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Sculpting in Time

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Andrey Tarkovsky, the genius of modern Russian cinema--hailed by Ingmar Bergman as "the most important director of our time"--died an exile in Paris in December 1986. In Sculpting in Time, he has left his artistic testament, a remarkable revelation of both his life and work. Since Ivan's Childhood won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival in 1962, the visionary quality and totally original and haunting imagery of Tarkovsky's films have captivated serious movie audiences all over the world, who see in his work a continuation of the great literary traditions of nineteenth-century Russia. Many critics have tried to interpret his intensely personal vision, but he himself always remained inaccessible.

In Sculpting in Time, Tarkovsky sets down his thoughts and his memories, revealing for the first time the original inspirations for his extraordinary films--Ivan's Childhood, Andrey Rublyov, Solaris, The Mirror, Stalker, Nostalgia, and The Sacrifice. He discusses their history and his methods of work, he explores the many problems of visual creativity, and he sets forth the deeply autobiographical content of part of his oeuvre--most fascinatingly in The Mirror and Nostalgia. The closing chapter on The Sacrifice, dictated in the last weeks of Tarkovsky's life, makes the book essential reading for those who already know or who are just discovering his magnificent work.

254 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 1984

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About the author

Andrei Tarkovsky

33 books691 followers
Andrei Arsenyevich Tarkovsky (Russian: Андрей Арсеньевич Тарковский) was a Soviet film director, writer and opera director. Tarkovksy is listed among the 100 most critically acclaimed filmmakers. He attained critical acclaim for directing such films as Andrei Rublev, Solaris and Stalker.

Tarkovsky also worked extensively as a screenwriter, film editor, film theorist, and theater director. He directed most of his films in the Soviet Union, with the exception of his last two films which were produced in Italy and Sweden. His films are characterized by Christian spirituality and metaphysical themes, extremely long takes, lack of conventional dramatic structure and plot, and memorable images of exceptional beauty.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 396 reviews
Profile Image for Pavel.
216 reviews110 followers
April 14, 2014
The greatest director and very bad methodologist. He is the only one, there is no one like him and every one who tried to follow his method suffered different kinds of failure. I personally acquainted with people whose whole life collapsed under Tarkovsky's colossus. The scale of his talent and its main feature: ability to erect his own personal life experiences to the scale of something universal, attracts a lot of young filmmakers and they all end up destroying their own talent, just because of that - it is impossible to repeat what Tarkovsky did on screen. To make an impossible thing a life goal... just very unproductive, but he speaks so conclusively and lofty in this book, it even leaves you with feeling, that if you want to be a good director you just don't have another way then follow his method...
And the main idea is that cinema mainly works with time, not action or characters, that it records it in a way, which no other art can come near. If it is true or false I have no idea (although I would say that theatre is operating with time way more - you observe a continuous show, living its three hours with its characters, when cinema always skips and shuffles and shortens time), but It worked for Tarkovsky demonstratively.
Profile Image for Grant.
65 reviews16 followers
February 10, 2012
I will expound developments I made while reading the great Russian director Andrei Tarkovsky’s poetic accounts, and they will collectively be an indirect review in the process...

After reading Tarkovsky’s autobiography, I can’t help but feel utterly overwhelmed, disturbed, and changed in some profound way. My own considerations and world views have been upturned. Parts of Sculpting in Time were so engrossing and beautifully told (even penetrating the sometimes overly literal translation of Kitty Hunter-Blair) that I couldn’t contain my sense of inner delight, and I’d spontaneously release these monosyllabic mutters. That is how Tarkovsky is defined; his poetry is jaw-droppingly affective through any language. And that should be obvious if you’ve ever seen his films.

Science and technology are stifling our humanity and closing us off from one another, somehow paradoxically. Consider the interconnectivity of the Internet and its possibilities contrasted with its current predominant uses. Then, look at the burgeoning medical sciences, which are viewed as panaceas that are supposed to prolong life, but the field can’t regard the inner concept of life itself. They function to enhance life by the sheer extension of it. Tarkovsky, instead, urges a return to spiritual, artistic pursuits in opposition to this emerging, seething, immoral reality. Initially, it seemed regressive to me, but it is in fact a promotion of total emotional availability. His optimism transmits a world of the past, a reflection of tranquil personal belief in beauty. We’ve been conditioned to believe the immediate, the believable, the rational order of events and nature in exhaustive contemporary life, rejecting the extraordinary and the magical, because they don’t fall in alignment with natural orders and therefore allow proliferation of myth. In generalized terms, it’s unacceptable to dwell in the beauty of dreams; they are instead crushed and transformed into the ordinary so-called “realism.” In place of intuitive creativity, modern society gives rise to these approximate outlets - fantastical universes of sorcery and make-believe (sometimes, sadly, physically reenacted like LARP) - that do little more than superficially entertain and obscure our actual human identities. (As a gamer, I recognize the air of speciousness, but the games I play do engage me artistically and philosophically).

