Film still of the film Belle de nuit - Grisélidis Réal,  Self Portraits, directed by Marie-Eve de Grave, Visions du Réel 2016

Belle de nuit – Grisélidis Réal, Self Portraits

Belle de nuit - Grisélidis Réal, autoportraits

Marie-Eve de Grave
Belgium | 2016 | 73 min
World premiere
Language : French
Subtitle : English

The portrait of Grisélidis Réal, a key figure in Geneva’s recent history, is sketched out between Switzerland where an unusual life path bloomed and ended, a brothel and prison in Munich, the militant fight in Paris or life in Alexandria. Asserting herself in the 1970s as one of the leaders of the “Prostitutes’ Revolution” in Paris in order to defend the perspective of prostitution as a choice, she expanded on this position in her writing: “Prostitution is a revolutionary act.” (GR). A humanist science above all, for a passionate and free woman, profoundly feminist in an equally personal and individual manner. Built on very rich archives, an account with a breath of fiction, transported by remarkable editing and by a contemporary heroine’s lust for life: “He who has never really loved should throw this book in the dustbin. The rubbish will be a warmer and softer place than his hands.” (GR). There remains her epitaph, a manifesto for the triumph of will: “Grisélidis Réal, Writer – Painter – Prostitute.”

Emilie Bujès


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