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Gregory Markopoulos Print

Gregory Markopoulos “The Temenos and Eniaios”

Temenos, Inc., a not-for-profit corporation founded in 1994, is dedicated to the development of individual and noncommercial filmmaking through the restoration and exhibition of films by the late Gregory J. Markopoulos. In an effort led by filmmaker Robert Beavers, who worked closely with Markopoulos for nearly thirty years, Temenos, Inc. in New York - as well as the Temenos Association in Zurich , founded in 1999 - were created to support these endeavors. Much of Markopoulos's film work was not seen during his lifetime because the monumental film cycles of his final work, ENIAIOS, never became available as projection copies. The Temenos Archive in Zurich maintains the organic unity of Markopoulos's films and all related materials, The archive also provides access to the writings of G. J. Markopoulos and R. Beavers and other valuable documents on their work. The 22 film cycles of ENIAIOS which Markopoulos conceived to be presented at the site near Lyssaraia in Arcadia , are currently being restored and printed at Cinema Arts film lab.

Markopoulos's contribution to Film and its renewed recognition Gregory J. Markopoulos was one of the first filmmakers to articulate the ideal of a filmmaker as creator of every aspect of a film and to realize this in his work. He also conceived how his films should be presented and kept with his written archive, giving to this idea of organic unity the name TEMENOS, a classical Greek term meaning 'a piece of land set apart,' with reference to the tradition of Asklepios.

Markopoulos's contributions to film form begin with his earliest work of the 1940s, develop through the subsequent decades, and culminate in ENIAIOS, on which he worked during the final years of his life. His important innovations, such as editing with the smallest unit of film (the single frame), and the simultaneous narrative of past, present, and future, or his most individual use of colour, are all directed towards the representation and resolution of complex emotions. These innovations prefigure many contemporary practices in the arts. The TEMENOS grew out of a need to preserve the films and to create a specific setting in harmony with the work for its presentation. The idea of the TEMENOS, itself, helped to sustain Markopoulos's vision and allowed him to endure the solitude necessary to realize ENIAIOS over many years. The dangers inherent in such a vision were that his work might have been lost without reaching its public.

Since the mid-1990's, the films of Gregory Markopoulos have received renewed public recognition through their exhibition by numerous institutions, including the New York Film Festival 1997; Rotterdam International Film Festival 1999; Istanbul Biennial 1999, Auditorium du Louvre 1998, 2000, and 2002; and the Whitney Museum of American Art 1996 (retrospective exhibition), 1999, and 2000. All events have been coordinated by Robert Beavers through the Temenos Archive. Although Markopoulos's films are now recognized as highly innovative works of art by the most esteemed film institutions around the world, the ideal setting for his films remains the Peloponnese .

In 1980, Gregory J. Markopoulos and Robert Beavers held the first of a series of open-air screenings on the terraced fields near the village of Lyssaraia in the Peloponnese . These screenings took place nearly every year during the 1980's. Their intention was to present the films in an environment conducive to their full appreciation.

Recent Temenos events organized by Robert Beavers in Paris, Zurich, Toronto, New York, and San Francisco have introduced Markopoulos's work to an audience beyond the small circle of connoisseurs and have prepared a new public for the summer screenings in where the ENIAIOS film cycles will be premiered as they are restored and printed. The spectators will approach and remember ENIAIOS through the landscape that inspired it. This will not only allow audiences to view part of this large-scale work for the first time, it will also help to make visible the entire project for prospective patrons and supporting foundations. The ultimate goal is to raise awareness of this unique achievement in Film.

Robert Beavers
Website:http://www.the-temenos.org

 
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