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As the title suggests, the documentary/fiction hybrid film The Work and Days (of Tayoko Shiojiri in the Shiotani Basin) examines labor and the passage of time. Set over the course of five seasons in a mountain village near Kyoto, it makes only fleeting concessions to anthropocentrism. That isn’t to say there aren’t characters or story arcs — there are, the film just forgoes exposition and asks the audience to pay attention and pick up on what they can as it goes. Directors C.W. Winter and Anders Edström believe that the characters’ surroundings, their furniture and décor, even the look and sound of their environment can all tell the viewer more about their community than any close-up ever could.
Indeed, there are a handful of moments where the screen goes black for a few minutes, forcing the audience to focus on the sounds of the world — birds and crickets sometimes, cars and other mechanical sounds at others. There are also several prolonged dialogue-free sequences, some depicting agricultural labor in long takes and others more closely resembling Ozu’s flavorful “pillow shots.” Winter and Edström worked closely with the community (which includes Edström’s in-laws, who play themselves) to make the film over the course of 14 months. That commitment is reflected in the eight-hour runtime, which captures both the rhythm and feel of daily life and rural Japan’s continued environmental desecration by urbanization far more honestly than it could with a more conventional length.
The Works and Days opens in select theaters July 16.
New works by one of Bangladesh’s most prominent photojournalists, writers, and activists are on view at the Chicago art space through November 27.
Council often uses humor as a political tool to expose systems of power and inequality in a society in which even death carries a high price tag.
An exhibition at the San Francisco Opera House pairs the work of incarcerated artists with Beethoven’s story of unjust imprisonment.
Many works take disruption and repetition as their themes, and many artists resurface in different sections, creating multiple affinities.
Hear from Holly Jean Buck, Carolina Caycedo and David de Rozas, Simon Denny, Elizabeth Hoover, Renee Kemp-Rotan, Joseph Kunkel, and more at this free public event.
In Cooking with Paris, Hilton capitalizes on her portrayal of being a competent woman, while highlighting its anachronism through her absurd performance. Rosler manipulates the camera in the same way.
EFA Open Studios offers a portal into the creative habitats of over 65 artists working in Manhattan’s longest-running studio program, including Dannielle Tegeder, Wafaa Bilal, Cui Fei, and Anina Major.
A man says Blue Bayou took details of his life without his permission. Several women who appear in the documentary Sabaya say they did not consent to be filmed. How can filmmakers avoid these ethical pitfalls?
Ursula Biemann, Nicolas Bourriaud, and others said they will no longer participate in the event.
There is an official ban against the public mourning of Tiananmen Square victims in Hong Kong and mainland China.