Queen of Hearts: Audrey Flack

Directed by Deborah Shaffer, Rachel Reichman (Co-Director)
Film Movement
2019
75 Minutes
USA
English
Biography, Documentary

At 88 years-old, Audrey Flack holds a unique place in the history of contemporary art in America. Feminist, rebel, mother, painter, sculptor and teacher, Audrey’s often controversial 40-year career evolved from abstract expressionism in the 1950s to photorealism in the 1970s. One of the first women ever included in the famed Janson’s History of Art, Audrey continues to create, explore, and inspire with her unique style and indomitable spirit.

Queen of Hearts follows Flack as she takes her work in a brand new direction and reveals her long-term struggles as the mother of a child with autism. Flack has something deep and genuine to communicate to the world. She is a provocateur and a rebel, an example and an inspiration. Queen of Hearts is a moving portrait of an artist who is still testing, still experimenting, still searching.

Director & Cast

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Reviews

  • "The festival opened with an absolutely gorgeous documentary about the Photorealist painter and sculptor, Audrey Flack. Queen of Hearts: Audrey Flack enraptured the audience and earned a standing ovation. It is a beautifully done documentary of a life well-lived."
    Ronni Monsky, The Berkshire Eagle
  • "...what’s refreshing about Deborah Shaffer and Rachel Reichman‘s look is how intimate and personal it feels, grounding a remarkable woman in a very personable and extraordinary light. "
    Tynan Yanaga, Film Inquiry
  • "...she has been an incredible photorealist, armed with a convincing spray brush. Now, the artist finally gets her due in this documentary about her life."
    Nadja Sayej, Forbes
  • "...the best thing I can say about QUEEN OF HEARTS is simply just see it. It is a wonderful portrait of a mover and shaker in the art world, who is also one hell of a grand lady."
    Steve Kopian, Unseen Films
  • "A thoroughly engaging documentary portrait of an artist ... Queen of Hearts: Audrey Flack, from director Deborah Shaffer (To Be Heard) and co-director Rachel Reichman (editor on Hitchcock/Truffaut) is the perfect introduction to its subject, comprehensive in its detail and captivating in its approach"
    Christopher Reed, Hammer to Nail
  • "One of the most dramatic segments of the film’s narrative arc is that it first takes us through a period in which Flack stopped painting at the height of her success, shuttered the studio for two years, and re-emerged as a sculptor. Her long second act includes the prolific production of often monumental sculptural works — but we meet her just at the point at which she returns to large-scale painting after some 30 years. Through it all, we meet in the same woman a hard-core student of art history with a tireless mind for visual problem solving, technical innovation, and ambition, who is also a charming, down to earth and feisty story-teller that makes us feel like she’s speaking just to us."
    Shana Nys Dambrot, LA Weekly
  • "...a fascinating examination of a singular artist, a woman who thrived in the nearly completely male-dominated art world of the 50s, changing the demographic and cultural landscape of 20th century art. Anyone who is interested in hearing and seeing first hand the experience of a woman breaking the artistic glass ceiling will find the film compelling, not least because her story comes directly from the source. Audrey Flack is an opinionated, feminist artist who not only continues to create but also to educate young artists. It’s a beautiful thing to know women like her are out there. It’s time her story is being told, and we have Shaffer and Reichman to thank for that."
    Leslie Combemale, Alliance of Women Film Journalists
  • " Flack is open, contemplative, and sharp. Her tenacious need to create is naturally infectious...."
    Catherine Connell, POV Magazine
  • "For people looking for insight into this talented artist's work, this film is a revelation."
    Charles Solomon, KPCC FilmWeek
  • "In the terrific new documentary QUEEN OF HEARTS—AUDREY FLACK, directed by Deborah Shaffer and co-directed and edited by Rachel Reichman, Flack takes center stage in her studio, creating new work, philosophically holding forth, and shedding much-needed light on an overlooked chapter in the long history of twentieth-century American art."
    ParisLA