After the most difficult period of my life in the last twenty-six years, I recognize that I once considered our formal higher education system to be righteous. I encouraged the pursuit of it another person’s life in both direct and indirect ways, and I suffered the consequences. This is because, as a culture, we do not properly prepare people spiritually, morally, and emotionally in these institutions. The development of these concepts is ordered and confined to the home, church, synagogue, place of worship. It’s common belief that they must be separate, and not only are they detached, but they have also been corrupted. The family unit is in disarray. Organized religion merely tells stories, promotes sexism, and transforms personal responsibility into conformism. To return, there’s a strange coldness, lack of understanding, and finality in a person so utterly concentrated on higher education. Focus on strict memorization of information gives birth to false sense of superiority and undeniable mockery. Regurgitating information without personal interpretation is inhumane. I’ve seen it happen repeatedly even within myself. From post-modernism and post-irony, scholars have this gravitational pull to supreme condescension for any and all things through relentless sarcasm and Internet memes. It’s ironically vapid. These are people too lazy to comprehend or recognize their own emotional boundaries and the range of human emotion, so they attempt to distance or elevate themselves from their own reality creating viral, self-generating elitist drivel. (Philip K. Dick called these people ‘androids’ for their inability to sincerely empathize – “the battle between the authentic human being and the automotive reflex machine”). All of these foci are purely earthly, telluric, and profane; they fail at satire and make no serious attempt to propose self-reflection or more enlightened analyses. It’s outright rudeness and disdain for the capacity of the human condition, because these people have no understanding of it. (The “We're better than you, because we can criticize without offering solutions” attitude isn't very moral, now is it?) And they don’t care either, because it doesn’t fit into their narrow view of superior conquests. Over the past six months, I personally drew these associations and tried to express them verbally or textually in journals, sometimes on the verge of self-destruction. While I may have failed in this review, at least I have made an effort to connect to my own humaneness. When you realize utter rationality severs emotional possibilities, you might stop to think about your behavior. Sadly, it doesn’t surprise me that I am ignored by people who are emotionally stunted and think that sheer mockery is a hipster lifestyle and a sustainable culture, whether they were instilled with these deflective measures by their parents or peers, it arose out of cowardice to understand human purpose, or it’s an innate attribute of people with the supposed inability to form loving relationships. I really don’t know, and it’s not like these people will ever offer sensible sincerity and give me the time of day to find out.

We must recognize that man (and woman) needs art just as he/she needs food, water, shelter, clothes, and a binding relationship. I literally believe, as Tarkovsky does, it’s as important as those typically regarded fundamental needs. By its nature, creation of art is a therapy, a way to pursue ideals that inevitably clash with rampant, suppressive conformism in society. Art is born of human identity (though Tarkovsky would say, “Art is born out of an ill-designed world,” and he’d also be correct). Art is a pure sense of the transcendent; for those that can’t understand that – those who think art can exclusively function as an inside joke or in a reverse meta-pulp way (the stigma of “so bad it’s good”) – miss the point. Art and entertainment are two different things, and that’s my fundamental criticism with “artists” who don’t take themselves seriously. If you’re just creating jokes, you’re an entertainer. You exist for yourself only, to snicker at your own perceived ingenuity. It’s one thing to reserve self-criticism and sense of humor about one’s faults as a coping mechanism and another entirely to exploit other people for suckers by producing work that appeals to inherent intrigue for something people don’t understand. (The fact is, there’s next to nothing to understand). Modern art is more aligned with earthly trivialities when it should be seeking transcendence. It lacks the ability to tap into humanity, and it’s unmemorable, because it’s gaudy, decorated kitsch. The intelligent, artistically attuned people (not phony misguided artists), regardless of formal education or what have you, have a fundamental need to assimilate themselves into the spectrum. Anyone can appreciate art if they are provided with resonant images – they will form the necessary relationships and want to talk about their emotional responses. Instead, there is a growing movement of simplistic perversion as a means of meaningful subversion (like the difference between David Cronenberg and Eli Roth, for example). These entertainers are shock artists and want us to pay attention to them. That’s it. They have nothing to say about human experience, only human reflex. A temporary jolt is not the same as a core disturbance. It requires no emotional consideration and can be dismissed until the next perverse thing comes along.

Tarkovsky writes about modern man’s uncaring attitude about his spiritual wellbeing. This essentially recalls the previous discussion of science and technology. Spiritual wellbeing is the wellbeing of all – a consciousness that considers others over material possessions and competitive pop cultural pasquinade. The latter is hopeless. It still surprises me how Tarkovsky’s words have allowed me to realize my own criticism of humanity. Yes, I am distanced and somewhat unsympathetic because of personal experiences, because I’ve been treated like more of an object than a person and a default acquaintance than a responsive friend. I need to share my enthusiasm for communal aspects of art regardless of whether people respond or not, and this is a manner of rediscovering humanity instead of harboring malice. I recognize that people are too easy on themselves, but I should focus on the issue that lay beyond that. I should be combating the widespread acquiescence pushed by corporate spokesmen, who wish to guide society’s every interest in total complacency. Who out there still loves to dig through a random bin of albums at their local record store? Instead of mining our past, we can’t even relish in the present moment, so it’s skipped like a less immediately absorbing track on a CD. Modern culture doesn’t want us to examine our distant reflections but automatically consume what’s in front of our faces like machines.

