A Sense of Where You Are: Films from the Collection

Sep 9–30, 2007


Fargo. 1996. USA. Directed by Joel Coen

Borrowing the title of John McPhee’s book A Sense of Where You Are (1965), this exhibition focuses on the cinematic prominence of deliberate geographic references, and on the narrative implications of scenes located in settings as diverse as a modern metropolis, an arid mountain region, the mythological West, a romantic Old World city, and an imaginary environment. The discipline of geography concentrates on spatial analysis, area studies, earth science, and the confluence of man and land (also known as cultural geography). This geographic tradition strives to understand the interrelationships between humans and their disparate environments, emphasizing the influences of ritual, tradition, and ecological impact on daily life. Artists working in a variety of mediums—in this case, film—interpret cultural geography and portray place/​​environment/​geography as a dynamic organism that complements and/or confounds human characters and serves as a powerful narrative catalyst. All films are drawn from the Museum’s collection.

Organized by Anne Morra, Assistant Curator, Department of Film.


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