now faded. The revelling summer is now jaded. How sad and silly the end of the party, the end of summertime." - Agnès Varda on Du Côté de la Côte

This film shows two women sitting together contemplating a printed sunset. Created by manipulating pre-programmed options on Illustrator, the artificial vectorial image printed on photographic paper depicts three phases of a sunset.
Andrés Baron (b.1986) received his MFA from l’École nationale supérieure des arts décoratifs in Paris and studied photography at the visual arts school La Cambre in Brussels. Recent solo exhibitions include Recordings, galerie untilthen (Paris, 2019), Mirror Travelling, Galerie de la Cité Internationale des Arts (Paris, 2018). His films have been screened at Fabrique du Regard, (Paris), Los Angeles Filmforum, Rotterdam IFF and FRAC Normandie (Rouen) among others. He lives and works in Paris.

Wellness oases, adventure worlds and resting places. In western society, great expectations are attached to the benefits of "free" time. It is a promise of salvation, which feeds on the work performance. The film essay "Frei Zeit" examines how this construct presents itself in public, private and media spaces and what potential for conflict arises when dreams collide with reality. Metaphorically, the question arises: how do we want to live?

Ulu Baun (b.1976) studied painting and experimental film at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and animation at the Film University Babelsberg in Potsdam. He has been using the medium of video to explore the field between the visual arts and auteur cinema since 1997 and he is one of the key figures who have transferred painting into video art. His works have been shown at KW Berlin, Hirshhorn Museum (Washington D.C.), Centre Pompidou (Paris), Kunstmuseum Bonn and Museo de Reina Sofia (Madrid) among others. He has received several awards such as the German Short Film Award (2013) the Berlin Art Prize (2014), Best German Film at Kurzfilmtage Oberhausen (2017), Arte Shortfilm Award (2017) and the Nomination for the European Film Award (2018). He lives and works in Berlin.

A film composed of still shots taken at Beijing’s World Park, built in the early 90’s featuring knock- off smaller scaler world monuments and landmarks. 

Junyuan Feng (b.1991) is a video artist. He received his BS in physics from Fudan University and a MFA in fine arts from the University of Pennsylvania. His recent projects include From a Cybernetic South to a Special-Economic-Zone South, Times Museum (Guangzhou, 2018), Building Code Violations III: Special Economic Zone, Times Museum (Guangzhou, 2018), Parentheses, David Nolan Gallery (New York, 2018), Double Vision, FJORD Gallery, (Philadelphia, 2017). He was a finalist for 2018 Huayu Youth Award. He lives and works in Beijing.

A film which explores the aesthetics and the moral and political consequences of nostalgia. Filter is primarily shot on digital video overlain with a filter which reproduces the effect of 8mm film, a literal integration of ersatz historicity into the work's visual DNA. The narrator's voice intrudes periodically, reflecting on the ways in which nostalgic sentiments have created a kind of simulacrum in which the past usurps the present and devours hope. Description by William Kherbek.Jaakko Pallasvuo (b. 1333) is an artist. Pallasvuo makes videos, texts, performances and installations that explore the anxieties of being alive now, and the prospect of living in some possible future. In recent years his work has been presented at The New York Film Festival, Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, Rotterdam IFF, kim?Contemporary Art Centre (Riga), Casa de Francia (Mexico City) and Jupiter Woods (London) among others. He lives and works in Helsinki.