ALTERNATIVE FILM/VIDEO 2016
Festival novog filma i videa /
Festival of New Film and Video
Beograd / Belgrade, 7 – 11. decembar 2016.
9.12. Petak | Friday
19:00 | Mala sala | Small Theatre
Autorska prezentacija / Author’s presentation
Coming Attractions, 2010, 25 min, Color / B/W, 35 mm
Exquisite Corpus, 2015, 19 min, B/W, 35 mm
Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine, 2005, 17 min, B/W, 35 mm
Outer Space, 1999, 10 min, B/W, 35 mm
Rođen 1958. u Beču. Od 1979. do 1984. živeo u Berlinu. Studirao filozofiju. Doktorska teza: „Film kao umetnost. Ka kritičkoj estetici kinematografije“ (1985/1986). Osnivač Sixpack Film. Organizovao nekoliko festivala avangardnog filma u Beču i filmskih turneja po inostranstvu. Od 1984. objavio brojne publikacije i održao brojne lekcije na temu istorije i teorije avangardnog filma. Umetnički direktor, 1993. i 1994., godišnjeg austrijskog filmskog festivala „Diagonale“. Urednik knjiga „Peter Kubelka“ (1995, sa Gabrielom Jutz) i „Film bez okvira: Istorija austrijskog avangardnog filma“ (2012). Filmove radi od 1979. Skorašnja knjiga: Alexander Horwath, Michael Loebenstein (ur.), „Peter Tscherkassky“ (nemački/engleski, Beč, 2005).
Born in 1958 in Vienna, Austria. Lived in Berlin 1979-84. Studied philosophy. Doctoral thesis: "Film as Art. Towards a Critical Aesthetics of Cinematography" (1985/86). Founding member of Sixpack Film. Organized several international avant-garde film festivals in Vienna and film tours abroad. Since 1984 numerous publications and lectures on the history and theory of avant-garde film. 1993 and 1994 artistic director of the annual Austrian film festival "Diagonale". Editor of the book "Peter Kubelka" (1995; with Gabriele Jutz) and "Film Unframed. A History of Austrian Avant-Garde Cinema" (2012). Films since 1979. Recent book: Alexander Horwath, Michael Loebenstein (Ed.), Peter Tscherkassky“ (germ./engl.; Vienna 2005).
The Exquisite Corpus
AT / 2015 19 min.
It is with deceptive simplicity that Peter Tscherkassky embarks on his filmic voyage to regions of desire found in sexualized cinema: A naked couple from a 1960s nudist film climbs aboard a small sailboat, gliding over darkly tinged waters alongside a rocky coastline before stumbling on an isolated beach where a sleeping beauty lays. It takes nearly four minutes to arrive at this juncture, before Tscherkassky blows his fuses in characteristic style. Images begin to flicker and tremble, intermingling and superimposing, nervously shimmering between positive and negative, diving headlong into over-, under-, and multiple exposures, split screens and distortion effects. The title of The Exquisite Corpus not only refers to the Surrealist method of art making called Cadavre Exquis, but also tips its hat to the colloquial German term for a fine funeral or "schöne Leiche" – photochemical cinema is almost an anachronism in this day and age. Tscherkassky´s is a rigorously analog film, manually composed one frame at a time out of moments from disembodied feature films, amateur and porn flics, as well as fragments of discarded advertising rushes – magic from the garbage can of commercial film. Dirk Schaefer interweaves an original hypnotic melody with ambient sounds, dislocated motifs from legendary exotica composer Les Baxter, Musique concrète, manipulated voices and quotes from Teiji Ito´s famous score for Maya Deren´s Meshes of the Afternoon. A subversive humor seeps into Tscherkassky’s multifaceted use of visual styles and formal play, only heightening the gentle ecstasy of voyeuristic curiosity, desire and seduction fantasy the film invokes. The Exquisite Corpus is a trance film that cunningly magnetizes animal sensuousness, a wet daydream composed of faces, bodies, weavings – tactile and textile: it is an erotic simulation game. (Stefan Grissemann)
Coming Attractions AT / 2010 25 min.
