Finite Rants, 2020
Fujiwara created several images for "Finite Rants”, an online project curated by Luigi Alberto Cippini and Niccolò Gravina, a series of 8 visual essays commissioned by Fondazione Prada to filmmakers, artists, intellectuals and scholars.
The first authors include German director and writer Alexander Kluge, Japanese photographer Satoshi Fujiwara, French director Bertrand Bonello, and Swiss economist Christian Marazzi.
As stated by avant-garde director Hans Richter in 1940, the film or video essay is a form of expression capable of creating “images for mental notions” and of portraying concepts. Starting from Richter’s ideas, some later theorists identify specific traits in the video essay, such as creative freedom, complexity, reflexivity, the crossing of film genres and the transgression of linguistic conventions. “Finite Rants” aims to test the versatility of the visual essay in expressing thought images and demonstrate its relevance in contemporary visual production.
The aesthetic and theoretical roots of “Finite Rants” can be traced back to the experimental work La Jetée (1962) by French author Chris Marker. Defined by its creator as “photo-roman”, La Jetée is described by its voice-over as “the story of a man obsessed with an image of his childhood”. Set in a fictional Paris almost destroyed by a future nuclear holocaust, this dystopian, intimate and theoretical film expresses its distance from later narrative experimentations. The film thus integrates science fiction and obscure psychological introspection into a hybrid form, eliminating every concept of space and time, and freeing itself from a form generally considered definite. The authors of “Finite Rants” are therefore invited to confront themselves with a radical model of cinematic experimentation such as La Jetée, a fragmentary and dispersive story, consisting of a single short film sequence and a succession of static frames, which questions the very idea of cinema, understood as a set of moving images.
Following a process of creative collaboration between the authors and Fondazione Prada, the visual contributions featured in “Finite Rants” analyze social, political and cultural issues that have emerged in our present time and are normally addressed by the media with a documentary approach. Through the creation, editing and post-production of raw, heterogeneous and diverse images and visual materials, the authors are able to express personal visions and poetics that involve the viewer in an active and reflective role.