“Moving Spaces: Production Design + Film,” a thematic exhibit on the art and practicalities of production design for films, is on display at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The show features 120 drawings, photos and maquettes by 28 production designers, many of them from Europe, with a particular emphasis on Germany.The show at the Academy’s fourth floor gallery is divided into five thematic areas: “Private Spaces,” “Spaces of Power,” “Transit Spaces,” “Stages” and “Labyrinths.” They feature solutions that various production designers came up with in creating sets for such spaces. Video clips from highlighted films are projected separately.Films represented include The Cabinet of Caligari (1919), The Blue Angel (1933), The Red Shoes (1948), Mon Oncle (1958), The Apartment (1960), Last Year at Marienbad (1961), Alien (1979), The Name of the Rose (1986) and The Terminal (2004). Among production designers with work on display are Alexandre Trauner, Dante Ferretti, Ken Adam, Alex McDowell, Erich Kettelhut, Robert Herlth, Hans JÃ¼rgen Kiebach, Henri Schmitt and Jacques Saulnier with Volker SchlÃ¶ndorff.“These are some of the great artists of our time,” noted Nils Warnecke, one the exhibit’s curators from Berlin who was in Los Angeles for the gala opening on January 19. “The audience in the cinema may not pay attention to it—they’re preoccupied with the actors and maybe the director—but this is one of the most important parts of the filmmaking process and has been from the very beginning.”This will be the only US stop for the exhibit. It ends April 16 and moves to Tokyo. The Academy’s fourth floor gallery at its Beverly Hills building is open Tuesday through Friday, 10 to 5 and weekends noon to 6.
Written by Jack Egan