In conjunction with Bring On the Lumière, a multimedia dance-theatre-light installation presented at the Schwartz Center for the Performing Arts, and Lumière and Beyond at Cornell Cinema, the Museum will project shorts by the Lumière Brothers—the French founders of cinema—on the exterior of the main building from sunset to 11:00 p.m. The Cornell Cinema screenings will take place on Thursday, February 2. Bring On the Lumière is choreographed and directed by Catherine Galasso (Class of 2006) and will be presented on the main stage of the Schwartz Center on Friday, February 10 at 7:30 p.m.
Considered the French founding fathers of cinema, Auguste (1862–1954) and Louis (1864–1948) Lumière patented their cinematograph—a device that could record, develop, and project motion pictures—in February 1895. The first film ever shot with it was the brothers’ “Workers Leaving the Lumière Factory” on March 19, 1895. Another of their earliest films was “Arrival of a Train at a Station” (both represented in the recent Martin Scorsese film Hugo). French filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier described “Arrival of a Train” as showing that “the Lumière Brothers went far beyond being the inventors of cinema to becoming the first filmmakers, as evidenced in their very modern approach to filmic composition, such as in their use of diagonals and contrast.” For example, in an early film of a soccer match, the ball is always outside the frame, a trope used today by such video artists as Paul Pfeiffer and Douglas Gordon, demonstrating the Lumière Brothers’ enduring relevance to contemporary filmmaking.