Pier Paolo Pasolini
Pier Paolo Pasolini was an Italian film director, poet and intellectual. Pasolini distinguished himself as an actor, philosopher, playwright and his murder prompted an outcry in some circles of Italy, with its circumstances continuing to be a matter of heated debate. Pasolini was born in Bologna, traditionally one of the most leftist politically of Italian cities and he was the son of Carlo Alberto Pasolini, a lieutenant of the Italian army, and Susanna Colussi, an elementary school teacher. His parents married in 1921, Pasolini was born in 1922 and his family moved to Conegliano in 1923 and, two years later, to Belluno, where another son, was born. In 1926, Pasolinis father was arrested for gambling debts and his mother moved with the children to her familys house in Casarsa della Delizia, in the Friuli region. That same year, his father Carlo Alberto, first detained, at any rate, Carlo Alberto was persuaded of the virtues of fascism. Pasolini began writing poems at the age of seven, inspired by the beauty of Casarsa.
One of his influences was the work of Arthur Rimbaud. In 1931, his father was transferred to Idria in the Julian March, in 1933 they moved again to Cremona in Lombardy, and to Scandiano and Reggio Emilia. Pasolini found it difficult to adapt to all moves, though in the meantime he enlarged his poetry and literature readings. In the Reggio Emilia high school, he met his first true friend, the two met again in Bologna, where Pasolini spent seven years while completing high school, here he cultivated new passions, including football. With other friends, including Ermes Parini, Franco Farolfi, Elio Meli, in 1939 Pasolini graduated and entered the Literature College of the University of Bologna, discovering new themes such as philology and aesthetics of figurative arts. He frequented the cinema club. Pasolini always showed his friends a virile and strong exterior, totally hiding his interior travail and he took part in the Fascist governments culture and sports competitions. In his poems of this period, Pasolini started to include fragments in Friulan, I learnt it as a sort of mystic act of love, a kind of félibrisme, like the Provençal poets.
After the summer in Casarsa, in 1941 Pasolini published at his own expense a collection of poems in Friulan, the work was noted and appreciated by intellectuals and critics such as Gianfranco Contini, Alfonso Gatto and Antonio Russi. His pictures had been well received, Pasolini was chief editor of the Il Setaccio magazine, but was fired after conflicts with the director, who was aligned with the Fascist regime. A trip to Germany helped him to perceive the status of Italian culture in that era
Ernesto Sabato was an Argentine writer and physicist. According to the BBC he won some of the most prestigious prizes in Hispanic literature, upon his death El País dubbed him the last classic writer in Argentine literature. Sabato was distinguished by his bald pate and brush moustache and wore tinted spectacles and he was born in Rojas, a small town in Buenos Aires Province. Sabato began his studies at the Colegio Nacional de La Plata and he studied physics at the Universidad Nacional de La Plata, where he earned a PhD. He attended the Sorbonne in Paris and worked at the Curie Institute, after World War II, he lost interest in science and started writing. Sabatos oeuvre includes three novels, El Túnel, Sobre héroes y tumbas and Abaddón el exterminador, the first of these received critical acclaim upon its publication from, among others, fellow writers Albert Camus and Thomas Mann. The second is regarded as his masterpiece, though he nearly burnt it like many of his other works, Sabatos essays cover topics as diverse as metaphysics and tango.
His writings led him to many international prizes, including the Legion of Honour, the Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger. On the request of President Raúl Alfonsín he presided over the CONADEP commission that investigated the fate of those who suffered forced disappearance during the Dirty War of the 1970s, the result of these findings was published in 1984 bearing the title Nunca Más. Ernesto Sabato was born on June 24,1911, in Rojas, Buenos Aires Province, son of Francesco Sabato and Giovanna Maria Ferrari and his father was from Fuscaldo, and his mother was an Arbëreshë from San Martino di Finita. He was the tenth of a total of eleven children, being born after his ninth brothers death, he carried on his name Ernesto. In 1924 he finished school in Rojas and settled in the city of La Plata for his secondary education at the Colegio Nacional de La Plata. There he met professor Pedro Henríquez Ureña, an inspiration for his writing career. In 1929 he started college, attending the School of Physics and Mathematics at the Universidad Nacional de La Plata, in 1933 he was elected Secretario General of the Federación Juvenil Comunista.