My increasing affinity for wordless music, narration-less films has been further developed by Tarkovsky’s book. I wish to appreciate the emphasis on the inherent quality/focus of the art form itself. Cinema is visual motion, so therefore it should command those themes instead of falling back upon preexisting painterly or literary qualities. Of course literature and paintings can be referenced in film (as Tarkovsky always did), but they must be contextualized in a poetic manner that can only be realized in cinema. Otherwise, we should be seeking the essence of that physically manifested art. I mentioned the hindrance of narration in a recent review of Béla Tarr’s Turin Horse film, and that may just be personal preference, but I really dislike the establishment of events with words in cinema. It’s unimaginative. Cinema needs to set its own standards and be judged by its ability to authentically create a universe. After reading Sculpting in Time, I just feel like I have endless pages of memoirs to fill myself. None of it would be half as interesting or complete as Tarkovsky’s expressions, but they would at least strive for artistic philosophical realization. To fail at that is better than to succeed or realize something impure, wholly rational, devoid of emotion, mechanical. Humanity is not a collection of people; it's a quality. It is asking yourself how and why you did or did not respond to something. For a moment during the closing pages, I possessed the eventual goal of donating most everything I own, grabbing a couple interested people, and moving to the middle of nowhere in Northern Washington to be surrounded by a limitless beauty. The modern world is stifling our creativity, our patience, our values, and Tarkovsky knew it. My friend Dan who’s said that civilization will eventually return to its purist, simplest forms, knows it, too. Of course, his pessimistic words do not carry the same weight as Tarkovsky’s – they are the cynical toll to the Russian director’s ringing hope for humanity. But the destination is the same.
Profile Image for الخنساء.
318 reviews702 followers
November 24, 2014
معالجته للزمن مُبهرة للغاية، شاهدت فلم المرآة دون أي خلفية مسبقة عنه، ظللت مشدودة من أول دقيقة حتى النهاية، كان الإحساس ما بعد الفلم مؤثر وممتد، تصويره للذكريات يشبه طريقة تذكرنا لها، بعشوائية، وعدم انتظام، وبتفاصيل دقيقة وتفاصيل مغيبة، كل ماشاهدت من أفلام في كفة وفلم المرآة في كفة، أفضل وصف يطلق عليه هو النحت في الزمن ..
قرأت كتابه و وجدت أن للمخرج وجهة نظر خاصة وفلسفة تجاه الفن والحياة، تاركوفسكي يرى الفن روحاني ومهمته هي التطهير، العالم الداخلي بكثافته وتعقيده هو مايحاول إبرازه في أفلامه ولذا يبدو العالم الخارجي في أفلامه مجرد مؤثر على العالم الداخلي لكنه ليس محوراً للفلم
كما ذكر متأثر بديستوفسكي وشخصياته المتأزمة روحياً ويراها معضلة إنسانية حديثة يسعى لعرضها في فنه
لا يحب الأبطال ولا القصص الخارقة، ولا الواقع الغريب، السينما لديه ليست للتسلية والمتعة، مهتم هو بالحياة العادية، أحاسيس البشر العاديين، الأزمات الطبيعية الداخلية للناس، يرفض الرمزية في الفن ويميل للوضوح والبساطة كما يراها وحسب تعبيره عنها بالطبع
ربما من الأفضل مشاهدة فلميه طفولة ايفان والمرآة قبل قراءة الكتاب
Profile Image for Steven  Godin.
2,379 reviews2,255 followers
April 4, 2020

"I love cinema. There is still a lot that I don't know: what I am going to work on, what shall I do later, how everything will turn out, whether my work will actually correspond to the principles to which I now adhere, to the system of working hypotheses I put forward. There are too many temptations on every side: stereotypes, preconceptions, commonplaces, artistic ideas other than one's own. And really it's so easy to shoot a scene beautifully, for effect, for acclaim . . . But you only have to take one step in that direction and you are lost.
Cinema should be a means of exploring the most complex problems of our time, as vital as those which for centuries have been the subject of literature, music, and painting. It is only a question of searching, each time searching out afresh the path, the channel, to be followed by cinema. I am convinced that for any one of us our film-making will turn out to be a fruitless and hopeless affair if we fail to grasp precisely and unequivocally the specific character of cinema, and if we fail to find in ourselves our own key to it"
Profile Image for Alexa.
89 reviews13 followers
August 27, 2009
"I see it as my duty to stimulate reflection on what is essentially human and eternal in each individual soul, and which all too often a person will pass by, even though his fate lies in his hands. He is too busy chasing after phantoms and bowing down to idols. In the end everything can be reduced to the one simple element which is all a person can count upon in his existence: the capacity to love. That element can grow within the soul to become the supreme factor which determines the meaning of a person's life. My function is to make whoever sees my films aware of his need to love and to give his love, and aware that beauty is summoning him."
Profile Image for زينب مرهون.
159 reviews30 followers
July 12, 2017
من الكتب الرائعة التي أنهيتها مؤخراً و الذي يتحدث فيه الكاتب عن الفن و حاجتنا الضرورية له.
السينما في رأي تاركوفسكي ليست متعة و مشاهدة عابرة..
السينما هي غذاء بصري و روحي مثله مثل الكاتب و الرسام و الشاعر الذي يصرفون جل وقتهم في الكتابة والرسم، مستعرضين رؤاهم بين الذاكرة و الواقع و بين المعاناة و العدالة و بين الحب و الجمال بمونولوج يلامس القارئ أو متذوقي الفن..
تاركوفسكي يكتب هنا عن جوهر آراءه في اتجاه السينما و الفن و الأدب و كيف هذا الصرح الضخم متصلاً بالواقع وقريب منا..
يقول تاركوفسكي: " الفن رمز الكون "..
الرمز الإبداعي الذي وهبه الخالق لنا بدرجات متفاوتة مترجمين فيه عن كل التعبيرات أو الرموز التي ترشدنا فيما يقوله هذا العالم، والذي يسبر في كوننا وعوالمنا الداخلية، مرتفعين إلى أسمى درجات السمو و الوعي..
( هذا الكتاب لا توصي به أو تهديه إلا لشخص عظيم، شخص يحب الفن ويقدّره. )
Profile Image for  amapola.
282 reviews32 followers
October 15, 2020
Uno sguardo umano, un divino nascosto

“Il film, quando non è un documentario, è un sogno. E’ per questo che Tarkovskij è il più grande di tutti”.
(Ingmar Bergman)


“Mi hanno sovente domandato cos'è la Zona, che cosa simboleggia, ed hanno avanzato le interpretazioni più impensabili. Io cado in uno stato di rabbia e di disperazione quando sento domande del genere. La Zona è la Zona, la Zona è la vita: attraversandola l'uomo o si spezza o resiste. Se l'uomo resisterà dipende dal suo sentimento della propria dignità, dalla sua capacità di distinguere il fondamentale dal passeggero”.
(Andrej Tarkovskij su "Stalker")

