Croatia's 25FPS Experimental Film & Video Festival keeps growing each year and is becoming one of the most interesting festivals in Europe. This year's edition will take place from 21 to 26 September in the city of Zagreb, and features a competitive section with 48 short films (selected out of 1500 submissions) screened in eight themed programmes. The section Focus on Croatia will present a selection of recent film and video works from the Balkan country. Legendary Austrian filmmaker Peter Kubelka will introduce two programmes of his films (Metaphoric cinema and Metric cinema) and give lectures on his cinema. The festival jury, formed by Florian Wüst (Germany), Leila Topic (Croatia) and Joost Rekveld (Netherlands) is also the protagonist with one programme curated by each member. This year's edition continues offering a special space dedicated to expanded cinema, with four performances by Bruce McClure, Phill Niblock and Ivan Marušic Klif, Hrvoje Nikšic, Hrvoje Radnic & Ivan Cadež.
September 21-26, 2010
20h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 1: Border, Caution
- Atlantiques (Mati Diop, 2009, France/Senegal, 15'00'', HDCam)
Sitting in front of a fire, Serigne, a youngster from Dakar, tells two friends the story of his journey by pirogue as an illegal immigrant. The idea of crossing the sea is a feverish obsession. His words sound like a melancholic poem. Stories of youngsters who are continuously travelling between the past, present and future, between life and death and between History and legend.
- La bohème (Werner Herzog, 2009, UK, 04'23'', Digibeta)
German director Werner Herzog’s moving interpretation of Puccini’s love duet O Soave Fanciulla from La bohème is set among the Mursi people of south-west Ethiopia: Herzog combines powerful imagery to produce a wholly original marriage of opera and film.
- Synchronisation (Rimas Sakalauskas, 2009, Lithuania, 08'03'', Beta SP)
Like in a child’s dream, buildings from the Soviet era start leading their own life in a separate reality. Synchronisation has been compiled from free associations and small impossibilities. The slow tempo and spatial soundtrack give the film a compelling atmosphere and inner logic. Buildings from the Soviet era make the scenes monumental and suggestive.
- Flag Mountain (John Smith, 2010, UK, 08'02'', HDCam)
In Nicosia, the divided capital of Cyprus, a display of nationalism is taken to its logical conclusion. Moving between macro and micro perspectives, Flag Mountain sets dramatic spectacle against everyday life as the inhabitants of both sides of the city go about their daily business.
- For Cultural Purposes Only (Sarah Wood, 2009,UK, 08'25'', Digibeta)
An experimental film essay investigating the cultural importance of cinema. Interviewees describe from memory scenes from the history of Palestinian cinema. An artist interprets the memory and draws what he hears. His drawings stand either for the original where the film is lost, or are corroborated by film imagery where the original film survives. These actions are interspersed with the story of the lost Palestinian Film Archive.
- Noé (Pauline Julier, 2010, Switzerland, 20'00'', Beta SP)
The viewer sees through the eyes of Noah, taken to the end of the world to a place where all seeds are kept safe. He can stand no longer the ordered space in which he is enclosed to live and decides to leave. Outside the world has disappeared under the ice. Poetic metaphor for a state of lucid madness, the film suggest the possibility of a world uninhabited and sterile, a white nightmare.
22h - &TD Theatre
Expanded cinema - Phill Niblock: Music and Images
16h - SC Cinema
What You See is What You Hear
Curated by Leila Topic. Intro and Q&A.
- untitled_vertonung (Markus Heckmann, 2009, 06'06'', DE/CA, Digibeta)
untitled_vertonung is a meditative and visually seductive perspective on relations between more traditional artistic genres, such as painting, and digital art. The work reveals an encounter of organic, “painted” forms and barcodes similar to lines sprouting from these organic forms. “Vertonung” can be translated as “setting to music,” and it was made based on the scanned paintings of Rui Pimenta, made especially for this project, processed afterwards in real time by Heckmann.
- Attack on Silence: Isomorphism and Totality (Mark Fell, 2010, 19'27'', UK, Digibeta)
Attack on Silence is a series of works initiated by Fell in January 2008 following an invitation from his friend and colleague Mat Steel to submit a work for the POV event (Wanchai, Hong Kong 2008). For this, Fell developed an almost entirely static computer generated audio-visual piece that he described as a “reaction against the highly dynamic VJ style performances” of his peers. In this piece, visual patterns are not plotted in response to a real time analysis of sound, but instead elementary relationships between sound and image are specified at an algorithmic level that is prior to both sound and image.
- Projektor (Rechenzentrum, 2003, 04'37'', DE, HDCAM)
The 1950s educational film intended for the young, aiming at explaining them how the relationship between sound and film strip works, served as a basis for Projektor. The work also features the text of Timothy McVeigh’s execution protocol, at equal intervals. Timothy McVeigh was accused of the Oklahoma terrorist attack. The authors did not wish to create a “committed work,” however they were disconcerted by the cold precision of the execution protocol applied on a human being so they included it in their film as a certain liberation from the disconcerting idea.
