THREE THINGS: SEARCHING FOR TADZIO, BARNABY BARFORD’S “LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT” (2011), WILHELM KUMM’S DER HELOT (1891)

SEARCHING FOR TADZIO (“Alla ricerca di Tadzio”) is an Italian TV documentary, broadcast in 1970. It offers a detailed look at the arduous process that Luchino Visconti and his crew had to go through to cast a pivotol role in the director’s upcoming production, “Death in Venice.” Visconti is the credited director of this featurette, and Oreste Del Buono wrote the spoken text.

In the winter of 1970, Italian filmmaker Luchino Visconti travels throughout Northern and Eastern Europe in search of a boy to play “Tadzio” in his adaptation of Thomas Mann’s novella “Death in Venice.” In Stockholm, Visconti discovers Björn Andrésen, a young Swedish actor, ideally suited to portray Mann’s tangible vision of perfect beauty.

Visconti’s credit as director of this documentary is something of a misnomer. SEARCHING FOR TADZIO doesn’t display any of his filmmaking artistry, and he’s obviously not directing anything here. What we see are images of Visconti, looking tired, happy, or grave, as he makes preparations for “Death in Venice.” We also hear, throughout, passages from the novella, underlying some of the choices the director would eventually make.

In Italian, with English subtitles.

BARNABY BARFORD’S WEBSITE
“LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT” was part of Barford’s 2011 show “LOVE IS…”

WILHELM KUMM’S DER HELOT (L’Hilote) 1891. Can’t find anything about the artist or more shots of the full sculpture. Kumm doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page.

Found this passage (via THOMAS COOL): “The new friends who my parents liked a lot were the two young German sculptors who lived in one of the ateliers of the German Akademy, there behind the path with the cypresses. One of who is Wilhelm Kumm (1861- 1939), the other likely Paul Peterich (1864-1937). The youngest had received the Prix de Rome, the prize for the best statue in a competition, and could stay in Rome for a couple of years with the money linked to the prize. He had taken along his friend; in the past they had switched roles, when the eldest had a prize to work in Paris and had taken along the youngest.


(About 1894, Bookends: Kumm (Left) Peterich (Right)

The youngest was a beautiful man with a handsome shock of red hair and a shining beard. He was slim, and walked like dancing on the world. He also smiled friendly, he was a really handsome German, he with his velvet jacket. The eldest was very different, broad and sturdy, the head somewhat between the shoulders and with stumps of a dark beard he was by far not as handsome.”

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