Miuccia Prada is a designer who, through her work, investigates feminine identity. Her collections depict women as the site of complex intersections of subjectivity. Every woman, she has stated, carries on her body fragments of her own history, her experiences, her loves, her dramas. To this end, the designer has joined in a unique collaboration with American writer/director David O. Russell involving the development of PAST FORWARD, a multi-platform film project.

Acclaimed for his work with exuberant ensembles of actors in films such as American Hustle, The Fighter, and Silver Linings Playbook, Russell imagined PAST FORWARD as a surreal, silent dreamscape with multiple actors replaying scenes in shifting combinations. The result is an unreliable story, a parallax view wherein the scenes, characters, costumes, genres, and even the multiple endings, repeat and morph, refusing the logic of conventional narrative. In so doing Russell represents his characters as elements of a complex collage, the viewer is left to decode what is experience, what is memory, what is dream, and discern the overlap and differences between them.

Starring Allison Williams, Freida Pinto, Kuoth Wiel, John Krasinski, Jack Huston, Sinqua Walls, Paula Patton, Connie Britton, and Sacha Baron Cohen, PAST FORWARD is a singular collaboration between two creative minds. “Miuccia Prada challenged me to make a work of cinema, like a dream, fuelledby strange mystery, suspense, fear, danger, beauty, conflict, romance, love, identity, and time,” Russell remarks. “Here was the opportunity to make a journey guided by layers of movie memories, life images and emotions, with no aim except to create art as if it were a painting or a sculpture free from normal narrative or audience expectations. The cast and I worked simply for the joy of making art.” PAST FORWARD is designed for display in multiple environments: cinema, gallery installation, social media, and online distribution.

Fragments of the film were incorporated into the set of the fashion show space during the SS2017 collection presentation this past month. That installation was glimpsed in real time on Instagram Stories. Prada revealed PAST FORWARD at the new Hauser Wirth & Schimmel Gallery in Los Angeles on November 15th. The following day the film wassimultaneously screened for select audiences in Tokyo, London, Beijing, Moscow, Istanbul, Berlin, Milan, Paris, New York, and Sydney (the latter on Nov. 17).

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