- Otan Osaa (Lillevan, 2009, 04'20'', DE, HDCAM)
Using footage of desert sand motion and sugar crystal growth, along with a code – specially designed sound-analysing algorithm – the author combined the desired elements such as filmed fragments of sand motion and crystal growth, i.e. the layout of these fragments. The work displays the author’s wish to use music as an “editor” of visual elements rather than a musical illustration. For that reason he renounced control over the interplay between filmed fragments, allowing the algorithm to take the leading role from time to time.
- Chronomops (Tina Frank, 2004, 02'00'', AT, Beta SP)
Chronomops is claimed to open the door to another dimension. Unlike the usual visually reduced works or omnipresent image manipulation through filters and layers, Chronomops offers sparkling colourful space acting at the same time as colouristic transgression, perceptive madness and pop-merry-go-round. Abstract architecture of coloured vertical lines is relinquished to endless rotation in which modules and basic elements of “architecture” spin together with the system.
- Distorted Areas~0.1 (fields of interim) (Manuel Knapp, 2008, 05'38'', AT, Beta SP)
A video image works by the principle of aesthetics contrary to the logic of direction or usefulness of technological tools, in this case the software module for the implementation of certain rendering effects, disturbing them to the greatest possible extent. This module is deliberately used contrary to its general purpose, while a “meaningful” graphic 3D image transforms into a dislocated black and white surface with no rules, only “meaningless” oscillating lines and patterns. Sound acts in a similar manner: using feedback and sound effect devices the sounds are intertwined without a meaning or purpose with image formations. The video is a result of perverted relations of the reproduced. However, what can be seen and heard, i.e. what “is” image and sound, is the contortion as such. (Marc Ries)
- -2.20 (Billy Roisz, 2003, 04'00'', AT, Beta SP)
-2.20 is a tribute to vinyl records not only as a sound carrier, but also as a visual object containing engraved marks of its own past: cuts, dust, ridges. All these marks of a history can be seen and heard in this work. -2.20 is one of Roisz’s rare works realised with “actual” camera footage, given that most of her works are based on audio/video signals combined with microscopic images, drawings or photography.
- Spray (Carsten Nicolai, 2005, 08'11'', DE, Digibeta)
Spray is meant as an installation consisting of a room containing stealth-formed sitting elements. Two-sided eight-minute video projections present a process of accumulating regular-shaped sample-creating pixels and irregular forms, dissipating into fragments only to be re-disintegrated. The intention was to present an idea of communication system resilience. Even though communication systems tend to grind information, the original part is left intact. Spray’s stealthy shapes keep containing enough information to establish previous order and repeat the cycle.
- cityscapes (Michaela Grill & Martin Siewert, 2007, 16'00'', AT, Beta SP)
The perception of the city in the modern era is characterized by its fleeting and momentary nature. Social and architectural constructions are fragmented and dashing past. cityscapes attempts to make archived recordings from the Austrian Film Museum legible along these lines. Single images are isolated from the cinematographic flow in order to scrutinise their inscribed cognitive potential.
18h - SC Cinema
Joost Rekveld: Light Matters
Intro and Q&A: Joost Rekveld
- #3 (Joost Rekveld, 1994, Netherlands, 04'00'', 16 mm)
Already for a long time I have been fascinated by the fact that it is possible to construct a static image using movement, and that it is possible to recreate movement by showing several of these static images in succession. In this way both the images as well as the transformations of those images are caused by the interference between the movement of one single light-germ and the movement of the film camera. I regard this as a kind of zero point of photographically recorded film.
- #7 (Joost Rekveld, 1996, Netherlands, 31'00'', 16 mm)
In #7 all movements are caused by the interference of the stamped grid patterns and the perforation of the film-material. These lines were printed onto a transparent film with acrylic paint. Working on the filmstrip directly was interesting to me because of the simplicity of it and because of the fact that the traditional perspective inherent in the optical system of the camera becomes irrelevant. The film was created according to a precise calculation of prints and utilised colours and textures. The colours range from black to white, referring to the old idea that colours result from the clash between light and dark.
- #23.2, Book of Mirrors (Joost Rekveld, 2002, Netherlands, 12'00'', 35 mm)
Abstract film shows how pure rays of light are multiplied if they fall through kaleidoscopes or are bounced off mirrors. The film’s structure was developed in close cooperation with composer Rozalie Hirs who wrote the score. This composition is based on symmetries and inversions of proportions and gestures throughout the film. At some point #23.2 will have grown to be a cycle of five abstract films about light, inspired by concepts found in medieval and renaissance optics. The films are made with a set-up in which I use elementary optical principles to generate images. These images are caused by the interplay of light waves directly onto the emulsion, not using lenses as they are used normally to reproduce a scene outside of the camera. In that way I try to explore alternative forms of spatiality not related to traditional pictorial perspective.
- #37 (Joost Rekveld, 2009, Netherlands, 31'00'', 35 mm)
Andronicos says that in a certain place in Spain one finds small, scattered stones which are polygonal and grow spontaneously. Some of them are white, others are like wax and pregnant of smaller stones similar to themselves. I kept one to verify this myself and it gave birth at my place, so the story is not a lie. (Paradoxographus Palatinus, anonymous, 3rd century)
20h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 2: Mehr Licht!
