Serge Bard – Fun and games for everyone

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1968 was a very good year for Serge Bard alias Abdullah Siradj. At just 21, this Enfant Terrible of the Zanzibar group was lucky enough to be financed by the “art patroness” Sylvina Boissonnas. He made three films in 35mm, very experimental in nature. The first film was called “Destroy Yourselves.” Shot in March 1968, it made headlines in May 1968 in the columns of Maoist filmgoers for its radical Warholian side (long still shots of some superstars – Caroline de Bendern, Alain Jouffroy, Thierry Garrel) and visionary in its anticipation, already in March, of the strikes and demonstrations of May 68. Noblesse oblige, it was one of the Zanzibar group’s first revolutionary films.

“Fun and Games for Everyone,” Serge Bard’s second film shot in 1968, was also filmed in 35mm with Henri Alekan in control of the lights and the camera. Bard, in this second film, again leaves the field open to an incessant coming and going of Parisians attending the opening of the minimalist painter Olivier Mosset and whose exhibition consisted of 10 paintings, all alike: white with black circles painted in their center. It’s the revolution criticizing art and painting… and Serge criticizing cinema! Alekan asked LTC film labs to flash the negative before processing it, giving the film a semi-negative look.

Like Warhol’s screen tests, Bard films people passing back and forth in front of the camera and paintings. Shot with a 50mm lens, we recognize the whole fashionable intelligentsia of the period: Barbet Schroeder, Amanda Lear, Jean Mascolo, Pascal Aubier and the imposing Salvador Dali who exclaims in front of one of the paintings: “It’s WERmeer!”

To further confuse the soundtrack, Serge asked Barney Wilen to compose haunting psychedelic music, very present during this 53-minute film essay. – Jackie Raynal

“Fun and Games (for Everyone): a pitch black and milky white film shot during one of Olivier Mosset’s exhibition openings. A psychedelic game of improvisation joins the Zanzibar group with Salvador Dalí, Barbet Schroeder and Jean Mascolo… the solarized image reminiscent of thick strokes of a paintbrush.” – PHILIPPE AZOURY

“Bard, in this second film, again leaves the field open to an incessant coming and going of Parisians attending the opening of the minimalist painter Olivier Mosset and whose exhibition consisted of 10 paintings, all alike: white with black circles painted in their center. It’s the revolution criticizing art and painting… and Serge criticizing cinema!” – JACKIE RAYNAL

“(On Fun and Games) Light can become volumeless graphic expression and dehumanize the actors until their faces are «absorbed» erasing all detail and creating an attractive environment.” – HENRI ALEKAN

“I had nothing to do with the film, it just was filmed at my exhibition.” – OLIVIER MOSSET


«Fun and Games (for Everyone), film d’un noir d’encre et d’un blanc lactal enregistré live durant le vernissage d’une exposition d’Olivier Mosset. Sous une improvisation psychédélique, se croisent, dans une image solarisée, épaisse comme un trait de pinceau, les Zanzibar, Salvador Dalí, Barbet Schroeder, Jean Mascolo…» – PHILIPPE AZOURY

«Bard, dans ce 2ème film, laisse à nouveau le champ libre à un va-et-vient incessant de parisiens qui assistent au vernissage du peintre minimaliste Olivier Mosset et dont l’expo consiste en 10 toiles, toutes similiaires, blanches avec des cercles noirs peints en leur centre. C’est la révolution qui critique l’art et la peinture… Et Serge qui critique le Cinéma!» – JACKIE RAYNAL

«(A propos de Fun and Games) La lumière peut devenir expression graphique sans modelé et dépersonnaliser les comédiens au point de leur «manger» le visage en sup-
primant tout détail et créer un environnement attractif.» – HENRI ALEKAN

«Je n’avais rien à voir avec le film, il était juste tourné pendant mon exposition.» – OLIVIER MOSSET

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