Agnès Varda, the director best known as a key figure in the French new wave has died at the age of 90. The news was confirmed by Agence France Presse.
Her family said in a statement, “The director and artist Agnès Varda died at her home on the night of Thursday, March 29, of complications from cancer. She was surrounded by her family and friends.”
Varda became the oldest ever Oscar nominee for Faces Places, earned legions of new admirers after she sent a cardboard cutout to the Oscar nominees lunch.
Her films and photographs focus on documentary realism, feminist issues, and social commentary with a well-defined experimental style.
She gave most of her working life in France. Varda was born on 30 May 1928 in Brussels. She was the third of five children. She studied art history and photography. Varda began her career as a still photographer before becoming one of the major voices of the Left Bank Cinema and the French New Wave.
While working as a photographer, Varda became interested in making a film. She is considered the grandmother and the mother of the French New Wave. La Pointe Courte is unofficially but widely considered to be the first film of the movement.
Varda was married once, to Demy, from 1962 to 1990. Their son Mathieu is a film-maker. Rosalie was the child of Varda’s earlier relationship with director Antoine Bourseiller.