- Boundary (Devin Horan, 2009, US/Latvia, 16'46'', Digibeta)
“In life it is possible to become angelic, human, or animal. I have become none of these things.” Boundary is the first instalment in a projected tetralogy of films (three shorts and a feature) that explore possible implications of this phrase by Sadeq Hedayat. It is an experimental documentary of a remote landscape and an isolated community near the Russian border. It documents a space of ambiguity, a psychogeography, an absence of personal histories.
- What the Blind See (Pierre Edouard Dumora, 2009, France, 14'00'', HDCam)
A blind man and a little girl wander aimlessly through an immense, empty landscape of thick snow. Where are they coming from? Where are they going? In their determination to lose themselves, they learn to recognize one another.
- H(i)J (Guillaume Cailleau, 2009, Germany, 06'00'', 16 mm)
Somewhere outside of space and time, beyond concepts expressible by words, we meet, we touch. Everything disappears, it all starts again. But each new page we turn is not blank. And when I look at you I know: we’ve been here before. One long night of the fall 2007 I have assisted my girlfriend in giving birth to our son. This is the memory of labor. (G. C.)
- Pain so Light that Appears as Tickle (Dalibor Baric, 2010, Croatia, 04'04'', Digibeta)
Pain is slowed down in slow motion up to the sensitivity threshold and is sold as an everyday anesthetic. We browse through ready-made catalogues of horror, instructions for use, we order attractive ideas-images; we wish to leave our bodies and become that image for a change. Watching a film, we forget about ourselves pretending not to be interested in the content; in fact, we are interested in the hypnotising, pulsating light, which is when we discover our magical and tribal conscience and repressed fear of life. (D. B.)
- Heliocentric (Semiconductor, 2010, UK, 15'00'', Digibeta)
Heliocentric uses time-lapse photography and astronomical tracking to plot the sun’s trajectory across a series of landscapes. The entire environment feels to pan past the camera whilst the sun stays in the centre of each frame, enabling us to gauge the earth’s rotation and orbit around the sun. As the Suns light becomes disrupted by passing weather conditions and the environment through which we encounter it, it audibly plays them as if it were a stylus.
- Parties visible et invisible d’un ensemble sous tension (Emmanuel Lefrant, 2009, France, 07'00'', 35 mm)
Africa, 2003: the mechanisms of memory. I shot the image of a landscape and buried simultaneously a film strip in the same place where the sequence was shot: the emulsion, the victim of erosion, is thus subjected to biochemical degradation. The results of these natural processes of decay are then conserved in the state of their dissolution. Those two images, and their negative versions, are then entangled together thanks to double exposure and bi-packing techniques. (E. L.)
21:30h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 3: Lone Elements
- Centipede Sun (Mihai Grecu, 2010, 10'10'', France, Digibeta)
A mesmerizing video poem on transforming landscapes: series of metaphors of isolation, deconstruction and the limits of the inhabitable territory create a unique view of the contemporary environmental condition.
- Aliki (Richard Wiebe, 2010, 05'00'', USA, Digibeta)
An encounter with a flamingo at an ancient salt lake in Cyprus. For centuries Cyprus has seen visitors and invaders. Today a man visiting sings: Pharmacist, oh pharmacist, oh pharmacist / I want medicine for myself, I want medicine for myself, / My heart, my heart, my heart is beating like this, / My heart is afflicted because of you.
- Fur (Sophie Boord, 2010, 07'50'', Australia, Digibeta)
Fur is a hybrid short experimental narrative. I employ narrative techniques to create engagement and a sense of progression, through scenes that seem to be leading somewhere. These scenes are not determined by linear plot, but by shifts in space that are psychologically driven. Gesturing toward both realism and horror I create a psychological space, a kind of sublime, which incorporates terror and beauty. (S. B.)
- Mamori (Karl Lemieux, 2010, 07'44'', Canada, 35 mm)
Mamori transports us into a black-and-white universe of fluid shapes, dappled and striated with shadows and light, where the texture of the visuals and of the celluloid itself have been transformed through the filmmaker’s artistry. The raw material of images and sounds was captured in the Amazon rainforest by filmmaker Karl Lemieux and avant-garde composer Francisco López, a specialist in field recordings. Re-filming the photographs on 16 mm stock, then developing the film stock itself and digitally editing the whole, Lemieux transmutes the raw images and accompanying sounds into an intense sensory experience at the outer limits of representation and abstraction.
- Sound over Water (Mary Helena Clark, 2009, 05'00'', USA, 16 mm)
A metamorphosis, flocks to shimmer, on a granular day. Blue water and blue sky meet on emulsion. A film for lost memories. (M.H.C.)
- The Homestead Act (Steven Woloshen, 2009, 08'11'', Canada, Beta SP)
Erosion is a symbol of change and regeneration in the land. The Homestead Act, based on the United States Federal law that gave an applicant freehold title to 160 acres of undeveloped land, is a short experimental film about erosion and the results of decay.
- The Battle of the Stand-Stills (Alexander Stewart, 2010, 16'00'', USA, HDCAM)
In footage from a 1990 world championship sprint race, two riders try and hold their bikes in place on the track as long as they possibly can. A second race between two contemporary riders shadows the original race, and a decayed velodrome overlaps with the memory of the stand-still. The Battle of the Stand-Stills is part documentary, part structural film, and part found-footage film. As three racing locations and times intersect, images from earlier races are recalled by an announcer’s narration of an invisible race.
