Breaking Ground – 60 Years of Austrian Experimental Cinema

Breaking Ground – 60 Years of Austrian Experimental Cinema August 31 – September 29 Tel Aviv Cinematheque & Jerusalem Cinematheque

Tickets are sold in the cinematheques Jerusalem Cinematheque Tel Aviv Cinematheque

In the twentieth century, Austria’s film industry flourished with renowned directors like Fritz Lang, Joseph von Sternberg, Billy Wilder, and Otto Preminger, and more recently Michael Haneke, Ulrich Seidl, Barbara Albert, and Jessica Hausner. Less known and recognized outside the festival and museum circuit are various forms of avant-garde moving images that no doubt have been one of Austria’s key artistic forms in the past fifty years and to this day constitute an important part of its remarkably rich and diverse cultural identity. This identity goes far beyond the clichés of Viennese cafés, Baroque palaces, waltzes, and classical music to encompass the radicalism of writers and artists such as Thomas Bernhard, Elias Canetti, Elfriede Jelinek, Oskar Kokoschka, Gustav Klimt, Hermann Nitsch, and Egon Schiele, not to mention worldwide influential Austrian architects and philosophers.

This series comprises avant-garde films and videos produced between 1955 and 2010 using virtually every technique and genre imaginable. The selection ranges from formalist and structuralist works conceived by major figures on the world scene, such as Peter Kubelka, Peter Weibel and Peter Tscherkassky, to those of contemporary boundary-pushing artists. The radical work of performance-based artists like VALIE EXPORT, Mara Mattuschka, and the Viennese Actionists recorded in the highly condensed filmic documents of Kurt Kren was not ignored either. Special attention was also paid to artists who were somewhat neglected over the years, for example Maria Lassnig, Hans Scheugl, Alfred Kaiser, Ernst Schmidt Jr., and Herbert Vesely. Alongside these historical and contemporary “classics” will be shown works revisiting architecture, commissioned film festival trailers and TV ads, Gustav Deutsch’s virtuosic reconstructions of found footage, and fine examples of riveting sonic art by Tina Frank, Karoe Goldt, Michaela Grill, Michaela Schwentner, and Billy Roisz, among others.

Breaking Ground is curated by Brent Klinkum, founder and director of Transat Vidéo. Klinkum has served as a jury member at numerous international film and media art festivals and has participated in the selection committees of various festivals around the world. Since 2004, he has been a member of the acquisitions committee of the New Media Collection at Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris. 
Organization: Gerald Weber, Brigitta Burger-Utzer (sixpackfilm)
 The screenings in Israel are supported by the Austrian Cultural Forum, Tel Aviv

Program No. 01 – Action! August 31, 2016 at 9:00pm – Tel Aviv Cinematheque September 1, 2016 at 7:00pm – Jerusalem Cinematheque With an introduction by Gerald Weber (Sixpackfilm) A visual and sound roller coaster of an excitingly eclectic range of artistic modes, this program introduces viewers to what have become the hallmarks of Austrian experimental cinema and thus is the perfect place to begin the adventures into its history. Reconstructing found footage, using sophisticated multiple points of view, restaging documentaries, or undertaking structural explorations are all techniques that have all become rhythmic tools for our aural and visual pleasure and which are featured throughout this program.

Gustav Deutsch – Film ist. 1 – Movement and Time, 1998, 16mm, 15 min Sabine Hiebler & Gerhard Ertl – Schönberg, 1990, 16mm, 3 min Thomas Draschan – Yes? Oui? Ya?, 2002, 16mm, 4 min Siegfried A. Fruhauf – Mirror Mechanics, 2005, 35mm, 7 min Karoe Goldt – Subrosa, 2004, BLURAY, 3 min Peter Kubelka – Arnulf Rainer, 1960, 35mm, 6 min Moucle Blackout – Birth of Venus, 1970-72, 35mm, 5 min Thomas Korschil – Sunset Boulevard, 1991, 16mm, silent, 8 min Josef Dabernig – Wisla, 1996, 16mm, 8 min VALIE EXPORT – Body Politics, 1974, BLURAY, silent, 3 min Peter Tscherkassky – Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine, 2005, 35mm, 17 min

(Total Running Time: 79 min)

Program No. 03 – Concrete Forms September 7, 2016 at 9:00pm – Tel Aviv Cinematheque September 8, 2016 at 7:00pm – Jerusalem Cinematheque

Though the title doesn’t mention architecture explicitly, this discipline is omnipresent here in all its diversity in both the survey of structures and descriptions of space. From the Adriatic Coast to California, utopian concrete masses take on a form of their own, even becoming humorous tools for marketing footwear. Sound-based works, mainly by a younger generation of collaborative audiovisual artists, offer multilayered and intelligent abstract animations.

