Andrzej Wajda shooting Afterimage
by Dorota Hartwich
- The Polish maestro is currently hard at work on his new film in progress, centring on avant-garde artist Wladyslaw Strzeminski
Happily, Andrzej Wajda, who will turn 90 next March, has no intention of going into retirement, and he is currently shooting a new film, Afterimage [+see also:
film profile], which stars top Polish actor Boguslaw Linda (Blind Chance, Pan Tadeusz), who is flanked by Zofia Wichlacz and Boguslawa Zamachowska.
Afterimage, the screenplay for which was written by Andrzej Mularczyk, is devoted to one of the greatest Polish avant-garde artists: Wladyslaw Strzeminski. The film’s title, which refers to persistent images, those optical illusions that continue to appear under one’s eyelids after staring at a reflective object, is borrowed directly from the painter’s work and uses the title of his famous series of paintings from 1948–1949. But although Wajda had been thinking about making this cinematic portrait for the last 20 years, its purpose is not merely to give viewers new appreciation for Polish art from the first half of the 20th century, but also, and above all, to lay bare the human side of an artist. While his activity as a solo artist and his participation in groups that Strzeminski himself had set up in the 1920s and 1930s (together with his wife, Katarzyna Kobro, and painter Henryk Stazewski) played a fundamental role in the history of 20th-century Polish art, what is even more important in Wajda’s eyes is this man’s struggle and resistance in the face of the communist regime. Strzeminski was persecuted and indeed fell victim to the system, which wiped out his career, humiliated him and destroyed his entire life, until his death in 1952.
Produced by Akson Studio, Afterimages boasts a budget of €2.3 million, including almost €700,000 in support from the Polish Film Institute (the highest amount of aid granted at the PISF’s latest session). The film, whose cinematography is being entrusted to Pawel Edelman (The Pianist [+see also:
film profile], Katyn [+see also:
interview: Andrzej Wajda
interview: Michal Kwiecinski
film profile], Venus in Fur [+see also:
interview: Roman Polanski
film profile]), will be out in cinemas in 2016.
(Translated from French)