23h - &TD Theatre
Expanded cinema: Ivan Marušic Klif, Hrvoje Nikšic, Hrvoje Radnic, Ivan Cadež
Noise vs. Waves
16h - SC Cinema
Curated by Mark Webber: Introduction by Mark Webber.
- Food (Gordon Matta-Clark, 1972, 43'00'', USA, 16 mm)
Matta-Clark’s film situates the process of food preparation in New York’s Soho at the beginning of the area’s gentrification. In the early 1970s, factory units in this former industrial zone were reappropriated as live/work lofts and art spaces in a process of inner city renewal which has since been repeated in many urban centres. Food is again at the centre of social exchange – this time in the form of a collective restaurant that served up home style cooking to all-comers but essentially functioned as a hub for a growing network of artists. Caroline Goodden was the owner and de-facto manager; Gordon Matta-Clark designed the space which occupied a corner storefront. His innovative (though not necessarily practical) design provided a central “stage” for cooking and preparation, one of New York’s first open kitchens. Its roster of chefs was drawn from artist groups such as the Trisha Brown and Grand Union dance companies, the Phillip Glass Ensemble and Mabou Mines theatre troupe. On Sundays, guest chefs including Yvonne Rainer, Robert Rauschenberg, Keith Sonnier and Donald Judd cooked their specialities. Over 100 people worked in the restaurant during the first six months. The film begins early morning at the fish market. Back at the restaurant, fish and duck gumbo is prepared and dairy products are delivered. During evening service, simple meals of salads or sea bass and cucumber are served as an accordionist entertains. After closing, the place is cleaned and bread is prepared for the following day. The camera floats freely through the action, stopping occasionally for comments from customers. Photographer Robert Frank was responsible for much of the filming and can occasionally be seen holding the microphone.
- Le cochon (Jean Eustache & Jean-Michel Barjol, 1970, 53’00'', France, 16 mm)
The pig’s life on screen is short lived – she is quickly despatched by a swift cut of the throat, but then it takes five men the best part of a day to prepare the meat. Most of them smoke constantly throughout the process, which is undertaken with an air of calm assuredness. There appears to be an economy in their artisanal activity – each has his role, and they’ve been doing it this way all their lives, as have their ancestors before them. The butchering takes place on a bed of straw in the yard. Nothing is wasted. The head is removed, and the blood and intestines are saved for traditional delicacies, the rest cut into joints. Inside the house, two men clean the intestines on the kitchen table before they are cut into equal lengths and used for sausages. It snows. Bread is delivered. In the evening everyone celebrates with wine and song. The farmers talk to each other as they go about their business but no subtitled prints are known to exist. According to co-producer Luc Moullet, their dialect is so strong and parochial that much of what they say is intelligible to native French speakers.
18h - SC Cinema
Peter Kubelka: Metric Cinema
Lecture and films: Peter Kubelka
- Adebar (Peter Kubelka, 1957, 00'69''03''' (1 664 frames), Austria, 35 mm)
In Adebar, the first metric film, only certain shot lengths are used and the image material in the film is combined according to certain rules. For instance, there is a consistent alternation between positive and negative. The film’s images are extremely high contrast black-and-white shots of dancing figures; the images are stripped down to their black-and-white essentials so that they can be used in an almost terrifyingly precise construct of image, motion, and repeated sound. (Fred Camper)
- Schwechater (Peter Kubelka, 1958, 00'60'' (1 440 frames), Austria, 35 mm)
Kubelka’s achievement is that he has taken Soviet montage one step further. While Eisenstein used shots as the basic units and edited them together in a pattern to make meanings, Kubelka has gone back to the individual still frame as the essence of cinema. The fact that a projected film consists of 24 still images per second serves as the basis of his art. (Fred Camper)
- Arnulf Rainer (Peter Kubelka, 1960, 06'24'' (9 216 frames), Austria, 35 mm)
This is a film composed entirely of frames of solid black and solid white, which Kubelka strings together in lengths as long as 24 frames and as short as a single frame. When he alternates between single black and white frames, a rapid flicker of motion-pictures projection; during the longer sections of darkness one waits in nervous anticipation for the flicker to return, without knowing precisely what form it will take. (Fred Camper)
- Dichtung und Wahrheit (Peter Kubelka, 1996-2003, 13'00'', Austria, 35 mm)
Releasing Dichtung und Wahrheit, said Peter Kubelka, required some courage. A great many people who think highly of his previous film oeuvre could have been disappointed. The filmmaker himself claimed to have undergone a radical change in position, from the role of perfectionist artist to that of hunter and gatherer. For this reason the footage for three commercial spots which make up Dichtung und Wahrheit must be considered intentionally gathered rather than found footage. The beginning of all art is the ready-made. Even today an Inuit carver will carry an evocatively shaped stone around until he discovers the image it contains. Minimal changes are then made until this image becomes visible to others too. A minimally corrected ready-made is what Kubelka had in mind – at the same time leaving room for further archaeologist questions we cannot imagine at present. The film already contains the answers. (Peter Tscherkassky)
20h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 4: Images from the Unknown
- Desert 79°: 3 Journeys beyond the Known World (Anna Abrahams, 2010, 19'00'', Netherlands, 35 mm)
Three historical accounts of Arctic travellers in search of the unknown, dating from 300 BC to the late 19th century told in different shades of white.
