Filmmaker and theorist Harun Farocki in 2007. Photo copyright Hertha Hurnaus, 2007.
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"There is this beautiful conversation between [Marguerite] Duras and [Jean-Luc] Godard," Harun Farocki once recalled.The anecdote fell in the midst of the German filmmaker and theorist's 2009 interview with journalists Lina Maria Stahl and Alexander Waszynski. He was discussing how the material a filmmaker works with – be it film or video formats – is less important than what the filmmaker brings to it. Farocki passed away Wednesday at the age of 70, his work unfinished.In a salute to his colleague Thursday, Kodwo Eshun, co-founder of London-based artists' group Otolith Group, wrote: "Farocki directed more than 120 films and installations that analyzed the powers of the image with an originality, a prescience and a gravitas that renewed itself, year after year, project after project. Farocki served as editor of Munich-based film journal "Filmkritik" from 1974 to 1984 .One influential work, "How to Live in the Federal Republic of Germany" (1990), is composed of scenes from dozens of instructional workshops and training exercises, on topics ranging from driving to striptease.Farocki was a fixture at the Berlin International Film Festival, which staged retrospectives, and occasionally premieres, of his works.
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