Spanish cinema flourished during General Francisco Franco’s regime (1939–75) despite the dictatorship. Provoked by the system they lived under, Spanish directors told stories about the people’s hopes and troubles by using humor and symbols that reached their audiences and sidestepped the censors. This unique exhibition explores an era that fought for freedom through cinema. Until now, this fertile filmmaking period has gone unacknowledged; the generations following Franco’s death in 1975 were eager to build a new democracy and leave the dictatorship behind. More than three decades later, these 20 features reveal an enthralling, daring, and formally innovative era of Spanish cinema. All films are from Spain and in Spanish, with English subtitles, except where noted.
Coinciding with the exhibition, “Expression in Times of Repression,” a panel discussion with director Basilio Martin Patino and Fernando Lara (Director of ICAA and Chema de la Pena and director of Salamanca a ninguna parte [From Salamanca to Nowhere, 2002]), and moderated by Richard Pena, Program Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, takes place at the Juan Carlos I of Spain Center, New York University, on October 20. For more information visit pragda.com. Other events include a book-release reception for Breaking the Code: Daring Films that Mocked the Repression in Spain at the Instituto Cervantes at Amster Yard on October 18. Spain (Un)Censored travels to the BFI Southbank, London, in January 2008.
Organized by Sally Berger, Assistant Curator, Department of Film, The Museum of Modern Art, and Marta Sánchez, independent curator, in collaboration with the Instituto de la Cinematografía y de las Artes Audiovisuales (ICAA) of the Spanish Ministry of Culture.
Support for the exhibition comes from Instituto Cervantes, New York; the Consulate General of Spain, New York; Embassy of Spain, Washington, DC; and Dirección General de Relaciones Culturales y Científicas, Filmoteca, AECI, of the Spanish Ministry of Exterior Affairs and Cooperation. Panel sponsored by The Regional Government of Castile and León. Special thanks to Roberto Varela, Consul for Cultural Affairs, Spanish Consulate General, NY; and Stacey Picullell, Intern, Department of Film, The Museum of Modern Art.