by José Antonio SISTIAGA
1970 / 16mm / b&w / silent / 1S / 7' 15

One day, the artist was waiting for a girlfriend named Ana, who notified him at the last moment that she could not come because she was leaving for Germany for work.

To film himself in this moment of disappointment and despair was the artist's way of immediately getting back to work. Some would have written in their diary; Sistiaga made a self-portrait film of the artist in a saturnine mood: a reference to the famous lithograph by Dürer, Melencolia, in which the window evokes the universe of painting.

The artist enters into the frame of the camera, which is fixed on a tripod, and sits down for some time in front of a background of crates and boxes. He leaves the frame and then comes back, and so on three times. Then, he poses in front of the window, casting a vague glance outside...
His tense face shows the effects of his bitter state of mind at the moment. The action is repeated with variations... his face is exasperated, almost mad. But is he really looking at us? The repetition of gestures: enter/leave, turn away the gaze, ... signals the situation's singularity, without beginning or end, no hope of a happy end.

We think, of course, of Andy Warhol's SCREEN TESTS, where the pop artist made passers-by at the Factory pose for the duration of a 16mm roll - about 3 minutes. There is a common idea behind the SCREEN TESTS and ANA, the same attempt at a filmic "truth", a search for an interior "authenticity" appearing within the image.

— Jean Michel Bouhours, excerpt from the catalogue of the exhibition "Sistiaga De Rerum Natura", San Sebastian, 2022.


distribution format Digital file on server (FHD)
version restored version
screen 16/9 (single screen)
speed 25 fps
sound silent
rental fee 41,00 €