Thomas Bernhard’s The Voice Imitator: 104 Stories as selected by Barbara Sternberg
Barbara Sternberg in attendance
In conjunction with Pleasure Dome’s world premiere presentation of Barbara Sternberg’s in the nature of things (2011) a selection of excerpts from Thomas Bernhard’s The Voice Imitator: 104 Stories have been selected by Sternberg to be read aloud and discussed by participants.
The central image of in the nature of things is the Forest–sometimes fearful, sometimes a refuge, always mysterious–and the multiple associations and myths embedded in it. But, unexpected moments, intensified fragments, catch us unawares: the present confronts us. in the nature of things continues Sternberg’s examination of the oppositions played out dialectically and enmeshed in our experience of living: culture/nature, experience/representation, belonging/destroying, communal/individual, innocence/danger, young/old, living/dying. This is an autumnal film–twilight–a film of old age. Just as the Forest is a transitional space, so Old Age is a transitional time.
Thomas Bernhard’s The Voice Imitator is a darkly comic work. A series of parable-like anecdotes—some drawn from newspaper reports, some from conversation, some from hearsay—this satire is both subtle and acerbic. What initially appear to be quaint little stories inevitably indict the sterility and callousness of modern life, not just in urban centers but everywhere.
Participants are encouraged to attend Pleasure Dome’s screening of in the nature of things on Saturday, 18 February 2012, at 4pm at Jackman Hall (317 Dundas Street West).
Please note that the film will not be screened at the salon.
Thomas Bernhard (1931-89) was an Austrian novelist, playwright and poet. Bernhard, whose body of work has been called “the most significant literary achievement since World War II,” is widely considered to be one of the most important German-speaking authors of the postwar era.
Toronto filmmaker Barbara Sternberg has been making films since the mid-seventies. Her films have been screened widely across Canada as well as internationally at the Pompidou Centre in Paris, Kino Arsenal in Berlin, The Museum of Modern Art and Millennium Workshop in New York, and the Ontario Cinematheque, Toronto. Her work is in the collection of the Art Gallery of Ontario and the National Gallery of Canada. She has been a visiting artist at a number of Canadian universities and galleries including the University of Guelph, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Dunlop Art Gallery, as well as the Universite d’Avignon, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In 2011, Sternberg was made a Laureate of the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts.
Image credit: Barbara Sternberg, in the nature of things, 16mm, 2011.