A New York Times report on a massive cinematic installation by Russian film director Ilya Khrzhanovsky inspired by the life of Nobel Prize winning theoretical physicist Lev Landau grabbed our attention. With 13 feature-length films, performance and much else, it’s about to open in Paris, a police permit pending.

After the premiere season of DAU — a 24 hours a day, seven days a week multiple theatre experience of 13 feature-length films, video streaming, talks and performances — was postponed in Berlin, the Paris opening has been cancelled this week pending the granting of a police permit. Will it go ahead, let alone go to London in April?

DAU, the creation of Russian film director Ilya Khrzhanovsky, was originally planned to be a large-scale film about the life of Nobel Prize winning theoretical physicist and free love exponent Lev Landau. 700 hours of film was initially shot in the Ukraine in 2009-11 on a massive live-in set — a very realistic version of a 1950s theoretical physics institute in which the performers precisely lived out their roles, apparently without scripts. The film features one professional actor, hundreds of non-professionals and thousands of extras plus celebrities from a range of fields including Marina Abramovic, Peter Sellars, Romeo Castellucci, theoretical physicists David Gross and Carlo Rovelli and, as Landau, one of Europe’s leading young conductors, Teodor Currentzis. The installation includes its 13 feature length films, personalised interactive additional story lines and performers living out Soviet-era lifestyles.

The sheer scale of the work as described is breathtaking, let alone the magnitude of its evolution as revealed in the London Review of Books by novelist James Meek. We’re waiting for DAU!

Discover more about DAU on the project’s website.

Top image credit: Still from DAU