Venice FF

Jon Nguyen, Olivia Neergaard-Holm – David Lynch: The Art Life #Venezia73

Play Podcast
6 min. and 9 sec.

A portrait of the artist as a young man.

Play Podcast
6 min. and 9 sec.

PODCAST | Matt Micucci interviews Jon Nguyen, Olivia Neergaard-Holm, co-directors of the documentary David Lynch: The Art Life from Venezia 73.

To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture

David Lynch is certainly one of the most influential filmmakers of the modern era, and his work is regularly celebrated by other directors, artists and critics alike. The latest filmic study of Lynch is a documentary which looks at the man and the artist, with a personal tone, and focuses particularly on the time before he made his first feature film, Eraserhead, in 1977.

Jon Nguyen and Olivia Neergaard-Holm directed the film, alongside Rick Barnes, and we catch up with them at the 73rd Venice Film Festival, where David Lynch: The Art Life was presented in the Venice Classics section. Interesting to note the different approaches the two, in particular, brought to the screen. Nguyen had worked on two previous documentaries on Lynch before this one, and is on friendly and close terms with the filmmaker. On the other hand, Neergard-Hold had no such personal connection to Lynch, and relied upon the footage to establish that connection and select the material that then made up the final work; a final work, which as she says, she hopes will be for both fans of David Lynch and for those who are not.

DAVID LYNCH: THE ART LIFE. David Lynch takes us on an intimate journey through the formative years of his life. From his idyllic upbringing in small town America to the dark streets of Philadelphia, we follow Lynch as he traces the events that have helped to shape one of cinema’s most enigmatic directors.

David Lynch: The Art Life infuses Lynch’s own art, music and early films, shining a light into the dark corners of his unique world, giving audiences a better understanding of the man and the artist. As Lynch states “I think every time you do something, like a painting or whatever, you go with ideas and sometimes the past can conjure those ideas and color them, even if they’re new ideas, the past colors them.” We’re invited in and given a private view from Lynch’s compound and painting studio in the hills high above Hollywood, as Lynch retells personal stories from his past that unfold like scenes from his films. Strange characters come into focus, only to fade again into the past, leaving an indelible mark on Lynch, the artist.

We become witnesses to the fears, misunderstandings and struggles that Lynch overcomes and, along the way, meet the various people that have helped to mold him. It becomes evident early on in Lynch’s life that he views the world differently, absorbing its shadows and weaving a dream like tapestry for audiences worldwide to become tangled in. By pulling back the curtains on the icon we hope to uncover the individual, David Lynch.

  • Reporter
    Matt Micucci
  • Guest
    Olivia Neergaard-Holm, Jon Nguyen
  • Interviewee role
  • Film title
    David Lynch: The Art Life
  • Festival section
    Venice Classics
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