26.09.2016 Memorial screening of Abbas Kiarostami with Faraz Fesharaki
Kiarostami through a Close-Up
„I prefer a film which lets its audience take a nap in the theater, but won’t let them sleep at night after going out from the theater!“
That is Kiarostami’s definition of a good film, a simple and romantic idea, which somehow shows his relation to cinema as a medium — a medium which he always tried to define and redefine throughout his life as a filmmaker; a medium that according to him was not chosen purposefully by him. He was supposed to be a painter, he was a graphic designer, did illustrations for children’s books, was a photographer, wrote poems and coincidentally came to be a filmmaker. But maybe the fact that cinema was never the only medium he used made him think, rethink and analyze its strengths and specificities and push its borders so far that everybody talked about a redefinition of cinema by Kiarostami, or as Godard said, the end of cinema.
Close-Up, which is described by many – including Kiarostami himself – as the climax of his filmic oeuvre, is a unique film in film history. It is a film based on a story which might be more adequate for the local newspapers, but which is narrated in a complicated form, somewhere between documentary and drama, and which philosophizes about the essence of cinema/art and the position of the filmmaker/artist.
With this film as a basis, we will have a quick look into Abbas Kiarostami’s world, including films, photos, poems and videos.
Faraz Fesharaki (1986) studied cinema and then dramaturgy on the Art University of Tehran. There in Iran he started making documentaries and short films which were shown in international festivals. He attended Abbas Kiarostami’s Workshop, after that he entered German Film and Television Academy Berlin (dffb) to study camera. He is now based in Berlin as a cameraman.