Benoît Dervaux

*1966, Liège, Belgium. Lives and works in Bruxelles, Belgium.

Benoît Dervaux studied direction of photography at the Institute of Media Arts in Louvain-la-Neuve. This lead him to a lengthy collaboration with Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardeene, working on many of their films, such as La promesse, Rosetta, L’enfant and Le silence de Lorna. In 2000, he directed La Devinière, which on the Library prize at the Cinéma du Réel festival of the Pompidou Centre. In 2002, he began collaborating with choreographer Heddy Maalem in the context of Time of Images, a festival co-produced by Arte and La Ferme du Buisson. This gave rise to the production of Black Spring (winner of the “Best Dance for the Camera” prize, New York, 2003). He then worked with Solveig Anspach and Daniel Danis. Since 2004, he has been researching abstraction and the hypothetical links between image in motion and painting. Elements of his work on this question were integrated in the staging of Sacre du printemps by Heddy Maleem. In 2005, he acted as cinematographer in the making of director Jean-Pierre Denis’s La petite chartreuse and, in November of that year, the Vienna cinémathèque organized a retrospective of his films.

MAALEM A Rose is a rose 

Une rose est une rose est une rose [with Heddy Maalem] / Algeria-­France / 2007 / 10’37 / 4:3

As we move in and out of urban spaces defined by powers that be, how do we find the place that is specifically ours? How do we stake our ground? How do we move beyond preconceptions of race and gender, status and origins? These questions are at the heart of choreographer Heddy Maalem’s work. In this piece, a solo for female dancer, a body does the asking, alternately questioning, asserting, appearing full­‐screen and disappearing at the edges as if being slowly devoured by the impossibly white landscape against which she seeks to affirm her identity.