Due geni a confronto:

Profile Image for María Carpio.
176 reviews46 followers
October 31, 2022
Cada vez que usted vea en el cine -aunque cada vez es más escaso- un plano fijo larguísimo, en el que parece que no pasara nada, es Tarkovski. Puede ser un Tarkovski deformado, pero es él. Él es el hombre que esculpió en el tiempo. Es la mejor definición de su cine dada por él mismo, y que da título a este libro. Una gran influencia para muchos cineastas que quisieron seguir/copiar su estilo. Aún recuerdo siendo una estudiante universitaria, la mística alrededor de Tarkovski. Seguía siendo un outsider ya a finales de los noventa y entrado en los dosmiles. Ver sus películas era una especie de ritual para pocos, pero, a la vez, para algunos no era más que un snobismo trasnochado. Los Bergmans, Antonionis, Buñeles y Bressones estaban en ese punto de quiebre que marcaba el nuevo milenio, y que empezaba a darle una fuerza irreductible a la entrada de las nuevas tecnologías, llámese la revolución de lo digital. Entonces, todo aquello con un ritmo análogo y con intención de "el arte por el arte"parecía entrar al terreno de lo caduco, para algunos enfrascados en la novedad y el ritmo cada vez más acelerado de los tiempos.

Pero ahí estaba Tarkovski con su Espejo, con su Stalker, con su Sacrificio, y ahí estaba yo, luchando contra ese tiempo extenuante para intentar ver aquello que él veía en el arte. En pequeñas salas de cine o funciones improvisadas incluso en monitores de TV, funciones a las que no acudía nadie. Esto debido en gran parte al contexto cultural del país en el que estoy. Pero todo esto puede parecer una labia innecesaria que nada tiene que ver con el libro que reseño aquí, sin embargo, tiene mucho que ver.

La experiencia del espectador para Tarkovski lo era todo, o casi todo. Y en este libro lo explica. Él no quería imbuir de sentido fijo a sus películas, creía que eso era una especie de trampa, el crear sentidos basados en la configuración del símbolo (a través de la yuxtaposición de imágenes), sino más bien apelaba a la imagen en limpio, para que sea el espectador quien la dotase de sentido. Es por ello que le huía al manierismo del cine y su estructura clásica, y de aquello que él mismo aprendió en la escuela de cine soviética, yéndose incluso en contra de las enseñanzas del propio Eisenstein, famoso cineasta soviético creador de la teoría del montaje (justamente la búsqueda del símbolo). Tarkovski, por el contrario, explica en este libro que en su cine no hay un solo símbolo, sino que más bien sus películas están más cercanas al acto poético, a la fuerza de la imagen per se, y a el cómo esa imagen se trabaja en un tiempo específico, el tiempo interno de la escena. Eso para Tarkovski es el ritmo, y lo que define al cine y lo diferencia del resto de las artes: el tiempo. El cine es un arte del tiempo.

Para el cineasta, lo que define el montaje ya lo contiene cada escena rodada. El tiempo que transcurre en cada una de ellas determina el tiempo general de la estructura total de escenas en el montaje. Si ambos tiempos no coinciden, la película no funcionará. Esto lo ilustra con una película de Eisenstein, en la que éste quiso reproducir el propio tiempo dinámico de una batalla, pero lo hizo cortando escenas y editándolas una tras otra con velocidad. Según Tarkovski, ello es un fallo, ya que no dejó que cada escena contenga en sí misma el ritmo de la batalla y lo que hizo resultó artificioso y sin sentido. Para él, la escena debe rodarse ya con la intención del montaje y no buscarlo después, más bien, debe hallarse el espíritu de la escena.

Por otro lado, otro error que Tarkovski considera en el cine, es el intento de hacer literatura. Para él, el cine no tiene nada que ver con ésta, a diferencia del teatro que sí es cercano a la literatura porque sus diálogos son lo más importante en la dramaturgia y estos pueden ser completamente literarios. Mientras que, según T. en el cine son apenas un elemento más, por lo que, a su criterio, si se trata de hacer literatura con diálogos en el cine, se está errando nuevamente. Lo mismo con la actuación. En el teatro el actor debe entender racional y esquemáticamente a su personaje porque esa es la base de su construcción, en el cine no. T. estaría más cerca de la idea del "actor natural" que al del actor que profundiza en su personaje a través de la técnica. Por eso, también rechaza el método de Stanislavski y prefiere que el actor no sepa nada del derrotero de su personaje, tal como una persona sabe nada sobre el futuro y lo que acontecerá en su propia vida. Esa incertidumbre de la realidad es la que busca reproducir Tarkovski en su cine.

Ese apego a reproducir la realidad pero a través de la poética de la imagen que también rechaza la pirotecnia, el artificio, el símbolo y la interpretación unívoca propuesta por el director, busca un impresionismo cinematográfico en el que incluso el color resulta un problema, ya que para la época, el trabajo con el color en el cine aún no llegaba a un nivel técnico óptimo y seguía resaltando como una estética incontrolable por encima del fondo y la profundidad del sentido de la imagen. Por ello Tarkovski proponía el uso de colores apagados y neutros, e incluso, asegura que el blanco y negro es la representación de la realidad más fiel, pues anula la necesidad del escoger un color por encima de otro y de darle un sentido a la gama de colores que en la vida real no existe porque es fortuita.

