Through the Lens: The Early Days of the Rothko Chapel as Seen by François de Menil

Presented in Collaboration with Aurora Picture Show

François de Menil, a son of Chapel co-founders Dominique and John de Menil, filmed key moments of the Chapel’s early years, including interviews with his parents.  The filming was completed in 1972 but was just recently digitized by filmmakers de Menil and Jerry Michaels.  Along with interviews with the senior de Menils about their decision to commission the painter Mark Rothko in 1964, and the spiritual goals of the building, the film captures the interfaith commitment of the Chapel through three religious ceremonies in the Chapel: a Catholic service, a Presbyterian Lenten service, and an Islamic prayer.  The film also shows rare archival footage of Mrs. de Menil dedicating the Chapel to the people of Houston in 1971 and captures the contemplative nature of the space with slow shots of the interior and of visitors experiencing the art and architecture.  The film will be shown on the Chapel's plaza and will be followed by a question and answer session and reception with the filmmaker.

Saturday, October 1, 2011
7:00 PM

Watch rare film on the early history of the Rothko Chapel.