In addition to the exhibitions at the Kunstsaele Berlin (Critique and Clinic) at Gutschow-Haus and the various events to be held at HAU, Forum Expanded will also be presenting ten film programmes at the Arsenal and Delphi cinemas. The programme is open for a wide range of different lengths and formats, with the works presented trying out individual forms of expression in experimental fashion in order to create new, critical perspectives on the world. Perhaps the most radical of these attempts is whiteonwhite:algorithmicnoir by Eve Sussman/Rufus Corporation, a film edited live in real time which shows a man under surveillance in a fictional East European city. Put together newly and differently at each showing, we will be presenting the film daily at Arsenal 2.
Many of the other works explore the ways in which they have been pre-fashioned by figures and ghosts from the past. These include role models such as William S. Burroughs and Brion Gysin, whose cut up method is taken up by Lebanese filmmaker Geith Al-Amine, or Luc Moullet, whose uncompleted project about two thieves (mother and daughter) in pursuit of a 35mm Aaton camera is updated in the form of French filmmaker Isabelle Prim’s La Rouge et la Noire. Pier Paolo Pasolini’s unfinished novel Petrolio was also chosen by Rosalind Nashashibi as the starting point for her film Carlo's Vision (United Kingdom/Italy). Eva Heldmann’s r I v e r r e d is an homage to Cocteau’s Orpheus, while The Last Days of British Honduras by Catherine Sullivan and Farhad Sharmini (United Kingdom/USA) is an adaptation of Ronald Tavel’s play of the same name. This cinematic adventure of the absurd will be brought to the stage at HAU 1.
Such deliberate affiliations are not the only links to leave their mark, with the bonds to the parental home also coming up repeatedly. In Vater, Mutter, was soll ich heute filmen? (Father, Mother, What Should I Film Today?), Isabell Spengler (Germany) attempts to realise her parents’ cinematic fantasies, while Canadian video artist Steve Reinke’s series of short films returns again and again to his family roots in bitingly ironic fashion in their exploration of queer and Canadian identity.
Grappling with family history is also at the centre of the video works from the Arab world: Ahmad Gossein (Lebanon/United Arab Emirates) gives his film the title My father is still a communist, intimate secrets to be published, in which a mother writes audio letters to her absent husband. In As they say, Hicham Ayouch (Morocco/United Arab Emirates) tells the brutal story of a father-son conflict, which is settled by physical means. Paul Geday (Egypt/The Netherlands) bids farewell to his parents’ piano in the midst of the Egyptian Revolution in Bye Bye.
There are many ways of using cinema aesthetics in order to discover cinema afresh from within itself. Chris Kennedy (Canada), Guillaume Cailleau and Ben Russell (Germany), Joshua Bonnetta (Canada) and Nicolas Rey (France) place the purported end of celluloid within an artistic and political context.
Yet digitalisation is not the only thing to affect the cinema landscape, as powerful political forces such as censorship and economics also have a regulatory influence on cinema. Mohammadreza Farzad’s Blames and Flames explores the Iranian revolution from the perspective of cinema, while Azin Feizabadi (Germany/USA/Iran) stages a court hearing as a performance in which the accused is a filmmaker.
Forum Expanded sets itself the task of taking apart cinema, putting it back together or even rediscovering it from anew. Although this often occurs in playful fashion, it inevitably involves discussion, which once again provides the impetus for the five international panel discussions in this year’s programme:
Cairo: The City, the Images, the Archives with Khalid Abdalla, Hala Galal, Maha Maamoun and Sarah Rifky, chaired by Marcel Schwierin
Programming the Archive with Entuziazm, Vinzenz Hediger, Angela Melitopoulos, Constanze Ruhm, Christoph Terhechte and various participants of the “Living Archive” project, chaired by Stefanie Schulte Strathaus
Working the Crisis with Minze Tummescheit, Duncan Campbell and Anjalika Sagar, chaired by Stephan Geene
Written by: The Artist with Deimantas Narkevičius, chaired by Jan Verwoert
Psychosphere and Capitalism with Kodwo Eshun, Angela Melitopoulos and Iram Ghufran, chaired by Anselm Franke.
The foyer of the Arsenal cinema will be turning green for the second time courtesy of Prinzessinnengärten, who will also be running the Filmhaus bar. As every year, the b_books collective will also be on hand with books, magazines and DVDs.
Forum Expanded is curated by Stefanie Schulte Strathaus (head curator), Anselm Franke, Nanna Heidenreich, Bettina Steinbrügge and Ulrich Ziemons (assistent curator).
Kunstsaele Berlin: Critique and Clinic with works by Heike Baranowsky (Germany), Duncan Campbell (Ireand), Luke Fowler (United Kingdom), Iram Ghufran (India), Virlani Hallberg and Jennifer Rainsford (Sweden), Ken Jacobs (USA), Steffen Köhn and Paola Calvo (Germany), Eline McGeorge (Norway), The Otolith Group (United Kingdom), Florian Wüst (Germany)
Gutschow-Haus: Elle Flanders and Tamira Sawatzky (Canada), Yazan Khalili (Palestine), Anne Quirynen (Belgium)
The Canadian Embassy – Marshall McLuhan Salon: Steve Reinke (Canada)
Arsenal 2: Eve Sussman/Rufus Corporation (USA)
Geith Al-Amine (Lebanon), Hicham Ayouch (Morocco/United Arab Emirates), Joshua Bonnetta (Canada), Guillaume Cailleau/Ben Russell (Germany), Mohammadreza Farzad (Iran), Azin Feizabadi (Germany/USA), Luke Fowler (United Kingdom), Rainer Ganahl (United Kingdom), Paul Geday (Egypt/The Netherlands), Ahmad Ghossein (Lebanon), Eva Heldmann (Germany), Chris Kennedy (Canada), Wolfgang Lehmann (Sweden/ Germany), Deimantas Narkevičius (Lithuania), Rosalind Nashashibi (Italy/United Kingdom), Isabelle Prim (France), Laure Prouvost (United Kingdom/France), Steve Reinke (USA), Nicolas Rey (France), Fern Silva (USA), Isabell Spengler (Germany), Catherine Sullivan/ Farhad Sharmini (United Kingdom/USA)
Forum Expanded Lectures and Performances
Harun Farocki (Germany); Angela Melitopoulos/Constanze Ruhm (Germany/Austria); Avi Mograbi with Noam Enbar, Ariel Armoni, Adam Scheflan, Yoni Silver (Israel)
January 23, 2012