The location of cinema is your focus in 2014. Why are you asking this question right now?
On one hand, it’s a question very specific to Forum Expanded. We’ve been in so many places in the city - galleries, museums, public spaces, the Liquidrome. And everywhere we went, we learned how the inner logistics of that place worked, but also how the presentation of our programme in that space was perceived from the outside. That’s reflected in the discussions on the relationship between art and cinema – the boundaries of which are the home of Forum Expanded – two things that are always attached to specific location categories, to the question of setting. Where does something come from and where do we present it? Is it from the world of film, or the world of art? Do you see it in a theatre or in an exhibition space? The question of setting plays a big role in the definition of cinema. At the same time, the question of film attribution according to nation-state and region is a big issue in light of the many co-productions we have today. There have been massive changes with regards to "world cinema", historical and political shifts have led to alterations of perspective, interpretive authorities are being challenged. The view of experimental film cinema is shifting, for example from the Western world to countries that were barely on the experimental film map up to now, if at all – the Arab world, Africa. For me, this entails either using experimental film as a historical term and looking for a new vocabulary to describe contemporary cinema, or assigning new meanings to old words.
The Zoo Palast is once again a Berlinale venue. The cinema’s self-description includes the following: “In architecture, atmosphere and service, the new, carefully restored Zoo Palast is reminiscent of the great age of film theatre.” Is this kind of concept a model for the future?
Loss always generates feelings of nostalgia, but also creates room for possibilities. Even we had to learn that certain things truly don’t work in exhibition spaces. In leaving the cinema, you can better understand the function of the location. In that respect, I can see a certain cinema renaissance emerging, maybe even amongst those who have tried to move film to the exhibition space. First and foremost, cinema entails an entrance into a time-space structure. We learned how important that is in our exhibitions. You can’t just put a projector somewhere and fire it up. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that a film exhibition has failed, or that films can only be shown in cinemas. But every exhibition space must first be transformed into a cinematic venue, with consideration for the individual film artworks. The space-time experience can be created anywhere, what’s important is that for a certain time, the viewer is provided with that realm of experience.