Michel Auder – Heads of the Town

Michel Auder – Heads of the Town

Michel Auder has seldom neglected to record an event in his life and, over the course of these
40 years of filmmaking, he has slipped into a variety of roles: silent participant, obsessive
voyeur, discreet accomplice, or simple observer. Auder’s singular approach has earned him
worldwide recognition. His films are found in the Anthology Film Archives in New York and have
been exhibited in major international museums including the Museum of Modern Art in New
York, the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam, and the Centre Pompidou in Paris. In 2008 his
works were shown at the European Kunsthalle in Cologne, at the Statens Museum for Kunst in
Copenhagen and at the Berlin Biennale.
In November 2008 he won the New Vision Award at the CPH:DOX Film Festival in Copenhagen
for The Feature, an artistic collaboration with director Andrew Neel. In his role as the fictional
protagonist, Auder reflects on the stations of his real life as a filmmaker, junkie, and partner of
Warhol’s muse Viva and, later, the artist Cindy Sherman. The French experimental filmmaker,
who lives in New York, was present for The Feature’s world premiere at the 58th Berlinale and is
now returning to Berlin one year later in time for this year’s film festival.
Heads of the Town, Auder’s first solo show in Berlin, employs installation to realize a unified
vision of sound and video. Although these recent works have little in common with the
seemingly “authentic” documentary style of his video diaries, Auder’s current approach – at
times reminiscent of Jean-Luc Godard’s Passion – remains self-referential in its treatment of
the work of art and the medium of film. All the same, Michel Auder has never viewed himself as
a documentarist. The artist Jonas Mekas wrote about Auder: “And yes, Auder is a poet; he isn’t
a realist. A poet of moods, faces, situations, brief encounters, tragic moments of our miserable
civilization, the suffering. And yes, also human vanity, ridiculousness.”

Aurel Scheibler

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