- Travelling Fields (Inger Lise Hansen, 2009, 09'00'', Norway, 35 mm)
Travelling Fields focuses on a particular phenomenon occurring through a change of perspective and animated camera movements, as a way of redefining a place and its geography. Sections of the landscape are documented by moving the camera upside/down, one frame at the time, along a track. The film moves between different topographies and locations in the Kola Peninsula, Northern Russia.
- Dai Yi Ming Zhi De Shi Wu (Ya-Li Huang, 2010, 10'48'', Taiwan, 35 mm)
This film is constructed upon the visual poetry between what you hear and see, and a sensual fluidity that is not based on the cause and effect relationship. It casts away the practicalities and the functionalities commonly defined in real-world objects by returning things to their raw state, and guiding the viewer’s awareness to the finer details, while intertwining layers of poetic imagery.
- Kröten (Milena Gierke, 1997-2008, 06'00'', Germany, 35 mm)
Images of a stream in southern France: it‘s the toads’ mating season. Movement on the water surface distorts the toads, sometimes making them unrecognisable, bringing two different levels of perception into the action at hand.
- Rijeka (Davor Sanvincenti, 2009, 07'30'', Croatia, Beta SP)
Through multiple crackling structures The River spreads audiovisual resources to create atmospheres that combine narrative and aesthetic concepts beyond one photography, Versus, captured with 82 years old camera-box which portrays the social landscape that is devoid of any romanticism. The work investigates and examines the human like the unforeseeable active presence between the nature and technology, analogue and digital, static and dynamic. It explores and reveals a research for the essence of seeing and hearing, for ontology of the audiovisual landscape.
- Oops Wrong Planet (Anouk De Clercq, 2009, 08'00'', Belgium, Beta SP)
Oops wrong planet shows an attractive, rolling landscape from a different planet. An attempt is made to establish contact. Long-distance communication is possible, albeit with some interference on the line. Clear contact appears impossible, though. The static appears like a veil that clouds the picture. The soundtrack of Scanner reinforces the static between distance and vicinity even further. There’s the temptation to look behind the picture, so as to bypass the interference and get to a clear picture.
21:30h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 5: Close-Ups
- M (Félix Dufour-Laperrière, 2009, 07'40'', Canada, 35 mm)
This abstract film shows the results of a year of visual and technical researches. Hand-drawn animations were scanned, manipulated and combined. The resulting images were printed on paper and reworked, then put in relation according to their level of complexity and the movements which constitute them.
- Aliquot Light (Kazuhiro Goshima, 2009, 06'35'', Japan, Digibeta)
This film is the second work of “grained time” series. This time, I took many still pictures with static position and random lighting. The pictures lighted contrasty composit into one soft lighted image. It is also a work which recreates by hand the sort of lighting techniques seen in computer generated images. (K. G.)
- Groundplay (Robert Todd, 2009, 12'09'', USA, 16 mm)
In Groundplay, Robert Todd uses his 16mm camera as a microscope. The sensitive instrument does not perceive objects, but dives into the empty spaces between them. The focus shifts to a new world filled with structures, grit and dust barely perceptible to the naked eye. (IFFR)
- The Salariat in Parts (Zachary Epcar, 2009, 11'18'', USA, Beta SP)
Several points of correspondence between the material space of the office and the gastric movements of its inhabitants. Some of the more discreet transactions of office-life are enacted: the massaging of temples, the exchanging of fluids, the sublimating of desires, the ingesting of products and offering digestive relief in a timely manner.
- The Labyrinth Runner (Robbie Cornelissen, 2009, 10'38'', Netherlands, HDCAM)
In The Labyrinth Runner, we follow a young runner who is fully concentrated on his running. The rhythm of his breathing and his step are hypnotizing. The viewer is being sucked into the body of the young runner. The boy’s metabolism is translated into an erratic trip that makes its way through departure halls, stations, storage rooms, corridors and baths. (Nanda Janssen, NiMK)
- information of decay~ (Manuel Knapp & Tim Blechmann, 2009, 18'00'', Austria, HDCAM)
information of decay~ is a visual and acoustic examination of the aesthetic potentialities of interim noise within deconstructed and distorted interiors. Noise serves at the same time as a medium for transporting information and communication between the visual and acoustic levels. Its modulations have been randomized, resulting in various kinds of extreme disturbance and interference. The audio synthesis is based on non-linear systems of mathematical equations, and the acoustic signals are structured by means of generative algorithms that change constantly throughout the animation.
23h - &TD Theatre
Expanded cinema: Bruce McClure
Treeshade Looms up behind the Jostling
16h - SC Cinema
Focus on Croatia
- In utero (Ivan Ramljak & Marko Škobalj, 2010, 14'00'', Croatia, HDCAM)
Every memory is a re-creation not a playback.
- Sky Spirits (Damir Cucic & Boris Poljak, 2010, 06'00'', Croatia, Digibeta)
The basis of the experimental film Sky Spirits are real-life shots of fireworks. The authors of the film have collected these shots from the year 2001 to 2008. The experiment explores the ultimate limits of fireworks as sources of light, showing this through real-life dynamic light patters which are led through video processors, resulting in chromatically rich animated samples.
