A series of folios presenting design research by staff at The Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL
Déjà vu: Restaging Resnais’s Last Year at Marienbad : Penelope Haralambidou;
Déjà vu: Restaging Resnais’s Last Year at Marienbad
by Penelope Haralambidou

The artefact, Déjà vu: Restaging Resnais's Last Year at Marienbad, is a critical reading of Alain Resnais's 1961 film Last Year at Marienbad, based on Alain Robbe-Grillet's screenplay. This large architectural model interprets the physical and psychological spaces in the film, and incorporates a digital animation projected onto the model. The artefact was presented at Speculative Models, a two-person exhibition at London Gallery West, in 2009.

Déjà vu is an abstract paper model of the Baroque hotel in which the film is set; a selection of digitally reworked scenes are projected on the model, thus 'redrawing' the film in light. The three-dimensional arrangement of the hotel 'rooms', made from drawn, cut and folded paper, breaks the flatness of the single screen and the linearity of the film. Its simplicity reflects the screenplay's elliptical storyline in contrast to the ornate setting. Placed on a table and dressed with the luminous imagery of the film, the model allows the viewer to circulate around and behind it and occupy this expansion of the picture plane at an intimate level.