Lotte Schreiber – quadro, 2002, BLURAY, 10 min Dietmar Offenhuber – Besenbahn, 2001, BLURAY, 10 min Axel Corti – Humanic Spots – Cube 1, 1971, BLURAY, 00:30 min Sasha Pirker – John Lautner – The Desert Hot Springs Motel, 2007, BLURAY, 10 min n:ja (Annja Krautgasser) – Void.Seqz 5, 2009, BLURAY, 5 min Axel Corti – Humanic Spots – Cube 2, 1971, BLURAY, 00:30 min VALIE EXPORT – Hyperbulie, 1973, BLURAY, 7 min Marc Adrian – Random, 1963, 16mm, 5 min Tina Frank – Chronomops, 2004, BLURAY, 2 min Axel Corti – Humanic Spots – Cube Again, BLURAY, 00:30 min M. Schwenter – The_future_of_human_containment, 2002, 35mm, 5 min Michael Palm – Sea Concrete Human (Malfunction #1), 2001, 35mm, 29 min (2 acts) lia – Machination 84, 2010, BLURAY, 5 min

(Total Running Time: 90 min)

Program No. 07 – Visiting our Neighbors September 14, 2016 at 9:00pm – Tel Aviv Cinematheque September 15, 2016 at 7:00pm – Jerusalem Cinematheque Small or isolated communities often show a disproportionate interest in the world surrounding them. Analyzing the perception of “exotic” images, these works edit and re-edit material of the past and present. Fictional and documentary approaches and reconstructed found footage question social interactions within a 1950s rural community, moral and visual connotations of colonialism, otherness and the collective experience of migrants and refugees. Formally, they function by transposing sounds and images, and aesthetically through the displacement of communities and individuals.

Herbert Vesely – On those Evenings, 1952, Beta SP, 23 min Dietmar Brehm – Pool, 1990, 16mm, silent, 4 min Ferry Radax – Sun Stop!, 1959-69, 35mm, 25 min (2 acts) Thomas Aigelsreiter – Key West, 2002, BLURAY, 5 min Gustav Deutsch – Film ist. 9 – Conquest, 2002, 35mm, 18 min Lisl Ponger – Passages, 1996, 35mm, 11 min Peter Kubelka – Our Trip to Africa, 1961-66, 16mm, 13 min

(Total Running Time: 99 min)

Program No. 09 – In Awe September 21, 2016 at 9:00pm – Tel Aviv Cinematheque September 22, 2016 at 7:00pm – Jerusalem Cinematheque Radical explorations of television’s early beginnings and sexual desire shown explicitly in close-ups or just off screen characterize the Austrian avant-garde. This program brings together works that thematize cinema’s one-way communication and the codes normally involved in it, which turn the spectator into a naïve fan. As we watch “Viennese celebs” in awe, we don’t have to “close our eyes” and envisage a “happy end.” But can we maintain our voyeuristic gaze until the end?

Siegfried A. Fruhauf – Exposed, 2001, 16mm, 9 min Peter Kubelka – Adebar, 1957-58, 35mm, 1:30 min Peter Kubelka – Schwechater, 1957-58, 35mm, 1 min Maria Lassnig – Iris, 1971, 16mm, 10 min Friedl vom Gröller – Le Barometre, 2001, 35mm, silent, 3 min E. Schmidt Jr. – Famous Viennese Women Naked: The History of Pin-Up, 1983, 16mm, silent, 9 min Peter Weibel – TV + VT Works, 1969-72, BLURAY, 18 min Billy Roisz – Close Your Eyes, 2009, BLURAY, 13 min VALIE EXPORT – Mann & Frau & Animal, 1970-73, 16mm, 10 min Kurt Kren – 22/69 Happy End, 1969, 16mm, silent, 4 min

(Total Running Time: 78 min)

Program No. 10 – Here’s Looking at You September 28, 2016 at 9:00pm – Tel Aviv Cinematheque September 29, 2016 at 7:00pm – Jerusalem Cinematheque From the harsh lights illuminating the stage to the wonders of reproductive technology, these works elucidate the intimate through an engaging range of genres and techniques. The artists in this program use self-portraits, documentary and fictional narrative methods, performance, animation, and choreography to pose cinema’s essential question: Who’s looking at whom?

Nik Thoenen & Timo Novotny – Neon, 2003, BLURAY, 5 min Mara Mattuschka & Chris Haring – Legal Errorist, 2005, BLURAY, 15 min Friedl vom Gröller – Spitting, 2000, 35mm, silent, 2 min Maria Lassnig & Hubert Sielecki – Maria Lassing Kantate, 1992, 35mm, 8 min Günter Brus – Pullover, 1967, 16mm, silent, 3 min Kurt Kren – 8/64 Ana – Aktion Brus, 1964, 16mm, silent, 3 min Hito Steyerl – November, 2004, BLURAY, 25 min Virgil Widrich – Copy Shop, 2001, 35 mm, 12 min

(Total Running Time: 73 min)

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