Virtual Screening Room: Two by Sarah Maldoror
Thu 4/22 • 4PM - 6PM PDT
On April 13 of last year, 90-year-old filmmaker, theater artist and mother Sarah Maldoror passed away due to complications from the coronavirus. Born Sarah Durados in France to parents of West Indian and French descent, the multidimensional maker was initially drawn to the Parisian theater scene where, in 1956, she co-founded France’s first Black theater troupe in collaboration with other artists of the African diaspora. Later she pivoted her creative focus to cinema, first studying filmmaking under Soviet director Mark Donskoy in 1961 before working as assistant director to Gillo Pontecorvo on The Battle of Algiers (1966), a milestone of revolutionary cinema. Claiming that Black artists “are the only ones who should tell our history,” Maldoror forged her own visual transmissions of African culture by directing over two dozen films, including documentaries, fiction shorts, and feature-length narrative and television films.
The Archive is honored to again partner with the Black Feminism Initiative at UCLA to present two of Sarah Maldoror’s markedly distinct works: her first short, Monangambé (1969), and her satiric, delightful French television film, Dessert for Constance (1981). Presented in dialogue with each other, the two works construct a nuanced portrait of Maldoror’s unique formal, social and political concerns.
Post-screening conversation with Maldoror’s daughter, producer and distributor Annouchka de Andrade; UCLA Cinema & Media Studies Ph.D. candidate Zama Dube; and UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television Associate Professor Ellen C. Scott.
Co-sponsored by the UCLA Center for Study of Women and the Black Feminism Initiative.