Eric Baudelaire - The Anabasis & The Ugly One
November 15, 2013 - January 25, 2014
Galerie Greta Meert is pleased to present The Ugly One, a feature film by Eric Baudelaire, the second
chapter of the artist’s collaboration with Masao Adachi, pioneering filmmaker of the Japanese New Wave
and former member of the Japanese Red Arrmy. For the first time since its premiere at the Locarno Film
Festival, the film is presented as an installation in the first floor gallery space. On the second floor, the
inaugural chapter of Baudelaire and Adachi’s collaboration is projected: The Anabasis of May and Fusako
Shigenobu, Masao Adachi, and 27 Years Without Images, a 66 minute movie, accompanied by a series of
documents and works on paper, unfolding a complex entanglement between cinema and terrorism. At the
time of its first screening at FID Marseille, Jean-Pierre Rehm wrote the following words about the film:
“Who are May and Fusako Shigenobu? Fusako — leader of an extremist left-wing faction, the Japanese
Red Army, involved in a number of terrorist operations — has been in hiding in Beirut for almost 30 years.
May, her daughter, born in Lebanon, only discovered Japan at the age of twenty-seven, after her motherʼs
arrest in 2000. And Masao Adachi? A screenwriter and radical activist filmmaker, committed to armed
struggle and the Palestinian cause, was also underground in Lebanon for several decades before being
sent back to his native country. In his years as a film director, he had been one of the instigators of a
ʻtheory of landscapeʼ — fukeiron: through filming landscapes, Adachi sought to reveal the structures of
oppression that underpin and perpetuate the political system. Anabasis? The name given, since Xenophon,
to wandering, circuitous homeward journeys.
It is this complicated, dark, and always suspenseful story that Eric Baudelaire — an artist renowned for
using photography as a means of questioning the staging of reality — chose to bring forth using the
documentary format. Filmed on Super 8 mm, and in the manner of fukeiron, contemporary panoramas of
Tokyo and Beirut are blended in with archival footage, TV clips and film excerpts as backdrop for May and
Adachiʼs voices and memories. They speak of everyday life, of being a little girl in hiding, of exile, politics
and cinema, and their fascinating overlap. All of which adds up not so much to an enquiry as a fragmented
Eric Baudelaire is a French visual artist and filmmaker born in Salt Lake City in 1973. He has recently
participated in La Triennale at the Palais de Tokyo, Paris (cur. Okwui Enwezor), Documentary Forum / A
Blind Spot at the HKW in Berlin (cur. Catherine David), and the Taipei Biennale (cur. Anselm Franke). His
work is included in the collections of the Centre Pompidou in Paris, the MACBA in Barcelona, the Whitney
Museum in New York and the Kadist Art Foundation. This is his second solo exhibition at the gallery.
The Ugly One was produced with the support of the Audi talents awards, la Fondation Nationale des Arts Graphiques et Plastiques, Le Centre
National du Cinema / DICRéAM, Kadist Art Foundation, Beirut Art Center and L’Office du Tourisme du Liban in Paris. L’Anabase de May et
Fusako Shigenobu, Masao Adachi, et 27 années sans Images was produced with the support of the Centre national des arts plastiques.