"Being famous is like old newspapers blowing down Bleecker Street"
- Jack Kerouac's introduction to The Americans
Since the publication of his landmark collection The Americans in 1958, Swiss-born Robert Frank has been regarded as perhaps the most influential photographer of his generation. Less well known— but no less groundbreaking— is Frank's work as a filmmaker. Like his photographs, Frank's films have a deceptively spontaneous quality, capturing fragments of everyday existence and elevating them to the mystical.
BAM hosts a full-career retrospective, spanning Frank's entire filmmaking oeuvre— from his first work, the definitive 1959 Beat movie Pull My Daisy in which poets Allen Ginsberg, Peter Orlovsky, Gregory Corso et al. cavort, crack wise, and upend a dinner party; to Candy Mountain, a road film featuring Tom Waits; to Conversations in Vermont, an unflinching portrait of Frank's fraught relationship with his teenage children.
Celluloid prints courtesy of Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. The Films of Robert Frank at BAM runs through September 22nd.