Monday, July 30, 2007

Farewell Ingmar Bergman

Today the world is bereft of one of its finest poets. Ingmar Bergman, that sweet prince of cinema, now sleeps...

From Today's New York Times:

In other cases, films were suggested by essays, novels, pieces of music. In every case, he said, some outside event had turned the key on some deep-seated memory — each film was a projection of some past experience.

“I have maintained open channels with my childhood,” [Bergman] told Ms. Kakutani. “I think it may be that way with many artists. Sometimes in the night, when I am on the limit between sleeping and being awake, I can just go through a door into my childhood and everything is as it was — with lights, smells, sounds and people . . . I remember the silent street where my grandmother lived, the sudden aggressivity of the grown-up world, the terror of the unknown and the fear from the tension between my father and mother.” ....

“I want to be one of the artists of the cathedral that rises on the plain,” he said. “I want to occupy myself by carving out of stone the head of a dragon, an angel or a demon, or perhaps a saint; it doesn’t matter; I will find the same joy in any case. Whether I am a believer or an unbeliever, Christian or pagan, I work with all the world to build a cathedral because I am artist and artisan, and because I have learned to draw faces, limbs, and bodies out of stone. I will never worry about the judgment of posterity or of my contemporaries; my name is carved nowhere and will disappear with me. But a little part of myself will survive in the anonymous and triumphant totality. A dragon or a demon, or perhaps a saint, it doesn’t matter!”

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