A negative image of a man's eyes in a car's rearview mirror. The countershot shows a smiling woman, and her wholly unambiguous facial expressions call our attention to the image's left-hand side, where film clips take shape in a flickering split screen. They show models, cups and various types of vehicles, which are then worked over thoroughly in the next 25 minutes: Coming Attractions. The title refers to both the nature of advertising films and early cinema, the 'cinema of attractions.' The initial visual contact juxtaposes the two genres through editing, and together with avant-garde film they represent the basic troika for 11 chapters in which Peter Tscherkassky examines the varying relationships between these three worlds of moving images. His film, a look at cinematic history through the rearview mirror, has been enriched with references in the carefully worded headings, to painting, music and film theory, in the form of wordplay. At the same time, what is being shown is fairly obvious. Using screen tests for commercials that were not meant to be preserved, Tscherkassky, the master of found footage, composed Coming Attractions in minute darkroom work. He adopted a variety of approaches in the individual chapters and, understandably, reveled in the absurd character of his raw material. Associations and cross connections are created, some of them mischievous and others with a deeper meaning: from the 'Ballet monotonique' of the daily grind at work, inspired by Léger, and actresses in advertising films who are doomed to mechanically repeat the same actions again and again, to the downright surreal scene of a model with an inflatable hood drier and a saxophone, not to forget a farewell scene in which two seemingly bewildered Pasolini actors encounter a sheepishly grinning tractor driver from a dumpling-mix commercial. This amusing cinematic cross-section presented as a cryptic visual poem, or poem of visuals, showing (un)conscious missteps is amusing, lighthearted and playful. (Christoph Huber) Coming Attractions and the construction of its images are woven around the idea that there is a deep, underlying relationship between early cinema and avant-garde film. Tom Gunning was among the first to describe and investigate this notion in a systematic and methodical manner in his well known and often quoted essay: 'An Unseen Energy Swallows Space: The Space in Early Film and Its Relation to American Avant-Garde Film' (in: John L. Fell [ed.], Film Before Griffith, Berkeley 1983). Coming Attractions additionally addresses Gunning's concept of a 'Cinema of Attractions'. This term is used to describe a completely different relation between actor, camera and audience to be found in early cinema in general, as compared to the 'modern cinema' which developed after 1910, gradually leading to the narrative technique of D.W.Griffith. The notion of a 'Cinema of Attractions' touches upon the exhibitionistic character of early film, the undaunted show and tell of its creative possibilities, and its direct addressing of the audience. At some point it occured to me that another residue of the cinema of attractions lies within the genre of advertising: Here we also often encounter a uniquely direct relation between actor, camera and audience. The impetus for Coming Attractions was to bring the three together: commercials, early cinema, and avant-garde film. (P. Tscherkassky)
Outer Space AT / 1999 10 min.
A premonition of a horror film, lurking danger: A house – at night, slightly tilted in the camera´s view, eerily lit – surfaces from the pitch black, then sinks back into it again. A young woman begins to move slowly towards the building. She enters it. The film cuts crackle, the sound track grates, suppressed, smothered. Found footage from Hollywood forms the basis for the film. The figure who creeps through the images, who is thrown around by them and who attacks them is Barbara Hershey. Tscherkassky´s dramatic frame by frame re-cycling, re-copying and new exposure of the material, folds the images and the rooms into each other. It removes the ground from under the viewer´s feet and splits faces, like in a bad dream. From the off, from outer space, foreign bodies penetrate the images and cause the montage to become panic stricken. The outer edges of the film image, the empty perforations and the skeletons of the optical sound track rehearse an invasion. They puncture the anyway indeterminate action of the film. Cinema tearing itself apart, driven by the expectation of a final ecstasy. Glass walls explode, furniture topples over. Tscherkassky puts his heroine under pressure, drives her to extremes. Time and time again she appears to hit out against the cinematic apparatus, until the images begin to stutter, are thrown off track. Outer Space is a shocker of cinematographic dysfunction; a hell-raiser of avant-garde cinema. It conjures up an inferno which pursues the destruction (of cinematic narrative and illusion) with unimaginable beauty. (Stefan Grissemann) watch the film online @ MUBI.com
Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine
Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine AT / 2005 17 min.
The hero of Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine is easy to identify. Walking down the street unknowingly, he suddenly realizes that he is not only subject to the gruesome moods of several spectators but also at the mercy of the filmmaker. He defends himself heroically, but is condemned to the gallows, where he dies a filmic death through a tearing of the film itself. Our hero then descends into Hades, the realm of shades. Here, in the underground of cinematography, he encounters innumerable printing instructions, the means whereby the existence of every filmic image is made possible. In other words, our hero encounters the conditions of his own possibility, the conditions of his very existence as a filmic shade. Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine is an attempt to transform a Roman Western into a Greek tragedy. (Peter Tscherkassky)