While attending a lecture about Marxism he met Matilde Kusminsky Richter, aged 17, in 1934 he started to doubt communism and Joseph Stalins regime. The Communist Party of Argentina, which had noted this, sent him to the International Lenin School for two years, according to Sabato, it was a place where either you recovered or ended up in a gulag or psychiatric hospital. Before arriving at Moscow, he traveled to Brussels as a delegate from the Communist Party of Argentina at the Congress against Fascism, once there, fearing not coming back from Moscow, he left the congress to escape to Paris. It was there where he wrote his first novel, La Fuente Muda, once back in Buenos Aires, in 1936, he married Matilde Kusminsky Richter
Ana Lila Downs Sánchez, best known as Lila Downs is an American–Mexican singer-songwriter and actress. She performs her own compositions and the works of others in multiple genres, as well as tapping into Mexican traditional and she incorporates indigenous Mexican influences and has recorded songs in many indigenous languages such as Mixtec, Mayan and Purépecha. Born and raised in Oaxaca, she studied at the Institute of Arts by Oaxaca and briefly attended University of Minnesota. She soon began performing in the music scene of Oaxaca City. Her first album, was released in 1994, in 1999, Downs came to prominence with her debut studio album, La Sandunga, which was a critical and commercial success. She achieved international success in 2001 with the album Border which emerged in the scene of Mexico. Lilas seventh album, Pecados y Milagros, topped charts in most major markets. Her eighth album, Balas y Chocolate, was released in 2015 and she is currently at work on her ninth album, as of yet untitled and scheduled for release in the spring of 2017.
Downs began performing in school, demonstrating her ability with traditional music and American influences. Downs, a native Spanish speaker, speaks fluent Mixtec, Downs through her activism has gone through great lengths to preserve the Mixtec language as well as many other Indigenous Mexican languages. Her achievements include one Grammy Awards and two Latin Grammy Awards, besides her musical career, she involves herself with humanitarian causes and political activism, especially dealing with issues of Latin Americas indigenous. Lila Downs was born on September 19,1968 in Tlaxiaco and she is the daughter of Anita Sanchez, a Mixtec cabaret singer and Allen Downs, a British-American professor of art and cinematographer from Minnesota. From an early age Lila showed interest in music, at the age of eight she began singing rancheras and other traditional Mexican songs. She began her career singing with mariachis. At fourteen she moved to the United States with her parents and she studied voice in Los Angeles and learned English, which her father helped her to perfect.
When she was 16, her father died, and she decided to return to her native Tlaxiaco with her mother, One day while she was working in a store in the Mixtec mountains a man came in to ask her to translate his sons death certificate. She read that he had drowned trying to cross the border into the United States and this deeply affected her and has continued to influence her work. She talked about this in an NPR interview about her 2001 release entitled Border, although today Downs is proud of her origins there was a time when she felt shame regarding her Native American roots
Pierre Louis Joseph Boulez CBE was a French composer, conductor and organiser of institutions. He was one of the dominant figures of the classical music world. Born in Montbrison in the Loire district of France, the son of an engineer, Boulez studied at the Paris Conservatoire with Olivier Messiaen and he began his professional career in the late 1940s as Music Director of the Renaud-Barrault theatre company in Paris. As a young composer in the 1950s he quickly became a figure in avant-garde music, playing an important role in the development of integral serialism. From the 1970s onwards he pioneered the transformation of instrumental music in real time. In parallel with his activities as a composer Boulez became one of the most prominent conductors of his generation and he made frequent guest appearances with many of the worlds other great orchestras, including the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra and the London Symphony Orchestra. His recorded legacy is extensive and he received 26 Grammy Awards, Pierre Boulez died at his home in Baden-Baden on 5 January 2016, aged 90.
Pierre Boulez was born on 26 March 1925, in Montbrison and he was the third of four children, an older sister and younger brother, Roger were preceded by a first child, called Pierre, who died in infancy. By the age of fifteen he was sceptical about religion, what struck me most was that it was so mechanical, as a child he took piano lessons, played chamber music with local amateurs and sang in the school choir. After completing the first part of his baccalaureate a year early he spent the year of 1940–41 at the Pensionnat St. Louis. The following year he took courses in advanced mathematics at the University of Lyon which his father hoped would prepare him for a career in engineering and he was in Lyon when the Vichy government fell and the Germans took over. It was not a time, and nothing to eat. It was in Lyon that he first heard an orchestra, saw his first operas and met the well-known soprano Ninon Vallin, impressed by his ability, she persuaded Léon to allow his son to apply to the Conservatoire in Lyon, but the selection board rejected him.
