Exhibtion, films, talks & events
25 May — 3 September 2017
The son of Italian immigrants, Martin Scorsese (1942) grew up in Little Italy in New York. His films paint a vibrant portrait of this close-knit community in which family, religion and trust are central. The Italian mafia plays a prominent role in this world, and guilt and punishment are therefore key themes in the work of Scorsese.
In the summer of 2017, Eye staged an exhibition devoted to one of the most important American film directors of the past half-century: Martin Scorsese. Over the years, the director of such classics as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and The Wolf of Wall Street has elaborated a uniquely personal style of filmmaking.
Relationships between his characters – with soulmates Robert De Niro and Leonardo DiCaprio often in the leading roles – are characterized by mistrust, fear and betrayal. Violence is a central element, as is the quest for spirituality.
This first exhibition devoted entirely to Scorsese showed how his powerful and passionate stories have influenced modern American cinema. A number of key film fragments were projected on large screens in the exhibition, accompanied by over 400 objects and documents taken from the personal collections of Martin Scorsese and Robert De Niro.
“Some of the objects you’re going to see were literally taken off walls and shelves in my home and my office, and editing room. A lot of these things are very, very personal. Things from my mother and father’s apartment. Pictures on the walls. And I hope that these objects and memorabilia, all of this, give you some sense of this lifelong passion I’ve had for the cinema and what it means to me.”
Martin Scorsese about the exhibition
A video message from Martin Scorsese:
With eight Academy Award nominations for Best Director, the American film director of Sicilian descent is the most-nominated filmmaker in Oscar history. Among the accolades he has received are a Golden Palm for Taxi Driver, three BAFTA Awards for Goodfellas, and Golden Globes for both Gangs of New York and The Departed.
Scorsese's rich body of work stretches from his experimental early films, to documentaries (Il mio viaggio in Italia) and music films (Shine a Light, The Last Waltz), to the psychological thrillers that made him famous. Acclaimed films include Mean Streets (1973), Taxi Driver (1976), Raging Bull (1980), The Last Temptation of Christ (1988), Goodfellas (1990), Hugo (2011) and The Wolf of Wall Street (2013).
A remarkable aspect of Scorsese's films is the clear influence of European auteur cinema and of the classical Hollywood repertoire. Scorsese has always studied in depth the history of cinema, and he has championed the preservation of international film heritage through his Film Foundation.
About the exhibition
Martin Scorsese – The Exhibition highlighted Scorsese's sources of inspiration and presented a clear picture of the close relationship between his life and work. The exhibition included fragments from his important films on large screens, accompanied by over 400 objects and documents, including photographs, scenarios and storyboards from the personal archives of Scorsese himself and Robert De Niro that have never previously been exhibited. Also on display were set designs by Dante Ferretti, costume designs by Sandy Powell, and original set photos by Brigitte Lacombe. Large screens showed scenes from over thirty films by Scorsese.
In addition, the exhibition included scenes from documentaries that Scorsese made about the history of film, and audio fragments in which Scorsese and his long-time editor Thelma Schoonmaker comment on what is on display. A separate space devoted ample attention to music, which has always played a pivotal role in the work of Scorsese. He has collaborated intensively with prominent film composers such as Bernard Herrmann and Philip Glass, and also made legendary documentaries about the Rolling Stones and Bob Dylan.
The travelling exhibition is split into several categories and themes that recur in the work of Scorsese: Family, Brothers, Men and Women, Lonely Heroes, New York, Cinema, Cinematography, Editing, and Music.
Take a virtual tour through the exhibition:
Films, talks & more
During the summer, Eye screened his most important films and documentaries, including restored versions of such classics as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull and Goodfellas. Renowned Dutch actors, filmmakers and artists introduced their favourite Scorsese films.
Martin Scorsese curated a programme of his favourite films from the collections of Eye and his own Film Foundation. In consultation with Scorsese, Eye also screened classics from non-Western countries that have been restored by his Film Foundation.
The exhibition is curated by Kristina Jaspers, Nils Warnecke, in cooperation with Jaap Guldemond and Marente Bloemheuvel.
Director of exhibitions / Curator
Claartje Opdam, Sanne Baar
Joseph Plateau, Amsterdam
Rembrandt Boswijk, Indyvideo, Utrecht; Bo Jansen
Syb Sybesma, Landstra & De Vries, Amsterdam
Maarten Warmerdam, Theatermachine, Amsterdam
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