30 September 2009

Blek end uajt

A political animation film, directed by Ivan Ivanov and Vano Leonid Amairik (1932).
The film was inspired by Mayakovsky's drawings and words. In 1925, with a permission to travel abroad, Mayakovsky took a boat to the United States of America. His poem Black and White came about as a direct attack on racism that he observed in Cuba (where he landed first).
Only fragments of the film were found, without restorable sound. It was decided to underscore the fragments with excerpts from Sometimes I feel like a Motherless Child as recorded by Paul Robeson in 1949 in Moscow.
Robeson, a son of an American slave who taught Russians to sing Ol’ Man River in Russian, was of course not an incidental choice.

1 comment:

  1. Very strange animation. The (white) Americans are portrayed as such freakish, devilish caricatures that it reminded me of caricatures that nazis made of Jews around the same time.