The journal of the Center for Documentary Arts, a nonprofit initiative to bear witness to suffering and promote the common good through the arts. At the crossroads of art, ethics, faith, and social justice, the Center brings together makers and thinkers whose work advances beauty, compassion, collaboration, dignity, and mercy.

18 February 2011

Human Condition

When I came up with the term "documentary art," I was looking for a phrase that was inclusive and fluid, one that would capture the narrative, "real life" essence of traditional non-fiction forms (photography, oral history, documentary film) while preserving the appeal to mind and soul that accompanies the fine arts of painting, drama, poetry, song -- as well as uniquely powerful creations like the AIDS quilt or Maya Lin's Vietnam Veterans Memorial. I devised the term, and quickly discovered, of course, that on Google it was already in use more than seventy-two thousand times, usually meaning something far more restrictive than I intended. My conception remains unchanged.

The Center for Documentary Arts is committed to artists whose work captures the human condition -- artists who cut deeper than fact and draw out our understanding and compassion. From Art & Document friend Gayle Sulik comes this inspirational video by French filmmaker Philippe Joubert, a humane short that magnificently fulfills the meaning of what the Center is about.

embark on a journey

put yourself into the music

play the sport

feel your self-confidence

so that your resolutions 

become revolutions


Gayle Sulik said...

Thank you for posting this video with your readers. It is a phenomenal testimony to the human condition in both its simplicity and complexity. I learned of the video through one of the participants, Cathie Malhouitre. Her blog (in French) can be found here.

Timothy Cahill said...

Hi Gayle, Cathie's grace, beauty, and courage in the aftermath of her breast cancer are an eloquent affirmation of life, as is the tenacity of all the individuals in the film. Thanks to her and to you for bringing this exquisite gem to A&D, and to Philippe Joubert for creating it. Cheers, Tim

Beth Rosenkoetter said...

Thank you Tim and Gayle for sharing this. Really magnificent.

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