Pedro Almodóvar is one of contemporary European cinema’s great directors. His brash, bold and often beautiful explorations of post-Franco Spanish identity have been delighting cinema-goers since the late 1970s.
From camp curiosities like 1987’s Law of Desire to later, more sombre works like All About My Mother (1999) and Talk to Her (2002) the man from La Mancha has consistently delivered the widescreen goods, picking up Oscars, Golden Globes, and BAFTAs along the way.
Now he’s turning his attention to photography, with Waiting for Light, a newly-opened exhibition of still lifes at New York’s Marlborough Gallery.
The 69-year-old – whose latest film, Pain and Glory is gearing up to compete in the Palme d’Or at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and sees him collaborating again with Antonio Banderas, a long time Almodóvar regular – shot the bulk of the work which makes up the show at his own home.
Suitably colourful – and Pedro is one of the great deployers of colour in cinema – the florally-focused selection of still life work paints the artist in a whole new light.
Talking to Artnet, the Spainard describes himself as a “multiply frustrated artist,” something he sees as a positive when it comes to getting on with his dayjob. “To be a good film director you need to be a frustrated artist, a frustrated painter, a frustrated decorator, a frustrated architect, a frustrated sex symbol, a frustrated actor. Being all those things makes you sensitive to all the decisions you have to bring together to be a good film director.”
Admitting that he never planned on showing his photographic work in a gallery context, the Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown director says, “I don’t know if I’ll continue to be an artist at the same time as a film director, but it’s a great feeling to be starting out in something. It‘s extremely exciting to be making those first steps and to feel newly naïve.”