Laurence Kardish, the longtime Senior Film Curator At The Museum of Modern Art in New York, is retiring this fall after 44 years on the job. October 15th will be Kardish's last day, and will mark the end of an era at MoMA. In a 2005 interview with Gothamist, the venerable curator said, "When I began, the Department of Film was marginalized, but that is no longer true."
Kardish started out as a lowly curatorial assistant in 1968, but quickly made his mark on the institution through his breadth and depth of knowledge about film and the work of auteur filmmakers worldwide. He's championed Weimar-era German films, 60s avant-garde productions, and French films from all eras, and was a part of the selection committee on the New Directors/New Films festival since its inception in 1972. He also co-wrote a book, titled, "Weimar Cinema, 1919-1933: Daydreams and Nightmares" to accompany a four month, 81-film program at MoMA in 2010.
Laurence Kardish being awarded the Berlinale Golden Camera at the Berlin International Film Festival in 2006. All photographs courtesy of the Berlin International Film Festival.
"Connecting the dots in cinema history is critical. While every national cinema has its own hallmarks, none exist in complete isolation. Larry has helped generations of cinephiles understand and appreciate those connections," wrote Rajendra Roy, the Celeste Bartos Chief Curator of Film at MoMA, in an e-mail to The Huffington Post today.
Readers: what are your memories of seeing films at MoMA? Let us know in the comments section below.