“Daguerréotypes has aged splendidly, acquiring flavors that would've been inconceivable at the time it was made.”
People and place form the bedrock of Varda's filmmaking and both are beautifully exemplified in this early documentary that reveals the dreams and illusions that reside on Rue Daguerre; a humble street named after one of the pioneers of photography Louis-Jacques-Mandé Daguerre.
Varda’s observations of the baker, grocer, butcher, perfumer and laundress are unobtrusive but inquisitive, gleaning information about their histories and hopes. She said, “I sought to capture the people’s way of life. In this simplicity I touch on another aspect of feminism: filming in a simple way the simplicity of daily life.”
Varda’s own 'immobility' (like that of her shopkeeper's) is key to the larger filmic and political structure of the film. Tethered to home with a new baby and having promised her neighbours she would only use her own electricity supply, Varda created an ‘electrical umbilical cord’ confining herself to film within 90 meters from her own doorstep.
This simple premise begs deeper thought to the social politics of labour and gender. A complex puzzle presented as an enchanting vision of the beauty and universality of daily life.
Please note: this screening will take place at The Capitol while ACMI at Fed Square is closed for redevelopment.