THE CHEMIST OF THE LUMIERE
Pedro García Martín
XII Award of novel «Ciudad de Salamanca» 2007.
The culture of the Belle Époque idolized images hunters. Painters, photographers, and film-makers were considered the notaries of the hapiness of the bourgeois way of life. The Lumiéres family will personify this social archetype. First, they discover the snapshot. They set life in impressions. Afterwards, they find the way to reproduce images in movement: the magic of the cinema has arrived.
In this frenzy of inventions, their employee Jan Flandrin will visit the father of the impressionism, Claude Monet, in pursuit of colour answers. The loving sorrows of the Lumiére’s chemist, the police snares in Paris at the end of the century, and the dialogue between painting and cinema shape a plot which culminates in the conquest of the colour photography.
A fleeting mirage. Because, at that time, the optimism of happy years will be buried in the trenchs of the Big War. However, from that moment on, the memory will be read in images.