French film director Agnes Varda, who emerged in the New Wave of intimate cinema of the 1960s and continued with artful documentaries and films mixing real-life events with fiction, has died aged 90, her family said on Friday.
“The director and artist Agnes Varda died at her home on the night of Thursday, March 29, of complications from cancer. She was surrounded by her family and friends,” the family said in a statement.
Varda, a legendary figure in the cinema industry who was easily recognizable for her bowl-cut bob, had worked up to the end, with a new autobiographical documentary premiering at the Berlin film festival last month.
Also a noted photographer, screenplay writer, actress and visual artist, Varda first came to prominence with her 1962 movie “Cleo from 5 to 7”.
Born on May 30, 1928, Varda often used her own life as the framework for her work, which brought her an honorary Palme d’Or at the Cannes film festival in 2015 — the first female to win the coveted award.
“Her work and her life are infused with the spirit of freedom, the art of driving back boundaries, a fierce determination and a conviction that brooks no obstacles. Simply put, Varda seems capable of accomplishing everything she wants,” the Cannes festival said at the time.
Photo: Agnes Varda, easily recognizable for her bowl-cut bob, worked up to the end, with an autobiographical documentary premiering in Berlin last month