- Blue Black Berlin (Ana Bilankov, 2009, 07'20'', Germany/Croatia, Beta SP)
An idyllic night promenade along the Spree River in Berlin and its walkers, cyclists and boats slowly turns into a fictional ominous and disastrous scenario of militarism, suggested by the images of objects such as surveillance cameras or shooting devices and an “explosion” of light forms.
- Transformance (Nina Kurtela, 2010, 08'00'', Germany/Croatia, Digibeta)
Transformance is a video-event-work that activates and documents a four month durational performance. Over this period of time, Nina Kurtela establishes a daily practice of visiting and witnessing the changes at the building site of the Uferstudios, Wedding, Berlin. She is spectator to the making of an institution, an art institution, the making of the theatre stage. The camera acts as a witness to her performing/witnessing. The piece emerges as a case study of an individual subject’s encounter with the radical transformations of social structures and operative models within the performing society.
- Bez naslova (Plavo) (Renata Poljak, 2010, 06'00'', Croatia, Beta SP)
The work No Title lies in between video and painting and investigates that line, making us aware of the general relevance of themes like love and art.
- Arheo 29 (Vladislav Kneževic, 2010, 09'30'', Croatia, 35 mm)
If the new world ever existed, it is still hidden way behind the horizon. An analogue clock is ticking away the last seconds before world crisis, while a noble patina covers fragments for archaeologists of memory. A silent relief in between two wars; a time of diffident bodies, of melancholy leisure, of secret divisions of the world. It is 1929. Peace before an enormous explosion.
- Klubvizija SC (Group of filmmakers, 2010, 04'00'', Croatia, 16 mm)
Klubvizija SC is a creative film workshop and lab. It was founded in 2009. The four minute long compilation presents short sequences made in two of their workshops: I Edit Every Day and Improvising with Film. Most of the participants worked for the first time with Bolex cameras and 16 mm film. Participants: Branka Valjin, Nina Belak, Daniela Zahlner, Hrvoje Stipkovic, Tomislav Šoban, Hani Domazet, Hrvoslava Brkušic, Maja Lebovic, Miro Manojlovic and others
18h - SC Cinema
Curated by Florian Wüst. Intro & Q&A.
- Inflation (Hans Richter, 1928, 03'00'', Germany, 16 mm)
Hans Richter’s short films of the 1920s comprise surreal improvisations and exercises in montage, mixing animated geometric shapes, lines and light reflections, double-exposures and stop motion effects with photographs of real objects and human faces. Inflation, screened as the supporting film of Wilhelm Thiele’s movie The Lady with the Mask (1928), functions almost as a political cartoon that comments on the disastrous impacts of hyperinflation prior to the world economic crisis of 1929: the catastrophic climax shows the hard-earned savings of the man in the street melt away.
- Die Gartenzwerge (Boris Borresholm, 1961, 10'00'', Federal Republic of Germany, 16 mm)
A satirical animation film about the “economic miracle” of West Germany after 1945. Crawling out of the rubble with white flags, petty garden gnomes exchange their steel helmets for jelly bag caps. In a joint effort of reconstruction new houses, churches and office buildings are created. But the gnomes separate again in order to pursue individual careers. Soon a bicycle, a motorcycle, a small car isn’t enough to represent the outputs of prosperity. Fat German tourists overrun the sights of Paris or Athens, and the new riches celebrate notorious parties – until they turn again to ceramics and land in the garbage.
- Het Leesplankje (Johan van der Keuken, 1973, 10'00'', Netherlands, 16 mm)
Generations of Dutch children have learnt to read by means of a board on which pictures and the words they illustrate are printed. A primary school in a popular neighbourhood in Amsterdam combines this traditional method with information about the present-day world. In Het Leesplankje, Johan van der Keuken further develops the system of gradually replacing images from conventional teaching aids with those extracted from political and social events: ”Within a very small space I attempted as far as possible to separate the sequential nature of the images and their meanings. By using short takes I was able to get as far as Salvador Allende’s speech and scenes of Pinochet assuming power in Chile. Then we return to the beginning, but the whole memorising process is now destroyed.” (Johan van der Keuken)
- Coal Spell (Sun Xun, 2008, 08'00'', China, Beta SP)
Inspired by a five Yuan RMB note, Coal Spell recounts the rise and fall of Fuxin, an old industrial coal city located in Northeast China. Yellow sand storms wreak havoc. Huge smokestacks pierce the sky, clouds of black smoke block the sun. Political slogans blast away daily, they drown out any form of curiosity about the outside world. The city is a tremendous prison where history is boxed up like a fierce monster, until a screeching Soviet excavator is forced to gouge the land. Sun Xun’s meticulously drawn animation film questions the relationship of history and power, based on the artist’s own experiences and nostalgia for his upbringing.
