Jean-Luc Godard Puissance de la parole 1988

  • Not on view

Jean–Luc Godard, one of cinema's most influential artists, has made significant contributions to the field of video. He began making films in the mid–1950s, and since 1974 he has been working with video technologies, employing techniques such as deconstruction, reassemblage, and collage to create a fresh aesthetic that is both resonant and intriguing. Godard overlaps music, sounds, and dialogue and establishes visual rhythms through juxtaposing slow takes and rapid cuts to create what he calls son image, that is, sound and image. In Puissance de la parole, explosive sequences from nature abut those consisting of passionate discussions by two couples. One pair argues in dialogue spoken by the lovers in the novel The Postman Always Rings Twice, by James Cain; the other couple quotes a tale by Edgar Allan Poe. Regardless of his chosen medium, Godard has always expressed a wide range of thematic interests—art, politics, history, television, communication, anxiety, sex, desire, music, and the history of the movies.

Publication excerpt from In Still Moving: The Film and Media Collections of the Museum of Modern Art by Steven Higgins, New York: The Museum of Modern Art, 2006, p. 306.
Video (color, sound)
25 min.
Acquired through the generosity of France Telecom
Object number
Media and Performance

If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

All requests to license audio or video footage produced by MoMA should be addressed to Scala Archives at Motion picture film stills or motion picture footage from films in MoMA’s Film Collection cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For licensing motion picture film footage it is advised to apply directly to the copyright holders. For access to motion picture film stills please contact the Film Study Center. More information is also available about the film collection and the Circulating Film and Video Library.

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication or, please email If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to


This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to