Boulez was determined to pursue a career in music, the following year, with his sisters support in the face of opposition from his father, he studied the piano and harmony privately with Lionel de Pachmann. Our parents were strong, but finally we were stronger than they, in fact, when he moved to Paris in the autumn of 1943, Léon accompanied him, helped him to find a room and subsidised him until he could earn a living. In late 1943 he entered the preparatory class of Georges Dandelot at the Paris Conservatoire. There he was introduced to Andrée Vaurabourg, wife of the composer Arthur Honegger and he greatly enjoyed working with her and she remembered him as an exceptional student, using his exercises as models in advanced counterpoint until the end of her teaching career. He studied the piano privately in the hope of entering Jean Doyens class, but he was unsuccessful
Manoel de Oliveira
Manoel Cândido Pinto de Oliveira GCSE, GCIH was a Portuguese film director and screenwriter born in Cedofeita, Porto. He first began making films in 1927, when he and some attempted to make a film about World War I. In 1931 he completed his first film Douro, Faina Fluvial, among the numerous factors that prevented Oliveira from making more films during this time period were the political situation in Portugal, family obligations and money. He continued making films of growing ambition throughout the 1970s and 1980s, gaining critical acclaim, Beginning in the late 1980s he was one of the most prolific working film directors and made an average of one film per year past the age of 100. In March 2008 he was reported to be the oldest active film director in the world, and was possibly the second oldest film director ever after George Abbott and he was the only filmmaker whose active career spanned from the silent era to the digital age. Oliveira was born on 11 December 1908 in Porto, Portugal, to Francisco José de Oliveira and his family were wealthy industrialists and agricultural landowners.
His father owned a factory, produced the first electric light bulbs in Portugal. Oliveira was educated at the Colegio Universal in Porto before attending a Jesuit boarding school in Galicia, as a teenager his goal was to become an actor. At 17, he joined his brothers as an executive in his fathers factories, in a 1981 Sight and Sound article, John Gillett describes Oliveira as having spent most of his life in business. Making films only when circumstances allowed, from an early age, Oliveira was interested in the poverty of the lower classes, the arts and especially films. The Portuguese film industry was highly censored and restricted under the fascist Salazar regime that lasted from the early 1930s until the mid-1970s. His films, such as The Cannibals and Belle Toujours and he stated Im closer to Buñuel. Hes a reverse Catholic and I was raised a Catholic and its a religion that permits sin, and Buñuel at the very deepest is one of the most moralistic directors but he does everything to the contrary.
I never say that Im Catholic because to be Catholic is very difficult, I prefer to be thought of as a great sinner. Oliveiras first attempt at filmmaking was in 1927 when he and his friends worked on a film about the Portuguese experience in World War I and he enrolled in Italian film-maker Rino Lupos acting school at age 20 and appeared as an extra in Lupos film Fátima Milagrosa. Years in 1933 he had the distinction of having acted in the second Portuguese sound film, eventually Oliveira turned his attention back to filmmaking when he saw Walther Ruttmanns documentary Berlin, Symphony of a City. Ruttmans film is the most famous of a small, short lived silent documentary film genre, other examples include Alberto Cavalcantis Rien que les heures and Dziga Vertovs Man with a Movie Camera. Oliveira said that Ruttmans film was his most useful lesson in film technique, the discovery of Ruttmans film prompted Oliveira to direct his own first film in 1931, a documentary short titled Douro, Faina Fluvial
Sylvia Plachy is a Hungarian/American photographer. Plachys work has featured in many New York city magazines and newspapers. Plachy was born in Budapest and her Hungarian Jewish mother was in hiding in fear of Nazi persecution during World War II. Her father was a Hungarian Roman Catholic of aristocratic descent and she was raised in his faith, Plachys family moved to New York City in 1958, after the Hungarian revolution and two years after they had crossed into Austria for safety, hidden in a horse-drawn cart. She started photographing in 1964 with an emphasis of recording the character of the city along with its diverse occupants. Plachy studied photography at the Pratt Institute in New York City, there she met the photographer André Kertész, who became her lifelong friend. Plachys photo essays and portraits have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Village Voice, The New Yorker, Artforum and she started working at The Village Voice in 1974. Plachys first book, Sylvia Plachys Unguided Tour, won the Infinity Award from the International Center of Photography for best publication in 1991.
Her book Self Portrait with Cows Going Home, a history of Central Europe with photographs and text. Her other books are Red Light, Inside the Sex Industry with James Ridgeway, Signs & Relics, Out of the Corner of My Eye and Goings On About Town, Photographs for The New Yorker. Plachy has been honored with a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Lucie Award, and she has taught and lectured widely. Plachy lives in New York City with her husband, Elliot Brody, Goings On About Town, Photographs for the New Yorker. Out of the Corner of My Eye = De reojo, Self Portrait With Cows Going Home. Red Light, Inside the Sex Industry, Sylvia Plachys website Audio interview with Plachy and photographs by her photos from Style series New York Times article