|The First Art Newspaper on the Net
||Established in 1996
|| Tuesday, February 20, 2018
|World's oldest cinema, where the first films of the pioneering Lumiere brothers were screened, reopens|
Cannes film festival director Thierry Fremaux delivers a speech during the official re-opening of the world's oldest cinema theater "L'Eden" on October 9, 2013 in La Ciotat, southern France. AFP PHOTO / ANNE-CHRISTINE POUJOULAT.
By: Anne Beade
LA CIOTAT (AFP).- The world's oldest movie theatre, where the first films of the pioneering Lumiere brothers were screened in 1899, reopened in a sleepy southern French town after an extensive facelift.
Gleaming, velvet seats replace dusty chairs, fresh yellow paint and mosaic tiles adorn the facade while oak floors take the place of old carpets. The Eden Theatre, which closed in 1995, had an inauguratory gala event in La Ciotat, a town near the sprawling port city of Marseille.
It was at the seafront theatre that the Lumiere brothers, Auguste and Louis, screened their first moving pictures to 250 dazzled spectators on March 21, 1899.
The brothers had previously showcased their work in other places, first at their rich, industrialist father's home and then at other cinemas, but these have since disappeared.
Over the decades, the Eden became both a cinema and theatre, and several French film stars such as Yves Montand and Fernandel performed there in the early days of their careers.
But it hit hard times in the 1980s when the then owner was killed by crooks trying to steal his money, and movie buffs just stopped going.
After that, the building opened only for one week every year to host a festival showcasing the first ever French-language movies, until its closure in 1995.
Supporters of the old, historic monument never gave up their fight to get it reopened, but it was not until Marseille was named European Capital of Culture for 2013 that local authorities finally agreed to renovations that cost six million euros ($8.1 million).
The Eden operates as a normal cinema run by a private operator, and visitors are able to wander through a permanent exhibition outlining the origins of animated pictures.
Outside, the facade has been adorned with a laser installation at night depicting a train, to mark the 50-second-long film "Arrival of a Train at La Ciotat" filmed by the Lumiere brothers in 1895.
The black and white, silent movie shows a steam train pulling into a station, and passengers getting in and out.
The story goes that when it was first screened, spectators were so terrified at the image of a train moving towards them that they leapt out of their chairs and ran out in panic, though many people have suggested this is an urban legend.
French media reports had said actresses Juliette Binoche and Nathalie Baye and film director Roman Polanski were among the stars expected to attend Wednesday's inaugural ceremony.
But organisers said Binoche would not be present.
The challenge for the Eden will be to make the 166-seat theatre economically viable, and fans of the building say it should be a larger cultural project that offers educational tours for school children, screens restored films and hosts film festivals.
© 1994-2013 Agence France-Presse
October 14, 2013
Exhibition in Marseille emphasizes the different facets of artist-architect Le Corbusier
Landmark exhibition "John Singer Sargent: Watercolors" opens at Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
New Morgan Library explores art in 18th-century Venice with more than 100 drawings
Largest exhibition of Mike Kelley's work to-date occupies all of MoMA PS1 in Long Island City
World's oldest cinema, where the first films of the pioneering Lumiere brothers were screened, reopens
Milwaukee Art Museum premieres exhibition of theatrical paintings by Thomas Sully
After falling victim to the shutdown two weeks ago, Statue of Liberty reopening delights tourists
Historic dulcimer collection featured in free musical exhibits at the Tennessee State Museum
Turner and Constable: Works from the Tate Collection on view at Turner Contemporary
Architects Museum De Lakenhal announced: International top combined with young talent
"Amar Kanwar: The Sovereign Forest + Other Stories" opens at Yorkshire Sculpture Park
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts presents works by Brooklyn-based artist KAWS
"Jason Rhoades, Four Roads" among the most ambitious exhibitions Philadelphia's ICA has ever presented
Art Gallery of New South Wales announces new Whiteley exhibition focusing on landscape
First exhibition in Germany of Conceptual artist Louise Lawler opens at Museum Ludwig
Exhibition of Brazilian contemporary art opens at Astrup Fearnley Museet
Camille Henrot presents first solo U.S. exhibition at the New Orleans Museum of Art
Island, a new exhibition based on the novel by Aldous Huxley, opens at The Dairy Art Center
Sketchbook of unseen Fergusson drawings of 1st World War Portsmouth comes to light
Ana Maria Tavares's art explores the contradictions of modern architectural and design spaces
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- The Morgan explores the Medieval world's fascinating approach to the passage of time
2.- Experts discover hidden ancient Maya structures in Guatemala
3.- Egyptian archaeologists unveil tomb of Old Kingdom priestess Hetpet
4.- The Speed Art Museum and Italian Ministry reach loan agreement on ancient calyx-krater
5.- Major exhibition features artistic masterpieces from the glorious Church of the Gesù
6.- From Beowulf to Chaucer, the British Library makes 1,000 years of rich literary history freely available online
7.- Truck damages Peru's ancient Nazca lines
8.- Trish Duebber is new Coordinator of Youth Programs at Boca Raton Museum Art School
9.- Exhibition examines the way art, like language, was used to articulate a rhetoric of exclusion
10.- The Dallas Museum of Art announces gift of three major European works
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.