News Update
November 24, 2012
Quad Cinema
New York, NY
Documentary opens Friday 11/23 at Quad Cinema, New York
Opening of 'Gottfried Helnwein and the Dreaming Child'
Directed by Lisa Kirk Colburn
November 23, Quad Cinema 1:00, 4:15, 7:35 34 West 13th Street, New York, NY 10011 p: 212-255-2243 f: 212-255-2247
Helnwein's vision is revealed as grand and arresting. The film rightly admires Helnwein's work and serves it best when just showing it.
Village Voice
Gottfried Helnwein and the Dreaming Child is both a visual feast and landmark union of artistic titans Levin and Helnwein, both concerned with the theme of childhood innocence betrayed.
Atlanta Jewish Film Festival
Helnwein's realization of the final scene takes the breath away
Toronto Star
Helnwein's eternal theme, inspired by the Holocaust, is children and their violated innocence.
New York Times
The sets and costumes designed by the artist are indeed visually impressive, especially a haunting image of children suspended over the stage like ascending angels.
The Hollywood Reporter
What we are allowed to see of the actual production is impressive indeed, in terms of set design, color, lighting and dramatic impact. Helnwein pulls off a fourth-act coup de theatre, staging Levin’s idea of a pile of dead children as a more viscerally exciting image of suspended bodies, like barely alive puppets, which is quite breathtaking.
One of the great things about this documentary is that, while many out there might be familiar with Helnwein’s artwork or installations, they may not be familiar with where his ideas come from, or what it’s like when he works. In that way, the film is a wonderful look at a stunning contemporary artist.
Film Threat
It will prove to be Helnwein’s greatest coup de theater, a hypnotic final-act tableau of dozens of “dead children” suspended in black space. This time there can be little doubt that Helnwein’s judgment is correct; even on screen the effect is startling and eerily beautiful.
The Jewish Week
Helnwein has produced an impressive body of work, largely informed by the horrors of the Holocaust. It was the themes and sensitivities of his oeuvre that inspired the Israeli Opera to commission Helnwein’s designs for an ambitious new production. Lisa Kirk Colburn documents the visual artist’s sometime dramatic collaborative process in Gottfried Helnwein and the Dreaming Child, which opens this Friday in New York.
Images of children in various states of vulnerability reappear over and over in his photo-realist paintings. Not surprisingly, Helnwein had a deep affinity for Hanoch Levin’s allegorical play, The Dreaming Child and its Helnweinesque title character.
When Helnwein designs a stage production, he does not dash off a few set decorations and call it a day. Essentially, he takes over the show, at least to judge by the evidence of Dreaming Child. Director and co-librettist Omri Nitzan comes across like an evenhanded mediator, but some of the Opera’s creative crew clash repeatedly with the celebrity artist. That’s just what you get when you bring in a design auteur.
An engaging art documentary, Dreaming Child also offers additional social-historical significance by forthrightly exploring the themes of Helnwein and Levin’s work. Recommended for Helnwein’s fans and patrons of Israeli culture, Gottfried Helnwein and the Dreaming Child opens this Friday (11/23) in New York at the Quad Cinema.
Joe Bendel
Lisa Kirk Colburn
Director/Executive Producer
Lin Arison
Executive Producer
Alex Gans
The Child Dreams 6
mixed media (oil and acrylic on canvas), 2011, 239 x 437 cm / 94 x 172''
Installation for the opera 'The Child Dreams'
2010, by Hanoch Levin, music: Gil Shoat, New Israeli Opera, Tel Aviv
Gottfried Helnwein and the Dreaming Child

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