“Charged with the pleasure of discovery”
At the turn of the century Varda moved into digital filmmaking. The lightweight equipment offered new freedoms and, inspired by Jean-François Millet's painting ‘Les glaneuses’, she traversed France in search of modern day gleaners.
Gleaning is a long-standing form of 'rural welfare', whereby commoners were allowed to collect leftover crops from the grain and orchid harvests. In modern times, it continues in fields and urban centres; gleaners can be found diving into supermarket dumpsters and salvaging televisions, fridges, furniture or what the French term as 'ownerless things'.
Crisscrossing the French countryside and her hometown of Paris, Varda’s multi-award winning film captures gleaners at work. From jolly groups of oyster hunters to people existing on the very fringes of society, Varda’s curiosity and warmth offers an engaging audience with people that are all too often invisible in our society.
Selected for Official Competition at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival, The Gleaners & I brought Varda back into cinematic spotlight. Today it stands as an enormously joyful highlight within her documentary oeuvre.
Please note: this screening will take place at The Capitol while ACMI at Fed Square is closed for redevelopment.