The Camera: Je, La Camera: I (1977) at AFS Cinema with Babette Mangolte in person!

The Camera: Je, La Camera: I (1977) at AFS Cinema with Babette Mangolte in person!

Photo: “Mimi-Building,” film still from The Camera: Je, La Camera, I (Babette Mangolte, 1977)

Saturday, September 17


@AFS Cinema

6226 Middle Fiskville Road, Austin, TX 78752 (map)

Programmed by Jennifer Stob

$10 AFS General Admission                                                                                                       

$7 AFS WATCH AND MAKE MEMBERS                                                                        


Experimental Response Cinema and the Austin Film Society are proud to present  The Camera:Je, La Camera:I (1977) by Babette Mangolte.

Don’t miss the screening of Akerman’s News From Home on Friday, September 16 with Babette Mangolte (the film’s cinematographer) live in person!

What is photography? Who is its subject? These are the issues that experimental filmmaker and photographer Babette Mangolte probes in her elegant and meditative The Camera: Je, La Camera: I.

Mangolte has been a key figure at the heart of contemporary interdisciplinary art since the early seventies. As DP, she shot six films with experimental filmmaker Chantal Akerman and worked with numerous avant-garde or independent filmmakers like Yvonne Rainer, Jean Pierre Gorin, Marcel Hanoun, Richard Foreman, Sally Potter and Michael Snow.

Her work at the intersection of performance art and documentary has been just as significant: she has directed, shot or otherwise contributed to film and video productions with Marina Abramović, Trisha Brown, Steve Paxton, Robert Rauschenberg and others.

The Camera: Je, La Camera: I alternates between French and English, signaling the emotional relationship that the filmmaker/protagonist has with both languages.

The film gives its spectators a direct experience of the tension as well as the wanderings and timing of a photographic session. The power inherent in the taking of a picture is turned on its head at the end of the film in a short epilogue, when the performer on the screen becomes a photographic critic, scrutinizing the images made and passing judgment.

Witty and philosophical, The Camera: Je, La Camera: I features a brief cameo of Chantal Akerman as well as cameos of other performers and collaborators of Mangolte’s. It is a snapshot of New York’s creative universe in the 1970s that reflects back on its own creation.