Takashi Murakami’s ‘Jellyfish Eyes’ to Headline Film at Art Basel in Basel

Takashi Murakami, Jellyfish Eyes (2012). Masashi and Saki. Photo: courtesy Takashi Murakami/Kaikai Kiki Co., Ltd., and Blum & Poe, New York.

Takashi Murakami’s first feature film, Jellyfish Eyes (see Takashi Murakami’s Jellyfish Eyes Is a Balm for Tsunami Trauma), will headline the film sector at the upcoming Art Basel in Basel (see Here Is the 2015 Exhibitor List for Art Basel in Basel), screened at the Stadtkino Basel movie theater.

The program of film and video work drawn from the fair’s dealers has been selected by Cairo-based film curator and lecturer Maxa Zoller (see Maxa Zoller Taking Over Art Basel Film). Zoller is known for her roaming experimental film screening series hosted everywhere from independent art spaces to institutions such as London’s Tate Modern.

“The challenge of curating the film program is to find works of art that can ‘make it’ on the silver screen,” said Zoller of the curatorial process in a statement. “Not all artists are filmmakers, even if they work with moving images. The cinema demands works that are able to respond to its conditions; an understanding of the rhythm of time and the framing of space.” She describes this year’s selections as “rigorous, sumptuous, surreal, playful and political (with a minor ‘p’!).”

Jellyfish Eyes, a sort of post-Fukushima fairy tale populated by adorable, if pugilistic, Pokémon-like creatures, will be shown Monday, June 15, at 8:30, followed by a question and answer session with Zoller and the artist.

Hassan Hajjaj will also be on hand at 8:30 on Wednesday, June 17, to discuss Karima: A Day in the Life of a Henna Girl, his first feature film. The movie offers a glimpse into the lives of the woman of Morocco’s Jemaa el-Fnaa market, a common thread in the artist’s work.

On Thursday, June 18, at 8:30, cinema verite director Agnes Varda will tackle the problem of food production and waste with “Food (in) Chains,” a curated program of artist films.

The fair will also feature the first European screening of Lisa Immordino Vreeland’s Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict on Saturday, June 20, at 7:30, as selected by This Brunner, the founder of Art Basel film. The documentary on the art lover’s life, collection, and sexual exploits was recently on view at the Tribeca Film Festival (see Peggy Guggenheim Documentary by Lisa Immordino-Vreeland Reveals Life of Nonstop Art and Sex).

Films by Julieta Aranda, Katie Armstrong, Will Benedict & David Leonard, Pauline Boudry & Renate Lorenz, Duncan Campbell, Kimsooja, Oliver Laric, Karolin Meunier, Laure Provost, Michael Snow, Mounira Al Solh, Agnès Varda, and Kan Xuan will round out the selections, along with a Short Film program on Tuesday, June 16, at 8:00.

Art Basel in Basel’s Film program will run June 15–20, 2015.

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