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Matthias Reichelt & Reinhild Dettmer-Finke:
Shoa and Pin-Ups
The NO!-Artist Boris Lurie

Documentary 2006 | 56 min
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PLOT : SHOAH and PIN-UPS is a film about breaking a taboo. In his art the 80-year old New York NO! Artist, Boris Lurie, brings together what doesn’t belong together: the gassed corpses and the naked, the Shoah and pin-ups. It’s not perverted art, but a comment on a perverted society, says Lurie, and he draws a line from the Shoah to the war in Iraq. And he would have so liked to have painted comfortable, comforting things, like the Impressionists did. But something kept him from doing that. And that something is what this film searches. The search takes us via Riga and Buchenwald to the New York of the 50s and 60s, when NO! Art developed as an obstinate reaction to Pop Art. Boris Lurie’s NO! is his motto: NO! to the expectations of the art market. NO! to bourgeois decorum! NO! to victim mentality. A film about the timeless timely questions of remembering and about coping with the extermination of the Jews through art.

defi-filmproduktion Freiburg / Germany | Color | 56 min | New York 2006 | Camera: Rainer Hoffmann | Sound / Cut: Mike Schlömer | Bass: Dieter Ilg | Sounddesign: Martin Langenbach | Redaktion: Sabine Rollberg

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LolitaBoris Lurie homeBoris Lurie in his studio
Boris Lurie installationadolescent Boris LurieBoris Lurie with his dog
Boris Lurie with NO bagBoris Lurie filmingBoris Lurie and Rocco Armento in Woodstock
Boris Lurie and the filmproducer Reinhild Dettmer-Finke in New York
click on image to enlarge

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02-21-2007 | Hunter College, Room 1527, 695 Park Avenu, New York
02-22-2007 | Makor /Steinhardt Center, 35 West 67th Street, New York
02-23-2007 | Anthology Film Archives, 32 Second Ave, New York

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If Matthias is a significant player in this Boris team then Matthias should make his case about the film. Why he did not fact check with Kim about her employment and the photograph issue. Should Mr. Nadelman be expected to explain the relationship between the film and the - yet to be defined thing . . .

The film attempts to lay out and define who Boris is, and who the people are around Boris... these definitions are made by a member of the yet to be defined by Mr. Nadelman. Did Boris pay any money, or give charity of any kind, or contribute in anyway, to the making of this film- beyond just being in it? Did Boris ever have a chance to see and understand the development, direction, how the film was progressing?

I also differ with Matthias's screen impression of Boris. Giving the impression that Boris was a doddering old man, puttering with art, a man of leisure, and only concentrating on Wall Street, implying his only fixation was on money. Portraying Boris as only interested in, and fixated on money, other than being a little bit of a cliché, is wrong. Boris, in the later part of his life, was active as a writer. He was a poet and a writer of fiction. Boris's most recent book, published by Eckhart, is Boris's writings.

There was no mention of Dietmar in this film. Why not? If not for Dietmar... non of the present day Germans would have even known about Boris. What is Matthias's role in Boris's affairs? We need to get a proper history done of Boris.

Matthias's version is way off track. It is simplistic and not correct. It makes Boris into an incidental character, which he is not. The film is weak. I was upset at the end of the movie discussion period, when Matthias stated that Boris has seen his day. That Boris is no longer an influence. That there are no young people interested in Boris and NO!art. When I brought out the fact that I had shown Boris's books and works to many people, including the younger generation, and found many interested parties, Matthias blew this off. How does Matthias think Ami came into the picture? I introduced Ami to NO!art and Boris. Ami made a historically significant film on Boris. Boris also loved Ami's film. There were several younger literary types who admired Boris.

Where is Matthias getting his information from? Matthias publicly concluded that I am just some incidental guy in an obscure small space, in this unimportant neighborhood, that both the LES and Clayton really do not amount to much of anything, and has no connection to anything note worthy. Matthias can classify me in whatever way he wants. But he is mistaken to marginalize me too much, or to make too little of my reach, respect, or connections.

I will not tolerate Boris being classified as some incidental artist from the 20th century and is only interesting because he survived the holocaust, is Jewish, and fixed on money. I would like to clarify what Matthias's position is with regard to Boris's art and estate. —Clayton Patterson | Excerpt from an article written 2007


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A film about an old man who was persuaded of a documentary during his illness in old age. The film misses any information about the co-founders of the NO!art movement like the artists Sam Goodman and Stanley Fisher, by whom and with whom he became known as NO!artist. Likewise, lack of any information on his former girlfriend and gallery owner Gertrude Stein, who promoted him in the 60's, the gallery owner Janos Gat, who organized the recent exhibitions of him in New York, and his many friends he motivated to a NO!art involvement. It lacks information about his friend Dietmar Kirves who promoted him in germany since the early 80's. It also lacks any information about the NO!art webpage which operated with Boris' financial support since 2000. See

There have done already better films about Boris Lurie such as that of Rudij Bergmann "Lurie Portrait" and that of Amikam Goldman "NO art Man!" (2003) and the one by Naomi Tereza Salmon "optimistic - disease - facility" (2003). See the video streams on NO!art website link

There is no evidence of his poetic work "Geschriebigtes-Gedichtigtes", which was published in a comprehensive book on the occasion of his exhibition at the Buchenwald Memorial. The artistic work of Boris Lurie consists only a few works which touch on the subject "Shoah and Pinup". They have no pictorial relation to the Iraq war as it mentions a german newspaper which was influenced by the German filmmakers. His work is rather dominated by the motto that "NO!art occupies the strategic juncture where artistic production meets socio-cultural action. NO!art targets are the hypocritical intelligentsia, capitalist culture manipulation and consumerism. NO!art aims total unabashed self-expression in art leading to social involvement." Nothing about this told us the film.

It proves here again that filmmakers who have access to public event places can launch documentaries which only fragmentarily draw a picture of a person that does not correspond to reality. It is curious to see how hanger-ons work on the Holocaust want to become more importance through. What does that actually mean: Shoah and Pinup? Lets itself deal with such a subject so cheap? Unfortunately, Boris Lurie can not say anything more about this film, because he can no longer communicate with us. He is presently in a hospice after a heavy stroke". —Dietmar Kirves, Berlin (NO!art headquarters east)

related links:
Boris Lurie Filmportrait Boris Lurie NO!art man optimistic-disease-facility
Sam Goodman Stanley Fisher Boris Lurie: Geschriebigtes-Gedichtigtes
NO!art anthology

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