Charles Dekeukeleire

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Charles Dekeukeleire
Born(1905-02-27)27 February 1905
Ixelles
Died2 June 1971(1971-06-02) (aged 66)
Werchter
NationalityBelgian
OccupationFilm director
Known forAvant-garde cinema

Charles Dekeukeleire (27 February 1905 – 2 June 1971) was a Belgian film director. He pioneered modern Belgian film with Henri Storck. He was inspired by French avant-garde cinema, particularly the works of Germaine Dulac.

Biography[edit]

Dekeukeleire was born in Ixelles and died in Werchter. For his first film, Combat de Boxe, produced in 1927, Dekeukeleire staged a boxing match in his room based on a poem by Paul Werrie. Dekeukeleire recruited two professional boxers, one of which was the Belgian lightweight boxing champion. The abrupt changes of scale, the use of overprinting, and the use of very short shots alternating between the spectators and the fighters made this film unusually complex for the Twenties.

He returned to this idea the following year with his masterpiece, Impatience, which is close to futurism. When it premiered, Charles Dekeukeleire stated that the gaze of the spectators must adapt, to let itself slip along with the film to feel the fragments of various lengths. The desire for physical contact with the machine is at the base of this film. In this drama with four characters (the Mountain, the abstract Motorbike, the Woman and the Blocks), the mechanical body, that of the Motorbike is strongly associated with the female body, first clothed and then naked with leather. Dekeukeleire exchanges parts between the two characters, resulting in a suggestive motorbike-woman/woman-motorbike. These two characters, the Motorbike and the Woman, then enter into interaction with the abstracted Mountain and Blocks, as if the director intended analogies between humanity, the animal world, the vegetable world and the mechanical world.

In 1929, he filmed Histoire de détective, a surrealist inspiration. These first three avant-garde silent films made his name in cinematography.

His work then oscillated between documentaries and commissioned works.[1] His work deals with race at times, for example in Terres brûlées (Burned Grounds, 1934), which chronicles an automobile journey through the Belgian Congo.

Dekeukeleire made one hundred films in a career spanning four decades.[2]

Writing career[edit]

Dekeukeleire published articles in reviews such as 7 Arts, Nouvelle Team, and The Latest News. He is also the author of two books: The Social Emotion and The Film and Thought, Extra Light, Brussels, 1947.

Films[edit]

1927

1928

  • Impatience - 35 mm, black and white, silent, 36'.

1929

1930

  • Witte vlam - 35 mm, black and white, silent, 11'.
  • Dixmude - 35 mm, black and white, silent.

1931

1932

1934

1936

1937

1938

1939

1942

1943

1945

1946

1947

1948

1949

1950

1951

1952

1953

1954

1955

1956

1957

1958

1958

1962

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Charles Dekeukeleire" (in German). Kino Im Sprengel. Retrieved 23 August 2010.
  2. ^ Jungblut, Guy; Leboutte, Patrick; Païni, Dominique (1990). Une encyclopédie des cinémas de Belgique. Musée d'art moderne de la ville de Paris. ISBN 978-2-87340-077-4.

External links[edit]