Por otro lado, este libro es una especie de compendio de su experiencia como director en la creación de sus películas, escrito no linealmente, en un largo espacio de tiempo. Por estas páginas corren sus reflexiones y decisiones profesionales en películas como La infancia de Iván, Solaris, Stalker, El espejo (la más íntima de sus películas, ya que trata sobre sus recuerdos de niñez y juventud), Nostalgia (en la que se mezcla su propia experiencia de nostalgia, pues cuando la rodó, ya había salido de la URSS) y Sacrificio, en la que se da un hecho insólito, cuya explicación gráfica engloba el summum de su pensamiento, aunque no ahonda mucho más y lo deja sujeto a interpretación. Tal como en sus películas.

El hecho referido es el siguiente: Su actor fetiche, Anatoli Solonitsin, con quien trabajó en casi todas sus películas, murió de cáncer, y a él mismo le dará cáncer después. Tal como el protagonista de Sacrificio, un hombre que tiene cáncer y para recobrar su salud hace un pacto con una bruja. Para Tarkovski, este acto poético es una anticipación a la realidad que solo puede ser explicado a través de la cualidad mistérica del arte. Esto lo sella con una cita de Pushkin en la que sentencia que "un artista verdadero es, en contra de su voluntad, un profeta". Está claro que su idea sobre el arte es algo que traspasa a la materia y al propio hombre.

Y respecto a ello, a lo material, al materialismo (visto desde la filosofía, y desde la cultura de masas y el consumismo), Tarkovski, que salió de la URSS en 1983, se sitúa en un espacio cuasi paria al criticar a ambos sistemas, aunque no los nombre. No nombra al Capitalismo y al Comunismo, pero sí habla de Occidente y su materialismo (lo cierto es que también critica a ese cine comprometido y político de la URSS con el que no quería tener nada que ver), y cree que la materia amenaza con devorar el espíritu del hombre. También equipara el avance de la tecnología con esa pérdida de espíritu (de ahí que esté relacionado con la introducción de este texto, en el que hablo de la entrada de la tecnología en los dosmiles, cosa que de alguna manera Tarkovski predijo, pese a que murió en los aún analógicos ochentas). Para Tarkovski el cine comercial no tiene valor alguno más que como fuente de generación de dinero y según su idea, el artista no está ahí por enriquecerse. Su visión del arte es totalizadora y metafísica (en el sentido no-místico, sino de trascendencia de lo humano): el arte es lo que salva al hombre de la pérdida de su espíritu. "Y por eso, quizá realmente consista el sentido de la existencia humana en la creación de obras de arte, en el acto artístico, ya que este no posee una meta y es desinteresado".

Y una de las más bellas metáforas que incluye en su última película Sacrificio (aunque una metáfora ya estaría fuera de sus preceptos cinematográficos, lo cierto es que también dice que los métodos y normas en el cine pueden ser establecidos para romperse, lo que hizo justamente en Sacrificio, película en la que se salió del mero impresionismo y tomó más herramientas de la dramaturgia tradicional): Un hombre sube un monte todos los días para regar un árbol seco. Un acto que podría parecer inútil termina dando la respuesta inesperada-esperada: el árbol retoña finalmente. Es la esperanza. Eso es el arte.
Profile Image for Kaśyap.
271 reviews123 followers
November 13, 2015
Andrei Tarkovsky has much in common with Dostoevsky in the sense that his movies move at a deliberate, slow pace with drawn out panning movements and long takes. They need extra effort from the viewer to appreciate them. His movies are much concerned with the "inner life" and the psychological truths of his characters.

In this book he shares his ideas on filmmaking. Gives us an insight into the rules and methods that Tarkovsky set for himself in making his movies. Not a technical treatise but more of a phenomenological work. His ideas on the nature and purpose of art, especially pertaining to cinema, and its importance for the spiritually poor, modern consumerist world that seems be on the self-destructive mode. Tarkovsky was especially drawn to Japanese Haikku which is the simple observation of the world around us, unclouded by preconceived notions and judgements. For him,the essential element of cinema is also observation, the experience of the world.
Profile Image for أحمد أبازيد Ahmad Abazed.
351 reviews2,030 followers
December 20, 2013
في كتابته كما في أفلامه , ثمّة امتزاج عضويّ و في غاية الاتساق ما بين الشعريّ و الفكريّ , ما بين الفنّ و الإيمان , وما بين الروح و الواقع .
تاركوفسكي يكتب آراءه حول السينما والأدب والفنّ , وأزمة الروح في عالم الأسواق و القوّة , كتاب ملهم و رهيف .
Profile Image for Bogdan Liviu.
285 reviews387 followers
March 3, 2017
"Toate filmele mele au vorbit într-un fel sau altul despre faptul că oamenii nu sunt singuri, aruncați într-un univers părăsit, că ei sunt legaţi de trecut şi de viitor prin nenumărate fire, că fiecare om, prin soarta lui, realizează legătura cu soarta universală a omenirii. Dar această speranță la rolul inteligent al fiecărei vieți în parte şi al fiecărei acțiuni omeneşti măreşte la nesfârşit responsabilitatea individului față de evoluția generală a vieții.
În lume, unde amenințarea războiului, capabil să distrugă umanitatea, este reală, unde dezastrele sociale uimesc prin amplitudine, iar suferințele omeneşti sunt strigătoare la cer, trebuie să căutăm drumul unul către celălalt. Aceasta este datoria sfântă a omenirii față de propriul viitor şi datoria fiecăruia în parte."
O carte la care voi reveni până voi muri.
Profile Image for Велислав Върбанов.
386 reviews29 followers
April 9, 2023
Андрей Тарковски е един от най-великите кинорежисьори в световната история! Неговите филми са изключително стойностни и красиви - точно обратното на стандартните и пропагандни съветски такива. За съжаление е създал твърде малко творби, заради тоталитарната цензура... Андрей е син на руския поет Арсений Тарковски, което обяснява това, че филмите му са също така чудесна визуална поезия. Като любител на научна фантастика, обожавам най-вече неговите „Сталкер“ и „Соларис“ (въпреки различията с книгите), но и останалите му филми силно ме впечатлиха! В „Уловеното време“ гениалният режисьор разказва честно и увлекателно, както и споделя доста ценни мисли - книгата определено ще допадне на всеки почитател на качественото кино!

