• James Rutherford

'Faces Places': A Unique and Enchanting Collaboration Between Two Esteemed French Artists


Movie poster for the documentary Faces Places featuring JR and Agnés Varda

"Faces Places" ("Visages, Villages") is an enchanting documentary film about the unlikely collaboration between famed street artist JR and renowned French filmmaker Agnés Varda. Despite their dramatic age difference (55 years), they develop a unique camaraderie that underlies the delightful adventures that unfold along the course of the film's running time. Mutual admirers of one other's work from afar, they decide soon after meeting in 2015 to partner on a documentary entailing a road trip throughout rural France, focused on the creation and installation of JR's signature large-scale black and white photographs. Traveling in his custom-made van that doubly operates as an enhanced format photo booth, they embrace an artistic mission steeped in humanism and appreciation for the beauty in rural communities, landscapes and human faces. Written and directed by JR and Varda themselves, 'Faces Places' is an altogether wonderful depiction of good will and accord, delivered in a seemingly effortless manner and bristling with an undeniable spirit of joie de vivre. This air of casual whimsy permeates their efforts to celebrate and honor the communities they encounter and the special souls they are delighted to illuminate with their work. A rarified, noble-minded depiction of artistry and graciousness, "Faces Places" is an unprecedented triumph in non-fiction storytelling.

 

View the trailer: