Breaking Ground: 60 Years of Austrian Experimental Cinema

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Arnulf Rainer (Peter Kubelka, 1960)Breaking Ground: 60 Years of Austrian Experimental Cinema
August 17 - September 22, 2012
UCLA Film & Television Archive - Billy Wilder Theater
10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90024

Austria’s avant-garde film tradition, arising at mid-century (and thus, relatively later than those of other Western nations) has been among the most sustained and radical of such traditions. As with other Austrian arts, it is a response (in part) to past national decadence and entrenched conservatism; its repository of cutting-edge experimental film and video works is uniquely impressive and progressive, fracturing into ever-newer distinctions.

The programs in this series have been constructed from avant-garde films and videos produced between 1955 and 2010 in which virtually every technique and genre imaginable is employed, from formalist and structuralist works by such globally renowned figures as Peter Kubelka, Peter Tscherkassky and Martin Arnold, to the radical work by performance-based artists such as VALIE EXPORT, Mara Mattuschka, Kurt Kren and the Viennese actionists, as well as the boundary-breaking contemporary output of artists including Siegfried A. Fruhauf, Johann Lurf and Virgil Widrich.

Works already considered canonical are supplemented by other works that experiment with sonic art and digital technology. Moving between historical, social and aesthetic questions and purely formal works that wreak havoc with the retina, this panoramic selection is an attempt to define a poetic edge within a vast array of production while underlining links and relationships between several generations of artists, (re)discovering new ways of entering into the “material” and the frame, and examining the mechanics of cinema.

This program was curated by Brent Klinkum and presented in association with Los Angeles Filmforum and Anthology Film Archives.

Los Angeles Filmforum members receive two for one admission at the Billy Wilder Theater box office!

Note: the final two programs in this series will be presented by Los Angeles Filmforum on September 23 and 30. Info/Tix:

This series is made possible with the support of the Austrian Consulate General in Los Angeles.

Special thanks: Sonja Reiser-Weinzettl—The Austrian Foreign Ministry; Andreas Lins, Deputy Head of Post/Consul—Austrian Consulate General, Los Angeles; Gerald Weber; Brigitta Burger-Utzer; Ralph McKay—Sixpackfilm

Programme 1. Action!
August 17, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 2. Daily Business
August 18, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 3. Concrete Forms
August 25, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 4. From A to Z and Back
September 6, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 5. Cinema Revisited
September 7, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 6. Passing Time
September 15, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 7. Visiting Our Neighbors
September 21, 2012, 19:30h

Programme 8. Whose Reality?
September 22, 2012, 19:30h