„Ако има зрител, за когото е важно и плодотворно да води диалог именно с мен, какъв по-голям стимул да работя? Ако има зрители, които говорят с мен на един и същ език, защо да предам техните интереси заради друга, чужда и далечна ми група от хора? Те имат свои ,,богове и кумири“ и ние нямаме нищо общо с тях.
Художникът има само една възможност: да предложи на зрителя своята честност и искреност, когато се бори с материала. Зрителят ще разбере и ще оцени смисъла на нашите усилия.
Ако искаш да се харесаш на зрителя, ако приемаш некритично неговите вкусове, означава да не го уважаваш. Ние искаме само парите на този зрител и го възпитаваме не с високите образци в изкуството на художника, а само за да ни гарантира някакъв доход. Зрителят продължава да е доволен и да мисли, че е прав, но тази мисъл е твърде относителна. Ако не възпитаваме у зрителя способност да е критичен към собствените си разсъждения, ние в последна сметка сме напълно равнодушни към него...“
May 3, 2020
"Aparece como una revelación, como un deseo momentáneo y apasionado de comprender intuitivamente de golpe todas las leyes de este mundo
—su belleza y fealdad, su compasión y crueldad, su infinito y sus limitaciones."
—Andréi Tarkovsky; Esculpir en el tiempo.

Andréi Tarkovsky fue un poeta, escritor, actor y director de cine ruso en tiempos de la Unión Soviética y se convirtió en uno de los influyentes más grandes de la historia del cine, con tan solo haber filmado siete largometrajes a lo largo de toda su vida.

Cabe destacar que este poeta en el cine, fue llevado al exilio por su renuncia a acatar dogmas culturales y las limitaciones ideológicas de su país en ese entonces, por lo que se dedicó en esos lentos años de angustia a escribir su libro "Esculpir en el tiempo" donde explica detalladamente sus ideas acerca de, no solo creo yo, del séptimo arte, sino de sus inquietudes respecto a la vida misma.

Al comienzo de su libro expone una serie de cartas que el público le ha enviado en algunas ocasiones, condenándolo de hacer cintas inexplicables, y en otras, alabándolo por hacer cintas tan personales. Hacia el final del libro, el autor llega a la conclusión de que todo espectador es co-autor de la obra expuesta.

Tarkovsky a través de sus obras, nos hace entender que está al tanto de la intangibilidad del ser humano, el potencial que tiene para experiencias emocionales profundas que no se puede comprender a través de la lógica o la razón, pero que se puede sentir íntimamente.

Es en esto, tanto obvio como evasivo el aspecto de la condición humana, que Andréi vio algo trascendental; algo que solo se puede capturar por medio del arte.

Un libro tan íntimo y tan abierto...¿cómo un hombre pudo alcanzar tal madurez, tal ingenio y tanta sensibilidad? Creo que no tiene que ser leído necesariamente por aficionados, estudiosos del cine, sino creo es un libro que alcanza a todo al que se lo permita, como lo fue tan necesario para mi en estos tiempos.

Una obra maestra.
Profile Image for Fatima Alammar.
Author 1 book197 followers
September 24, 2012
يكتب تاركوفسكي تأملاته، أفكاره، ملاحظاته، نقده اللاذع، إشاداته العميقة، رؤاه المميزة التي هي خلاصة تجربة حافلة من إنجاز الأفلام. هو يشير بوضوح (لسنوات عديدة لم تكن سيرتي المهنية مثيرة للبهجة والغبطة، فالفترات الفاصلة بين الأفلام كانت طويلة وموجعة، ولهذا كان لدي الكثير من الوقت لأن أتأمل بدقة أهدافي الخاصة، وأدرس العوامل التي تميز السينما عن الفنون الأخرى).

يقدّس السينما بوصفها (فناً) أو شكلا ابداعيا، ويزدري السينما/السلعة ولا بد أن ينقل لك عدوى الكراهية لـ الأفلام التجارية، السطحية غالبا. يدافع عن آرائه بشراسة، لكن بلغة مرهفة وشاعرية وبأفكار خلاقة ومختلفة ..

هو نوعٌ من الكتب الذي قد تغيّر ذائقتك للأبد، أو تعمل على تحسين تلك الذائقة، أو إذا لم يتحقق أحدُ الأمرين، لا بد له أن يترك أثرا ما، سريّا ولذيذا.
Profile Image for Indre Savulione.
38 reviews12 followers
January 20, 2022
"... giliau suvokdamas savo laikmetį ir pasaulį, kuriame gyvena, menininkas tampa balsu tų, kurie nemoka suprasti ir negali išreikšti savo požiūrio į tikrovę."
Tai knyga kurią norėjau "taupyti", vis nejučia pasitikrindavau kiek puslapių liko. Užvertusi paskutinį puslapį lieku su begaliniu dėkingumu. Visų pirma už galimybę pamatyti išreikštą vaizdu žmogaus dvasią.
Profile Image for Clorisu.
20 reviews7 followers
June 2, 2017
For some reason I went into this thinking I'd get a book about his thoughts and information on his films but that ended up being about 20 pages total with the rest being pseudo philosophy and other musings. I'd only recommend this to people who are already fans of his filmography and not those who are interested in general film theory.

