Albert Serra brings eighteenth-century sex to Reina Sofía | Culture

Albert Serra brings eighteenth-century sex to Reina Sofía | Culture

Albert Serra, in his installation. In the video, a fragment of 'Personalien'. The images can hurt the sensitivity of the viewer.

Albert Serra smile. A guard of the Queen Sofia has confessed to a journalist that after a while watching his installation Personalized I felt that I "put" it. And the filmmaker (Banyoles, 43 years old) celebrates with pride and good humor. You have achieved your goal with the installation Personal, commissioned by Reina Sofía Museum within the program Fissures "It has helped me to get rid of the thorn that stuck with me Liberté, the play I wrote for the Volksbühne hall in Berlin, for which I inspired in the world of the Marquis de Sade and in which I could not develop the tension between intimacy, exhibitionism and voyeurism, "he tells the installation.

So Serra has recreated 45 minutes of cruising (sex in public places) on a night in a forest with illustrated eighteenth century. "I imagine they are expelled from the court of Louis XVI, a very puritan monarch." In two immense screens of 6 by 3.5 meters, inside a dark room, sexual encounters are seen in that night of voyeurism and desire without restrictions. Some of the characters have arrived in palanquin and float, others walking. From there, social borders are blurred. There are no servants, servants or lords. "Neither are critical judgments nor moral sanctions issued. No dramatic evolution of the participants. Only desire appears, "says the director, who is finishing his new feature film - an extension of this cruising- after the success of The death of Louis XIV. Serra plays with the images: sometimes they share a point of view, at other times they see different actions that do not even coincide temporarily. "The advantage of cinema over theater is that the narrative gains in complexity. It allows you to venture who looks, why. And I put the viewer in the middle of the action, who enjoys a sound and an image that sometimes synchronize, sometimes not ... A man looks through a spyglass and sees himself, suddenly another runs to hide and we do not know why. I have meditated a lot on the result and I have used only the most atmospheric and conceptual part of what we recorded for 20 days. I liked that in the end the mechanical repetition of the novels of the Marquis de Sade was made ".

Together with this installation (open until May 13), the museum programs the cycle I also. Desire and crime. Carte blanche to Albert Serra, with five projections of radical creators like Koji Wakamatsu or Shuji Terayama, of the new Japanese wave, or better known as Paul Morrisey Y Ulrich Seidl. "They are authors united by a stark version. I am very impressed by the documentary work of Seidl. How will you get those testimonies? "

For your Personal, the filmmaker has turned to professional actors of cinema and theater, friends and volunteers summoned by Facebook. Serra takes advantage of his immersion in the eighteenth century to highlight concepts that bother him in today's society. "In that forest there are neither handsome nor ugly, nor vanity ... Those things, so important in life [ironiza], they cancel out among the trees. The sexual drive does not understand reasons or categories, privacy is skipped. Desire unites us to human beings like no other feeling or reason. And it entails something unsettling -which does not appear in my installation, but in today's life- as it is to perceive the gaze of others on our body, a raw vision of our flesh, "he reflects. "A friend told me that the images look like pictures of the Disasters of war, of Goya. They would be the Disasters of desire ".


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