Le temps passe (Die Zeit vergeht), 2017, Jean-Gabriel Périot
Nijuman no borei (200000 Phantoms), 2007, Jean-Gabriel Périot
Eût-elle été criminelle …, 2006, Jean-Gabriel Périot
Les barbares (Die Barbaren), 2010, Jean-Gabriel Périot
Eût-elle été criminelle …, 2006, Jean-Gabriel Périot
Le jour a vaincu la nuit (Der Tag hat die Nacht besiegt), 2013, Jean-Gabriel Périot

Jean-Gabriel Périot

October 22, 2020

French filmmaker Jean-Gabriel Périot (*1974) has drawn much attention in recent decades as one of the most extraordinary talents in found footage cinema. Une jeunesse allemande (A German Youth, 2015), his full-length, astonishing chronicle of the history of the RAF, composed solely of archival material, was already shown at the Film Museum. On October 22, we will present Périot's diverse and fascinating short film oeuvre.

An autodidact, Périot taught himself his cinematic craft during his internship at the Centre Pompidou Archives. The use of historical and contemporary footage is a major strand in his oeuvre in which he defiantly explores questions of representation, often in the form of rapid photomontages. In his opus, topical interventions on the image of workers (We Are Winning, Don't Forget) or political protest (in Les barbares, among others) come together with reflections on key historical events, as in his furious reflection on the topic of collaboration in the Second World War (Eût-elle été criminelle ...) or the film addressing the transformation of Hiroshima (Nijuman no borei).

In some of these works, Périot is close to the music video form, which he handles just as remarkably and with as much commitment (in Nous or Les temps passe) as he does political topics. In #67, he proves that he can also tackle subjects with comic brilliance: in this film, the (greenhouse) tomato becomes the epitome of evil, or at least of the sociocultural failure of European democracy. In addition, Périot also captivates as a reflected documentarist (e.g. Le jour a vaincu la nuit) and with (short) feature films such as Looking at the Dead, a faithful adaptation of Don DeLillo's short story Baader-Meinhof. To sum it up: an all-round talent. (C.H.)

In cooperation with the Vienna Shorts film festival