Valladolid International Film Festival SEMINCI 2022
ARCA International Films on Arts Festival 2023
With Theo Jansen, Leandro Erlich, Antonio López García.
Susumu Shingu, Liliana Porter, Denis Montfleur, Antonio Seguí,
Ana Tiscornia, Luis Felipe Noé, Eduardo Stupia, Pat Andrea, Mario Gurfein, Laurent Le Bon, Carlos Abboud.
Music By Paula Moore
Shoot in Uruguay, France, Spain and Argentina.
1h05, 4K, Color, 16/9, 7+1 DCP
About An Imaginary Land by Juan Pablo Domenech
What is a real paradise? A place? Our loved ones?
Our imagination? A work of art?
In An Imaginary Land, paradise seems to combine all the above in an ongoing artistic work in progress that might never end: the unfolding material creation of a heaven of art and nature, blended together in the most spectacular landscape.
This unique kingdom spreads out on small hills near the sea, in Cerro Timbó, Uruguay. And the vision of a promised land, according to Carlos Abboud, an art collector, urged the topmost prestigious painters, sculptors and artists from all over the world to fertilize that territory with astonishing, awe-inspiring and site-specific installations, in what is now called the Cerro Timbó Project.
But An Imaginary Land, directed by Juan Solanas, whose previous films have premiered at the Official Selection of the Cannes Film Festival, is also an exciting film journey in itself, and a distinctive work of art of its own. And this time, he also generates a genuine “mise en abîme” out of the graceful mirroring of art creations, and striking visual inventions.
This film is a gorgeous sensory vessel that encourages us into an adventure about art, the way it’s conceived in a specific territory, the emotional anatomy behind each creation, and the impact of art on our lives.
From Susumu Shingu, the kinetic sculptor from Japan, whose nature-inspired works are constructed out of highly engineered materials, to Theo Jansen, the Dutch artist whose large mechanisms are able to move on their own, and the Argentine conceptual artist Leandro Erlich, we explore the way in which that peculiar Eden is constantly unfolding and changing, revealing at each step the infinite promises of merging art, nature, and community.
The language that the artists use in the film is, for once, wonderfully genuine in its simplicity, far remove from academic theories or pretentious statements, which makes its impact even greater. So that paradise, in constant progress, imagined by artists like Denis Montfleur, Antonio Lopez García, Antonio Seguí and many more, seems to reveal itself as passing clouds in the sky do: as soon as we think we discover the totality of a combination of shapes and far away trees, sculptures and small hills… new variations appear and, suddenly, a few moments later, a completely different vision emerges.
Perhaps the creation of this Imaginary Land will never end, and every step of its creation, both on the land and on the screen, holds for us an almost infinite amount of small miracles to unravel.