Alas, here are are what I took to be the noteworthy points raised in the book:
1. Tarkovsky believes that the director ought not try to satisfy the audience as this will only lead the them astray. They should direct by being aesthetically receptive and trying to recreate their subjective world like a poet (he means poet to mean a way of looking at the world) -- and he acknowledges some will be irked or disinterested by his inner world.
2. He is pro realism and anti symbolism in film. He believes the most impactful way to portray a situation is with the reality of events rather than obtuse metaphors.
3. He is against montage theory and believes that to be true to the essence of cinema is to leave everything formally within the frame and attempt to capture time in the film image the way that it exists in real life, thus making "rhythm" and not editing the main formative element of cinema.
4. He believes editing and assembly disturb the passage of time and gives it something new, thus distorting time can give it a rhythmical expression (Sculpting in time).
5. He evolved from planning the details of the scene to approaching it with a general idea due to reality being richer than imagination and allowing serendipity. He finds meticulous plans abstract and restricting on the imagination so one should merely approach the scene with an open mind.
6. He believes the actor shouldn't have any unconscious knowledge of how a scene will unfold but act naturally as if it were real by being given only the necessary information, and allows the actor to have autonomy without restricting their freedom of expression. He thinks a good actor isn't merely understandable but is truthful.
7. He thinks that genre film is mass culture trash and the only true form of cinema is art film.
8. Music used correctly goes beyond intensifying the image by paralleling it with the same idea -- done correctly it transfigures the image into something different in kind. Properly used, music has the ability to change the whole emotional tone of a filmed sequence.
9. The success of a film is not to be measured by sales as it depends on how it individually received with the dispositions of each viewer, some which will appreciate it completely and others who will find it alien.
10. He was never a fan of american style adventure movies and wanted to create inward attention rather than outward.
11. His films contain no metaphors (except a few exceptions). Ie. The zone is merely the zone, it's life, and the actualisation of man in finding the zone is the same process man goes through in life in discovering himself and coming to terms with his existence and grief.
June 10, 2013
"We all know the tradicional genre of ancient Japanese poetry, the haikku. [Sergei] Eisensteinquoted some examples:

'Coldly shining moon;
near the ancient monastery
a wolf is howling'

'Silent in the field
a butterfly was flying
then it fell asleep'

Eisenstein saw in these three line verses the model for how the combination of three separate elements creates something different in kind from any of them. Since this principle was already there in haikku, however, it is clearly not exclusive to cinema.

What attracts me in haikku is its observation of life - pure, subtle, one with its subject.

'As it passes by
the full moon barely touches
fishhooks in the waves'

'the dew has fallen,
on all the spikes of blackthorn
there hang little drops'

This is pure observation."

A. Tarkovsky in Sculpting the Time, p. 66.
Profile Image for Kamal Ziadah.
19 reviews15 followers
November 7, 2022
Andrey Tarkovsky's Sculpting In Time. One of the best books ever written about cinema by one of the greatest cinema directors of all .time In Sculpting In Time the visionary filmmaker and artist explains the seven art, his work, poetry and creativity
Profile Image for Ana.
805 reviews597 followers
September 25, 2016
I like movies. That being said, I'm not obsessed with movies. My field is literature, because writing is my happy medium of conveying thoughts and feelings. However, I bought this book for a friend of mine who is obsessed with both literature and movies, and who can appreciate it fully. I loved the book - Tarkovsky is a surprisingly good writer - and I took from it a lot with regards to movie making, the relatio ships between the director and the actors, the audience and transmitting enough information through an image so that the viewer understands the point. I would truly recommend this to anyone, if only to expand your general culture on interesting subjects.
Profile Image for Mary.
81 reviews
August 8, 2022
“My function is to make whoever sees my films aware of his need to love and to give his love, and aware that beauty is summoning him.”

Wow. This book. Tarkovsky is a genius and the rare humble kind of genius. He put so excellently into words things I feel I’ve always known had but no ability to articulate.
So much about art and film can me learned from this book and I loved the insight into his films.
Profile Image for Кремена Михайлова.
607 reviews179 followers
June 21, 2019
„За мен беше много важно да продължа в Носталгия темата аз „слабия човек“, който по външни белези не е боец, но според мен е победителят в този живот. Сталкера произнасяше монолог в защита на слабите, черта, която е истинска ценност и надежда в живота.“

„След като зрителите видяха Огледало, най-трудно беше да им обясня, че във филма няма никакъв друг скрит, зашифрован смисъл, освен желанието ми да кажа истината. Това често предизвикваше недоверие или дори разочарование. За някои това наистина не им беше достатъчно: те търсеха скрити символи, зашифрован смисъл, тайни. Мен това също ме разочароваше. Това беше опозиционната част от зрителите. А колегите яростно ми се нахвърлиха, като ме обвиниха, че не съм скромен, защото съм искал да направя филм за себе си.“

„Винаги ме е отвращавало преднамерено тенденциозното, идеологичното, което творецът внася в образната си система. Във всеки случай аз предпочитам похватите, които използва художникът, да са незабележими. И аз понякога много съжалявам за някои кадри, които съм оставил в собствените ми филми, сега ми се струва, че са били компромиси, появили се, защото не съм бил последователен.“

