This film is from the DVD "Follow the artist" where 100 personalities each evoke a work exhibited at the Musée national d’art moderne du Centre Pompidou.
© Cinétévé – Centre Pompidou, 2004 / Distribution : Editions Montparnasse
Agnès Varda: "I chose this painting by Yves Klein; I love it, I like it. I always feel that I have a close relationship, and yet I didn't know Yves Klein but I admire him, I have always admired him because he has done something very extraordinary, it's innovative, it's cheeky. Then he asked the question of the act of painting. It happened in a gallery, in 1960. He had summoned his models; he called them "living paintbrushes", so they were painted up to their thighs, with this blue that he had invented, and then they were placed against the canvas or the paper, and this idea of the body with this shape between the thighs and the bust, the pubic hair, it puts the painting in a carnal relationship with the spectators.
And at the same time, it's something that gœs back to very, very old customs, long before civilization, in the caves, there were traces, there were footprints, there were handprints.
The notion of traces and fingerprints is an act that touches me, and I have an admiration, a tenderness for this painter. He died young, too, so obviously that makes him a hero.
(Source DVD "Suivez l'artiste", Musée national d'art moderne du Centre Pompidou, 2004)