09.11.2018, 14.00-18.00, Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur, Alte Kaserne

Shorts and Shortage
Workshop with Mike Hoolboom

hosted by Fabienne Liptay, Laura Walde and Carla Gabriela Engler

The interdisciplinary workshop on the topic of shortage is organized by the SNSF project «Exhibiting Film: Challenges of Format» (Film Studies, University of Zurich), in collaboration with Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur and HEAD Geneva. With lower production costs, an affinity for the experimental, and alternative distribution and exhibition patterns in various institutional contexts, shorts films are closely linked to the notion of «fringe films» (Mike Hoolboom). In 15-minute presentations, the participants discuss shortage as an aesthetic strategy, a form of production, and a theoretical concept for addressing the creation of value in various exhibition contexts.

The first known record of the term «shortage» as a synonym for lack, want, or scarcity stems from the 1860s. It is conceivable that the coinage was as a response to the interrupted export of raw cotton, harvested by slaves, from the Confederate States, due to the blockage of the southern ports during the American Civil War. This affected the British textile industry – which heralded the Industrial Revolution and the establishment of the working class – to such a degree that mass unemployment and severe poverty led to a crisis in world economy. It is this economic crisis from which Marx developed his thoughts on surplus value within capitalist production. For the workshop, we want to depart from the concept of «shortage» and its grounding in political economy and theory in order to discuss its prevalence with regard to the production, distribution, and exhibition of films.

As an expression of the scarcity of resources, resulting from their sustained lack or their deliberate renunciation, shortage can become a powerful means for challenging or countering the hegemonic norms of the film industry. In the case of the short film, its lower production costs and technological standards, its close affinity to the experimental or amateur mode, its alternative channels of dispersion and its circulation in different institutional contexts as well as its peripheral status within film culture forge close ties to essayistic and alternative, but also activist and political filmmaking. In this context, shortage can also be understood as a theoretical concept that allows for an investigation into the economic and political conditions that affect and regulate the value of films as commodity and currency within the global trade. We would like to approach the notion of shortage from different, but converging perspectives: (1) as an aesthetic strategy, (2) as a mode of production and distribution, (3) as a concept related to theories of value formation in accordance with the economic logics and logistics of films’ different exhibition contexts.

We invite film scholars, filmmakers and representatives of the festival industry to discuss notions of «shortage» in a workshop during the 22nd edition of Switzerland’s biggest short film festival in Winterthur in November 2018. The workshop will be held in English.

Speakers:
Johannes Binotto is researcher and senior lecturer for literature, cultural and media studies at the Lucerne School of Art and Design and at the English Department of the University of Zurich where he obtained his PhD with a study on the spaces of the uncanny in art, literature and film. His research focuses on the intersections between media theory, psychoanalysis and philosophy of technology. His latest publications include the edited volume „Film/Architektur. Perspektiven des Kinos auf den Raum.“

Maria Palacios Cruz is a film curator based in London and the co-founder of The Visible Press. Since 2015 she is deputy director at LUX, the UK agency for artists' moving image. She's also course director for Film Curating Studies at the newly launched Elias Querejeta Zine Eskola in San Sebastián, Spain, and a programmer for the Punto de Vista and Courtisane festivals

Carla Gabriela Engler 

Malte Hagener is Professor in Media Studies at Philipps-Universität Marburg. His research focuses on film theory and film aesthetics, German and international film history, cinephilia and post-cinema, as well as media archeology and media literacy. 

Maike Mia Höhne has curated Berlinale Shorts since the summer of 2007. Since 2001, she has worked in as a freelance writer, curator, producer, photographer and director in various contexts. Her films are distributed by arsenal experimental and Kurzfilmagentur. She has also been active for many years as a lecturer and moderator at film events. Maike Mia Höhne lives in Hamburg and Berlin.

Mike Hoolboom is a Toronto-based artist, writer, curator, poet, thinker, and filmmaker. He is one of Canada’s most prolific filmmakers. Since 1980, he has made over 100 films and videos, though most have been withdrawn from circulation. He works with a variety of lengths and formats, has published numerous books and essays and curated countless fringe-film screenings. 

Tom Kalin's work traverses diverse forms and genres, from narrative features to mixed media installation to activism. His feature film, Swoon, was awarded prizes in Berlin, Stockholm and Sundance; Savage Grace, starring Julianne Moore and Eddie Redmayne, premiered in Cannes. With frequent collaborator Doveman (Thomas Bartlett) he exhibited at NYC’s Participant Gallery and Dublin’s National Concert Hall for Blood and the Moon, an evening of music, film and performance celebrating the work of Yeats. He was a founding member of the AIDS activist collective Gran Fury, which exhibited in the Venice Biennale and is in collection of the Whitney and Smithsonian.

Fabienne Liptay is Professor of Film Studies at the University of Zurich. Her teaching and research focuses on the imagery of film, the interrelations between the visual arts and media, the processes of aesthetic production, the challenges of format and the exhibition of films.

Laura Walde has worked as a freelance curator/programmer for Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur for the past 6 years. Since October 2017, she is part of the PhD research project “Exhibiting Film: Challenges of Format”, supervised by Prof. Dr. Fabienne Liptay at the University of Zurich.

Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur © Susanne Hefti / IKFTW

Mike Hoolboom, Scrapbook, 2015, Filmstill

Mike Hoolboom, Ghost, 2017, Filmstill

Mike Hoolboom, 3 Dreams of Horses, 2018, Filmstill

Alexandra Gelis, The Island, 2018, Filmstill

Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur © Susanne Hefti / IKFTW

10.11.2018, 16.30, Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur, Foyer Theater Winterthur

Internationale Kurzfilmtage Winterthur, Foyer Theater Winterthur

Shorts and Shortage
Podium with Mike Hoolboom, Alexandra Gelis and Alia Syed

moderated by Laura Walde

This year’s «Person in Focus», Mike Hoolboom, and film artists Alia Syed and Alexandra Gelis discuss the notion of shortage in their own artistic and curatorial practice. The term will be examined from a variety of perspectives: as an aesthetic strategy, a form of production, and a theoretical concept for addressing the creation of value in various exhibition contexts.