Julian Rosefeldt for Manifesto

The actress assumes some uncharacteristic personas as part of an art exhibition in her native Australia.

Ellin Stein
Nov 27, 2015 @ 7:30 pm

We've seen Cate Blanchett as a queen, a (Noldorin) princess, a neurotic socialite, a slightly less neurotic socialite, two investigative reporters, a textile heiress, and Katharine Hepburn, but rarely anything as funky as a goth rock chick, let alone a homeless man (at bottom).

But that's how she appears on the cover of leading German art magazine Monopol, along with two other portraits showing her as a perky newscaster (at top) and a scary ballet teacher, complete with turban (below).

Julian Rosefeldt for Manifesto

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The portraits are stills from four videos created by Berlin-based artist Julian Rosefeldt, teasers for an art project called Manifesto, which will open at the Australian Centre for the Moving Image in Blanchett's native Melbourne on December 9.

Nine more videos show Blanchett portraying other characters, including a puppeteer, a school teacher, and a factory worker. In monologues, they express the thoughts and philosophies of a variety of artists—including painters, architects, dancers, and filmmakers—from different historical periods, as well as the manifestos of art movements such as the Futurists and Dadaists.

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According to Rosefeldt, Blanchett "admirably retained her very special sense of humor," despite having to use 12 different accents and work on a tight, two-week shooting schedule. The star's chameleon-like ability to completely change her look recalls another cinema-influenced art project, Cindy Sherman's celebrated Untitled Film Stills (Madonna is such a fan she sponsored an exhibition of the complete photo series at New York's Museum of Modern Art in 1995).

Julian Rosefeldt for Manifesto
Julian Rosefeldt for Manifesto

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