- The Anarchist Banker (Jan Peter Hammer, 2010, 30'00'', Germany, HDCAM)
Named after a 1922 novella by Portuguese writer Fernando Pessoa, The Anarchist Banker restages Pessoa’s dialogue between a banker and his secretary as a TV talk show – an interview between an investment banker and a news journalist. Pessoa’s character is inspired by the life of Alves dos Reis, a shady financier who almost bankrupted the Portuguese state single-handedly by mounting a huge fraud which shook the credibility of the Portuguese currency, the Escudo. The dialogue’s original content has been adapted to reflect upon today’s financial practices and the resulting crisis of 2008, utilizing fragments of writings by Max Stirner and Milton Friedman. The banker’s inexorable convictions and his defense of unabashed individualism, however, are faithful to the original, and prove themselves uncannily contemporary.
- Magical World (Johanna Billing, 2005, 06'00'', Sweden, Mini DV)
Shot during a summer day in 2005, the camera moves between a free after-school centre and its worn surroundings in Dubrava, a suburb of Zagreb. The looped footage of children rehearsing the 1968 Rotary Connection song Magical World acts as an anthem for an uncertain future and presents a glimpse of a country in transition. The children, who were all born after the Yugoslav wars of the early 1990s, deliver a haunting and hopeful rendition with reservation and pride. In newly learned English, a young Croatian boy sings the enigmatic and defiant first lines: “Why do you want to wake me from such a beautiful dream? Can’t you see that I am sleeping? We live in a Magical World.” The psychedelic soul band Rotary Connection was one of the first ethnically mixed bands in the US. Active during the social upheavals and the civil rights movements of the 1960s, they reflected a desire for change without being – at the time – explicitly political.
20h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 6: Twisted Eyes
- Wakaranai buta (Atsushi Wada, 2010, 10'00'', Japan, HDCAM)
A huge pig is lying down in front of the house man’s family lives in. Each of them notices the other exist, but they do not understand each other.
- Verdrehte Augen - 2. Videoversion (Dietmar Brehm, 2002-2008, 11'30'', Austria, Digibeta)
Artist Dietmar Brehm of Linz, remaining true to the obsessions he has cultivated over decades, shows in classic found-footage style optically altered clips from old porn movies. Twisted Eyes is not a “best of” compilation of sex scenes; on the contrary, it represents a disturbing montage of glances and gestures charged with implicit lust. (Michael Loebenstein)
- If There Be Thorns (Michael Robinson, 2009, 13'20'', USA, Beta SP)
A dark wave of exile, incest, and magic burns across the tropics, forging a knotted trail into the black hole. Three star-crossed siblings wander in search of one another as a storm of purple prose and easy listening slowly engulfs them.
- Massage the History (Cameron Jamie, 2009, 10'00'', USA, 35 mm)
Massage the History documents a group of young male adults living in the suburbs of Alabama who film themselves privately, using their body language to post their fantastically uncanny dances on the Internet. Within their choreography they reach a trance and voodoo-induced state of possession as their bodies move freely, reacting within the physical arena of the domestic living room space. The haunting and dreamlike soundtrack of the film is by Sonic Youth. (C. J.)
- Hand Soap (Kei Oyama, 2008, 16'00'', Japan, HDCAM)
A quiet and disquieting story about a boy who is reaching puberty and his family.
21:30h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 7: Ghosts and Lovers
- Phone Tapping (Hee Won Navi Lee, 2009, 10'20'', South Korea, HDCAM)
The film is built from a tipping point that leads us imperceptibly from day to night, fleeting a moment where what was is gone, where things can take another meaning. Many voiceovers that cross the portable telephone, speaking of ghosts, guide us through the city, while the camera seems in search of a plot of land, a concordance story – image. The topography of the place is built and moves in parallel with another topography, the mental one. Maybe they meet somewhere here in a new psychological space. A personal story carries us through the city of Seoul, for us to follow and choose the field of interpretation.
- A Tale of Heaven (Phuttiphong Aroonpheng, 2010, 05'50'', Thailand, Beta SP)
A touching summary of Thai film. A Super 8 miniature with motives of forest, spirit and fantasy reconstructs a memory of death. The director explains: My mother dreamed that my late father paid her a visit. She strongly believes that it wasn‘t a dream.
- A Film (Hisham Bizri, 2010, 08'32'', USA/France, HDCAM)
This is a film poem about love. A Lebanese-American filmmaker photographs/remembers a woman in Paris: as a child, a trapeze artist, a model, and a lover. The film carries within it melancholy and loneliness, sadness and joy. It evolves out of the metaphor that life is a circular journey whose end is “to arrive where we started / And know that place for the first time” (T. S. Eliot, Little Gidding)
- Wednesday Morning Two A.M. (Lewis Klahr, 2009, 06'04'', USA, Digibeta)
Wednesday Morning Two A.M. is the first completed film of a new series entitled Couplets (a sub-grouping of the umbrella series Prolix Satori). The Couplets will generally, but not exclusively, organize themselves around the pairing of various pop songs and just as in the song lyrics here, the theme of love. (L. K.)
- Nespavanje ne ubija (Marko Meštrovic, 2010, 09'00'', Croatia, 35 mm)
What happens when a dream takes control over reality?
- Kodomo ga Mushi no Shigai wo Umeni Iku (Rei Hayama, 2009, 11'00'', Japan, Beta SP)
Kodomo ga Mushi no Shigai wo Umeni Iku is an 8mm experimental film. The repeated sequence of “a girl appearing in the woods, burying dead insects and then leaving” is made without a camera. With each repetition, the film images are broken down and the color is fading. The girl is performed by the filmmaker herself, channeling media as a medium. This film is structural but also has a narrative.
