Where and when
Conference by Paolo Bolpagni
With the screening of:
L’arte di Rosai, 1957, 12 minutes
Deposizione di Raffaello, 1948, 12 minutes
Antelami: Battistero di Parma, 1963, 13 minutes
The critofilm was defined by Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti as an “art criticism (penetration, interpretation, reconstruction of the process of the work of art or the artist) made with cinematographic means, rather than with words“.
Ragghianti, between 1948 and 1964, made twenty-one critofilms: the first is “Raphael’s Deposition”, the last is the grandiose and complex “Michelangelo”.
Ragghianti’s cinematographic activity was initially carried out through the Italian Art History Studio in Florence, and subsequently with the creation of the “cinematographic selection”, within which eighteen of the twenty-one critofilms were created. Ragghianti makes the cinematographic medium an effective tool for critical investigation and dissemination, trying to reconstruct and restore the visual and formal paths of the works of the artists treated.
From antiquity to the twentieth century, from painting to numismatics, from architecture to urban planning, the critofilms are also the result of Ragghianti’s theoretical reflection on cinema, which began in the 1930s. Their value is manifold: documentaries, art criticism essays in film form, dissemination tools. Always with an exemplary use and mastery of the medium, without ever enslaving the image to the word (“first I went around and then I wrote the lyrics”, declared Ragghianti).
The conference will also be an opportunity to reflect on another aspect: can critofilms be considered as works of cinematographic art with an autonomous aesthetic value?
In the photo: Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti during the shooting of a critofilm. Courtesy of the Lycian Art Study Center Foundation and Carlo Ludovico Ragghianti