French filmmaker Chris Marker was one of the world's most highly regarded and experimental figures in cinema. Marker's classic fiction film and best known work, La Jetée, was made in 1962; his first feature-length documentary was produced a decade before. His documentary work includes profiles of the artists Matta and Christo, and film directors Tarkovsky and Kurosawa. Marker's film works make deliberate use of a restricted visual palette, adopting the techniques of cinema's silent era, using dissolves, subtitles and montage effects.
In the 1990s he began working with new technologies, reworking elements from his earlier film and television for the video installation Zapping Zones (1992). Marker's video works range from idiosyncratic documentaries to poetic meditations. Among his media-based projects are an interactive CD-Rom entitled Immemory (1998) and the feature film Level Five.
Writes Bill Horrigan, curator at the Wexner Center for the Arts in Columbus, Ohio: "Although Marker is widely regarded as one of the few indispensable, inimitable figures of post-World War II international cinema, it becomes clear that, for him, cinema is simply one expressive domain, one 'zone' and perhaps, at that, an interim or intermediate one. Having recently written, 'I betrayed Gutenberg for McLuhan a long time ago,' the genuinely self-critical Marker continues to experiment with new technological frontiers...."
Chris Marker (Christian François Bouche-Villeneuve) was born in 1921 at Neuilly sur Seine, France, and died in 2012. He fought for the French resistance during World War II and enlisted as a Paratrooper in the United States Air Force. In the 1950s Marker wrote for l'Esprit and Cahiers du cinéma and was an assistant to Alain Resnais. His work was been presented internationally. Marker was the subject of a film retrospective at The Museum of Modern Art, New York, and was a featured artist of the exhibition Passage de l'image at the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, and Documenta X, Kassel, Germany.
Marker lived in Paris until his death in 2012.