The films of Ute Aurand, Helga Fanderl, Jeannette Muñoz and Renate Sami stress the inseparability between filmmaking and living. Theirs is a cinema in the present tense; films woven of threads of life, in all its joy and darkness, of travel, of friendship. A cinema of and for the senses, which has been widely recognized at prestigious international festivals such as Berlinale, Oberhausen, NYFF and Rotterdam.
This retrospective is made possible thanks to the collaboration of Goethe-Institut.
This retrospective programme – and its accompanying publication - takes the hive of mutual support and appreciation that the relationships between these four filmmakers constitutes as a point of departure. The programme, curated in dialogue with the four filmmakers, highlights their exchanges and correspondences; there are films dedicated to one another, sporadic collaborations. Whilst it can only offer a small glimpse into each individual filmmaker’s work, it aspires to emphasize the importance of friendship and community. A friendship formed through cinema and encounters with and through each other’s films.
Ute Aurand (Germany, 1957) has been a central figure of Berlin’s experimental film scene since the 1980s and is one the most significant filmmakers active in the 16mm diary and portrait tradition today. As a film programmer, she has championed work by women filmmakers, often showing her films in dialogue with those of fellow filmmakers and friends. Together with Renate Sami, Aurand organized the legendary screening series FilmSamstag (1997-2007).
Helga Fanderl (Germany, 1947) makes her films in Super 8, camera in hand, and eschews postproduction altogether – until it comes time to present them. Often doing her own projections from the center of the audience, each screening becomes a unique and unrepeatable montage, revealing the fluid connections that run throughout her work. Since 1986, she has created a body of work consisting of around thousand short films that she uses for screenings and also for exhibitions.
Jeannette Muñoz (Chile, 1967) is an artist who makes 16mm films that circulate primarily in experimental and non-fiction film contexts. In 2017 her work was the subject of a monograph "Jeannette Muñoz. El paisaje como un mar", edited by Francisco Algarín Navarro (Revista Lumière). Her films are largely organized around the two ongoing series "Envíos" (since 2005) and "Puchuncaví" (since 2014). She lives and works in Zurich.
Renate Sami (Germany, 1935) is a filmmaker whose work resists narrow categorisations. As Aurand writes, “Since her first film in 1975, each and every one of her works has emerged from the same strong desire to make this particular film. Whether long or short films, shot on 16 mm, Mini DV or HD, without sound or without dialogue or music – what they all have in common is the special inner freedom with which Renate Sami gives every film its form”.