„Писах, че когато гледах материала, ме смая моето собствено състояние, пренесено на екрана, състоянието, в което снимах Носталгия: дълбоката, все по-мъчителна тъга далече от дома, далече от близките, пронизала всеки миг от съществуването ми. То се превръщаше във фатално, натрапчиво усещане на собствената ми зависимост от моето минало, като все по-непоносим недъг, чието име е Носталгия. Но все пак аз бих искал да предпазя читателя от пряко отъждествяване на автора с неговия лиричен герой, това би било прекалено директно. В творчеството е естествено да се използват непосредствените жизнени впечатления; за съжаление, ние не разполагаме с друг опит! Но даже заимстването на настроения и сюжети от собствения ти живот все пак най-често не дава повод за идентификация на художника с това, което той прави. Може това да разочарова някого, но лиричният опит на автора рядко съвпада с неговите битови постъпки в живота.“
Profile Image for Nuray.
26 reviews14 followers
March 13, 2016
"Hiçbir filmimde simge kullanmadım.'Bölge',bir 'bölge'işte.İnsanın kat etmek zorunda olduğu hayat,hepsi o kadar.İnsanın ya yok olduğu ya da dayandığı bu yerde ayakta kalmayı başarıp başaramayacağı kendine olan saygısıyla,önemliyi önemsizden ayırma yeteneğiyle belirlenir.
Her birimizin içinde olan o özgün insanilik ve ebedilik üzerinde düşünmeyi teşvik etmeyi görevim sayıyorum.Ne yazık ki bu sonsuzluk ve öz,insanın kendi yazgısını kendi elinde tutmasına karşın sık sık görmezden geliniyor.Birtakım aldatıcı idealler peşinde koşulması yeğleniyor.Ancak gene de geride insanın varlığını inşa ettiği ufacık bir kırıntı kalıyor:sevme yeteneği.İşte bu kırıntı insan ruhunda,hayatını belirleyecek bir yer işgal edebilir,varlığına anlam katabilir."

filmlerine geçmek için sabırsızlanıyorum tarkovsky
Profile Image for C.
398 reviews36 followers
August 7, 2022
Art affirms all that is best in man — hope, faith, love, beauty, prayer… What he dreams of and what he hopes for… When someone who doesn't know how to swim is thrown into the water, instinct tells his body what movements will save him. The artist, too, is driven by a kind of instinct, and his work furthers man's search for what is eternal, transcendent, divine — often in spite of the sinfulness of the poet himself. (p. 239)

Second reading, paired with a slow but steady march back through his films.

Prior review: Tarkovsky has done more to challenge and shape my thinking about cinema as art than has any other single director. I can’t recommend this book highly enough. Each and every chapter is a goldmine.
Profile Image for Lamia Al-Qahtani.
379 reviews575 followers
July 14, 2017
الشاعرية الواضحة في أفلام تاركوفسكي حتى سماه البعض "شاعر السينما" تتضح هنا في طريقة كتابته وتعامله مع الصورة والكاميرا ومفهوم الزمن الذي انعكس على عنوان الكتاب الرائع "النحت في الزمن".
أحب أفلام تاركوفسكي وشاهدتها جميعها قبل قراءة الكتاب الذي أعاد لي مشاهد هذه الأفلام يشرح فيها أفكاره وأسبابه لتصبح السينما فنا وليس تجارة تشبه الأفلام الأمريكية وطابع الحركة والمباشرة فيها، تاركوفسكي يريد السينما أن تخاطب الشخص وأحلامه وأفكاره ومخاوفه وليس مجرد فقرة ترفيهية مليئة بالحركات السريعة والإثارة الرخيصة. الكتاب أشبه بالكتاب الأدبي والخواطر الشعرية أكثر مما هو كتاب يتحدث عن صناعة السينما حتى يقول في نهاية الكتاب: أرى نفسي شاعرا وليس سينمائيا. الكتاب مزيج من الشعر والفن والثقافة والإيمان. رائع
Profile Image for Staulas Giorgos.
14 reviews7 followers
July 12, 2020
Μην το επιχειρήσετε εάν δεν σπουδάζετε κινηματογράφο, ακόμα περισσότερο εάν δεν έχετε δει τις ταινίες του
Profile Image for Radu Mureșan.
129 reviews7 followers
March 29, 2021
Unul dintre regizorii mei preferati (Villeneuve inca e #1), unul dintre cei mai constanti regizori cand vine vorba de calitatea filmelor (poate ca cel mai constant) si totusi, cartea nu e de 5/5... oare de ce. Cand o persoana vine si se crede mai presus decat toata lumea, ma cam deranjeaza. Desigur, inteleg ce vrea sa spuna si cateodata sunt de acord cu el ( sa fiu sincer, si eu am episoade de narcisism, dar imi revin destul de rapid... sper), dar in foarte multe pasaje se comporta ca si un copil caruia i s-a furat acadeaua si e frustrat pe societate. Era destul un capitol despre "regizor = Dumnezeu / audienta = prosti", dar nu s-a putut abtine sa nu se dea mare :)
Profile Image for Aivaras Žukauskas.
117 reviews11 followers
January 13, 2022
Nepaisant kai kurių tipinių paniurzgėjimų, stebėtinai asmeniškas didelio režisieriaus pokalbis su žiūrovu/skaitytoju, duodantis ne tik idėjų apie kiną teoriškai, tačiau ir žvilgsnį į paties Tarkovskio mąstymo procesus. Ko daugiau ir benorėti.
Profile Image for Adriana Scarpin.
1,384 reviews
July 21, 2016
Por que dei cinco estrelas para esse livro? Porque Tarkovski é tão arrebatador em sua visão de cinema transposta para a linguagem verbal quanto na concepção visual, você pode não concordar com nada do que ele diz, mas é linda a forma que o faz. Por isso lá no meio do livro eu fiquei tão emputecida, mas tão emputecida, que passei a esbravejar pela casa com um homem morto há 30 anos. O motivo? O total desmerecimento que ele faz do cinema de gênero e comercial em geral, claro, entendo o ponto de vista dele, mas também não vou passar em cima do meu e deixar de achar o Sergio Leone tão gênio quanto o Tarkovski, porque, caraleo, esses cineastas elitistas me fazem vomitar.
Enfim, passei uns dias sem pegar no livro por conta dessa "irritação" e pude me deleitar com a bela visão de sua alma, mesmo sendo tão diferente da minha concepção de vida e cinema.
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