FILM ARCHIVES & MILITANT CINEMA

dates tbd
Conversations & Workshops
[Register here]
working language: English

Film archives, militant memories and the future of struggles

Where do images come from? What do they want? What do they do? How are they produced and where do they circulate? Who are their authors, activators, annotators and owners? What do images need to flourish and be valorized? What kind of images count as militant? Is their act of bearing witness and providing evidence enough to make them militant? 

What kind of political space is the space of the archive? Is it national, local or international(ist)? Can images activate the future rather than just ‘taxidermically’ (Rony) capture the past? Can cinema not only be reflexive of the condition of life under capitalism but also attempt to change them?

We will discuss how it feels to create images in context of civil conflict and political repression – the personal risks, legal consequences, ethical pressures but also the aesthetic and relational possibilities associated with producing militant images. 

We will then try to pinpoint the value of activist images, going beyond the dead, abstract and commercial Eurocentric political and aesthetic categories, and looking for modes of address that reflect the relational point of view of the subaltern political subjectivities of our time. 

We will discuss the epistemology and aesthetics of realism, often associated with the male, western gaze, whether the documentary mode is more militant or ethic than fictional representations or whether these two registers can work together. We will ask how the militant tradition of third cinema can be reactivated in the current context of post-truth, hyper-mediation and techno-acceleration. We will touch upon the poetic of melodrama, associated with subaltern voices; the political possibilities of online archives, the idea of filmmaking as a political craft, and the material and immaterial resources that are needed to bring the militant imagination from the peripheries to the centre. 

We will start with an exchange. We will give you some texts and you will give us some images. We will start our first iteration by building together a mode of address to develop a common knowledge and vision of militant image. 

Suggested texts:

  1. Azoulay, Ariella. 2011. “Getting Rid of the Distinction between the Aesthetic and the Political.” Theory, Culture & Society 27 (7–8): 239–262. 
  2. Getino, Octavio. 2011. ‘The Cinema as Political Fact’. Third Text 25 (1): 41–53. 
  3. Lorde, Audrey. Poetry is not a luxury.
  4. Ögüt Ahmet and Florian Malzacher, 2016. How can we imagine a school culture based on solidarity? 
  5. PAD.MA. 10 Theses on Archive. https://pad.ma/documents/OH
  6. Rizk, Philip. 2018. 858-No archive is innocent.
  7. WHW (What, How and for Whom). Really Useful Knowledge. 

CONVERSATIONS


dates tbd
Open conversation
[Register here]
working language: English

DECOLONIAL CINEMA Facilitated by Mao Mollona with Amin Husain and Nitasha Dhillon (MTL collective)  

dates tbd
Open conversation
[Register here]
working language: English

MEDIATECA ONSHORE AND SOUTH-TO-SOUTH CINEMA Facilitated by Mao Mollona with Filipa César

WORKSHOPS


dates tbd
Workshop
open to max 15 participants [Register here]
working language: English

FOUND FOOTAGE FILM & VIDEO workshop with Zeyno Pekünlü

In times of pandemic where outside shootings and physical team work are almost impossible, found footage practices including montage, collage, and other forms of juxtaposition, repurposing images from their original context and placing them in new combinations and situations could be an exciting way of creating. The aim of this workshop is to make a brief introduction to the history of found footage through examples and exploring techniques for producing new videos and movies.

During the workshop, participants will experiment with existing material to make something new.⁠ Participants should have a video editing application installed in their computers. All the rest of the materials will be supplied.

Session 1: Introduction to found Footage

[2 Hours Online-1 Hour Offline]

  • Collective viewing of found footage movies (5 movies from different artists) and discussing different methods of using found image. (repetition, accumulation, scratching, fiction etc.) [online]
  • Discussion: What kinds of expression opportunities repurposing and remixing images provides? [online]
  • Practicing with clips (The participants will be provided with clip extracts and will work on a short video individually) [online and offline]
Session 2: Collecting and Archiving 

[2 Hours Online-1 Hour Offline]

  • Collective viewing of results of the editing exercise and common evaluation of the edited clips [online]
  • Collective viewing of 5 more found footage movies [online]
  • Which sources we could use? How we prepare and archive the sources? [online]
  • How to adjust different source clips into a common timeline? [online]
  • Individual practice (The participants will be provided with a full movie and will work on a short video individually) [online and offline]
Session 3 – Finalizing tips

[2 Hours Online-1 Hour Offline]

  • Collective viewing of results of the editing exercise and common evaluation of the edited clips [online]
  • How to finish the work (adjusting sound, color, black and white balance, exporting, titles etc.) [online]
  • Continue with the editing exercise of session 2 [online and offline]
Session 4 – Time to go crazy

[2 Hours Online-1 Hour Offline]

Before session 4, the participants will develop ideas on their own editing exercise, via email we will discuss the possibilities and they will gather their own materials for the final exercise. [offline]

  • Collective viewing of results of the editing exercise and common evaluation of the edited clips [online]
  • Discussion on copyrights, copyleft, fair use, ethics of found footage (online)
  • Editing exercise of their own material [online and offline]
Session 5- Results

[2 Hours Offline]

Collective viewing of results of the editing exercise and common evaluation of the edited videos [offline]


dates tbd
Workshop
[Register here]
working language: English

EUTOPIA workshop with Philip Rizk

In the early 1500s Thomas More wrote a novel entitled with a word he coined, utopia. 500 years later the play on words More had intended has been lost and only one of the two possible meanings of the term remains in common use: ou-topia, the impossible place. In the workshop “Eu-topian images for our times”, we will resurrect the second possibility of the term, eu-topia as a better place, with eyes set on the present – not a faraway future. In the six session workshop we will engage with films and critical readings on themes of counter-histories, agricultural self-sufficiency and organic seed production, the commons, anti-neo-colonialism, anti-imperialism and afro-futurist sounds for the now. The participants will meet online weekly to discuss and be inspired by each others’ interactions with the workshop materials during the course of the week.  A central pivot of the workshop is the exploration of the possibilities that images allow for in both form and content. Through images we can theorize and think, indeed images have the potential to open up a critical space of imagining different worlds, to arouse the eu-topic for our times. 

I think it is important to mention a few points:

– the curriculum is not Western-centric, which is reflected in the films we will watch   

– while Utopia has become a popular lens through which to view literature in recent years with the rise of utopian studies, very little work has been done on the relationship of moving images to utopia. This is a collective exercise in which we will be drawing on a lot of different texts and films

– we will have various guests to participate in the conversation around agroecology, degrowth, gender and class