- Small Village and Its Remains (Chaisiri Jiwarangsan, 2009, 15'33'', Thailand, Beta SP)
Nabua’s young villagers narrate theirs memories about dead people through portraits. They merrily share stories of them, giving us no sense of lament. Abandoned houses with the dead pictures listen to them silently. In the field at night, a photographer tries to distort the memories of the village. Na-Bua District had been classified as a high-risk area, where the inhabitants’ ancestors had been subjected to torture and mistreatment from soldiers, the stories that were continually being conveyed to me were the tales of the gentlemen’s grandparents and their struggle to survive. The image of the village that remains vividly in my mind’s eye depicts the houses, deserted in broad daylight, with only their framed faces, telling their silent stories, and the exterior shell of my conscience urging me to collect their tales and pass them on in the form of a short film. (CH. J.)
23h - &TD Theatre
Expanded cinema: Bruce McClure
There Was Someone Else Behind It!
16h - SC Cinema
A Grammar for Listening
18h - SC Cinema
Peter Kubelka:Metaphoric Cinema
Lecture and films: Peter Kubelka
- Mosaik im Vertrauen (Peter Kubelka, 1955, 16'00'', Austria, 35 mm)
Kubelka’s motives for making the film lie in his belief that commercial films do not fully exploit cinematic possibilities. He declares that the place of the plot and its ostensibly disparate scenes in the screen, and the time shall be any time at which the film is shown. (Alfred Schmeller)
- Unsere Afrikareise (Peter Kubelka, 1966, 12'30'', Austria, 16 mm)
Behind the title Unsere Afrikareise, suggesting a home movie at norm, a travelogue-travelorama at best, hides one of the most sophisticated visions in the history of the cinema. Like the monumental narratives Peter Kubelka’s film portrays the character of the traveller with as much precision as the continent travelled. (Adam Sidney)
- Pause! (Peter Kubelka, 1977, 12’30'', Austria, 16 mm)
Arnulf Rainer himself is an artist of unique originality and intensity. His face art, which constitutes the source of imagery of Pause! is a chapter of modern art in itself. [...] During the first images I had an existential fear. Kubelka had to consume and to transcend not only Arnulf Rainer but also to transcend the entire genre of contemporary art known as face art. A few images more and my heart regained itself and jumped into excitement: both Rainer and Art disintegrated and became molecules, frames of movement and expression, material at the disposal of the Muse of Cinema. (Jonas Mekas)
20h - SC Cinema
Competition Programme 8: Future Self-Portrait
- Noreturn (Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, 2009, 15'59'', France, Digibeta)
Turbine Hall at the London Tate, fifty years later. The film is based on a simple idea, how will a child remember that predictive installation? D. offers us today’s memories launched into the future.
- Portrait (Peter Miller, 2009, 07'00'', Germany, 35 mm)
A portrait is how others see us showing ourselves, but only as we want others to see us. There is a second half to every portrait, an audience, predictable in their own poses, “acting naturally”. (P. M.)
- Monolog (Laure Prouvost, 2009, 12'00'', UK/France, Digibeta)
Laure Prouvost parodies her own role as a director, and our role as an audience, as she directs attention to the screening space itself.
- b-star, untötbar! (Sabine Marte, 2009, 07'30'', Austria, Beta SP)
b-star, untötbar! is the compelling interjection made by a character throughout the film. The story moves from the fictional level of filmic space into real space, producing a loop of fictionality and literality. (S. M.)
- Zwölf Boxkämpfer jagen Victor quer über den großen Sylter Deich 140 9 (Johann Lurf, 2009, 03'00'', Austria, 35 mm)
Johann Lurf collected 3664 single frames from numerous feature films in projection booths of several Viennese cinemas, which were cut off. Then he re-structured them to a racy image-sound staccato.
- Coming Attractions (Peter Tscherkassky, 2010, 25'00'', Austria, 35 mm) - Out of competition
Coming Attractions and the construction of its images are woven around the idea that there is a deep, underlying relationship between early cinema and avant-garde film. Tom Gunning was among the first to describe and investigate this notion in a systematic and methodical manner in his well known and often quoted essay: An Unseen Energy Swallows Space: The Space in Early Film and Its Relation to American Avant-Garde Film (in: John L. Fell [ed.], Film Before Griffith, Berkeley 1983). Coming Attractions additionally addresses Gunning’s concept of a Cinema of Attractions. This term is used to describe a completely different relation between actor, camera and audience to be found in early cinema in general, as compared to the modern cinema which developed after 1910, gradually leading to the narrative technique of D. W. Griffith. (…) The impetus for Coming Attractions was to bring the three together: commercials, early cinema, and avant-garde film. (P. T.)
21:30h - SC Cinema
25 FPS Award Ceremony
23h - SC Cinema
Enter the Void (2009, France/Germany/Italy, 150'00'', 35 mm)
18h - SC Cinema
Best of 2010
Screening of awarded films at 6th 25 FPS
20h - SC Cinema
Let Each One Go Where He May (2009, 135'00'', USA/Suriname, 16 mm)