Directors Lounge Screening at Z-Bar
Saturday, 08 Jan 2011
Relations and Abstractions
Films by
Max Hattler

Bergstraße 2
10115 Berlin-Mitte

Max Hattler surprises his audience with the gripping force of his abstracted images, combined with sounds he often composes for his own films. The German media artist and animator lives in London and has made a real leap into the media art and festival scene since he graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2005. A programme of his films was already presented at Directors Lounge 2010, and we are happy to present his new programme this month, prior to our festival in February.

In Germany, animation is not being considered as a proper art field, and similar to graphic arts it is often seen as “angewandte Kunst” i.e. craftsmanship or applied arts, mostly feeding the film industry. The field of animation can be quite broad, from animations from pencil drawings, paper-cut-outs, stop-motion, 3D animation, Flash animation and live generated computer graphics. Max Hattler seems to embrace them all, and his work could be seen as happy eclecticism, as post-modern art practice. In Aanaatt (2008) he is using stop-motion animation, Drift (2007) is a combination of close-up photography of skin combined with compositing and Flash animation, Heaven and Hell (2010) are computer generated graphic animation loops, Everything Turns (2004) has been drawn directly into the computer, and Ladyscraper: Cheese Burgers (2011) looks like it was made with live VJ tools.

Looking closer into Max’s work, however, we realize that his art is in no way about eclecticism or appropriation. The artist does make his mark with genuine image composition, and even if his use of different media tools is astonishingly varied, there is something common in most of his films, a kind of surplus, or plenitude that can be almost overwhelming. Animation, this tedious and time-consuming technique (also true in the digital age) usually leads to reduction (unless it is made by big teams and studios such as Pixar) often resulting in a kind of artistic beauty of scarcity. Not with Max Hattler, though! Even if animation techniques lead him to quite abstracted forms, they are not abstract. And the reduced, abstracted forms become symbols again, which often multiply, break apart in smaller image units, still animated, and again accumulate, congregate to larger units, to super-structures. Amazingly, this often happens with a chuckle, a political twist or black humour.

We are very much looking forward to this film night with Max Hattler, who will be available for Q&A after the show.

(curated by Klaus W. Eisenlohr)

Artist Link:

More infos:


Directors Lounge Screening in der Z-Bar
Donnerstag, 25.11.2010
Discreet Structures
Films by
Toby Cornish und Johannes Braun/  jutojo Berlin

Bergstraße 2
10115 Berlin-Mitte

 Discreet Structures, the title of the program with Toby Cornish and Johannes Braun, refers to the compositional qualities of their films. It also applies to the linking to local architecture or urban places, and to the ways the artists work with musical scores. Both artists’ work mainly originates in Super-8 or 16mm footage, which they shoot and then process digitally. And most films are product of collaborations with musicians.

Two visits to Sarajevo in 2003 and 2004 gave Toby the opportunity to make a structural film in this historically and politically charged place: Sarajevo Vertical. The bridge, where arch-duke Franz Ferdinand was murdered, which gave way to the declaration of war in 1914, the name Tito on a bridge, and the white graves of killed Muslims from the most recent war, all appear in the film but only as a backdrop, or as the ground on which the visitor stands. If “Sarajevo Vertical” has or needs a symbolical/political reading is up to the viewer. First of all it is the rule of composition of filmmaker Cornish to align every image to a vertical line while shooting and then edit the film on principles of repetition, rhythm, acceleration and size of the vertical line.

Toby Cornish is interested in metric structures, in interferences of loops with different lengths, which due to their complexity might lead to a chance operation, similar to musical structures of John Cage or Steve Reich, and which in the end where the result may surprise the artist as much as the audience. With “Rückbau”, a film about the destruction of the East German parliament building, he takes this strategy further. With the help of digital programming, the film composes itself and anew on each presentation.

Johannes Braun, on the other hand is less interested in chance operations but in the totality of visual-acoustic composition. His film Teufelsberg also shows his background as trained architect. The images unfold his explorations of building structures while he tries to capture traces “of hope and disillusion, of making and destroying, still to be sensed” in the rubble and the left-over walls. They also comment on already past (and forgotten) plans for future developments, including architecture drawings and a former model apartment of the already scattered utopia for a commercial hot-spot on Teufelsberg. The visually dense composition thus not only shows the beauty of the bygone structures but also contains an edge of irony.

With “Gaz”, a collective product, the filmmakers again show their strength of working with compositional structures. Gaz was composed to a graphical score, which the filmmakers and the 2 musicians worked on independently of one another. The film celebrates the early industrial designs around gasometers and gas-lights, still to be found in Berlin’s city center.

More infos and film stills:

Urban Research/ Directors Lounge at
KING KONG Contemporary Art Project,
Ehrenhof des Mannheimer Barockschlosses

Sound Pattern #1 Violence in the City
12-29 November 2010

Opening reception 12 November 19:30

Mannheim Barock Castle

Three guest curators, Klaus W. Eisenlohr (Berlin), Hans W. Koch (Köln) und Thomas Lühr Frankfurt/M.) present video and sound works.

Barock Castle Catacombes: Tom Skipp’s 3-channel work Stormwater, which explores Europe’s biggest stormwater reservoir before the flood

Container 1: Urban Research Screening and Installation
"urban interference and the city’s symbols"

The success of modern cities is connected with relative security and trust in the social contract between citizens. As Jan Philippe Reemtsma states: “If I happen to drop into a violent situation, I will neither be made responsible for not being armed, nor for having failed to defend myself.” (memory-quoted). Although this unwritten contract is part of the production of modernity, urban myths and symbols often tell about violent situations. Therefore, films about urban symbols often deal with the uncanny. They thus touch the precarious balance between the violence of law enforcement and undisclosed threats of decay.

On the other hand, with urban interventions, artists try to play a more active role in society . Some artists see themselves as “political activist” and try to change politics and society; others just try to reach a different, more divers audience; or, they like to reach out for a seemingly impossible dream. All of them, however, share visions and ideas about urban life. And those inspirations may be infectious!


•    Seven After Eleven, 2008 -*- Christina McPhee US
    •    Play Ground, 2009 -*- Rinat Edelstein IL
    •    Descend, 2009 -*- Pablo Useros ES
    •    Fragments of the Los Angeles River, 2009 -*- Richard O’Sullivan UK
    •    Elsewhereness: Yokohama, 2008 -*- Anders Weberg + Robert Willim SW
    •    Sintia, -*- Jose Matiella +Ivan Meza MX
    •    Buda, 2009 -*- Beatriz + Carlos Matiella MX
    •    Easy Rider, 2006 -*- Pilvi Takala FI
    •    Jalkeilla Taas (Up And About Again), 2009 -*- Maarit Suomi-Väänänen FI
    •    Amusement Park, 2001 -*- Pilvi Takala FI
    •    Drive, 2008 -*- Elham Rokni IL
    •    Simulacro, 2005 -*- Hector Falcon MX
    •    Moel Yad, 2009 -*- Hadas Tapouchi IL
    •    Night Meter, 2000-*-Yaron Lapid UK
    •    Interception 2007-2009 -*- Roch Forowicz PL
    •    Stormwater / Estanque de tormentas-*- Tom Skipp ES
curated by Klaus W. Eisenlohr (Directors’ Lounge Berlin)


KIng Kong
Klaus W. Eisenlohr

Ladybugs do not Dream
Directors Lounge Screening
Maru Ituarte and Ute Ströer

Thursday, 28 October 2010
Bergstr. 2
D-10115 Berlin-Mitte
U-Rosenthaler Platz

Ladybugs do not Dream
– Marienkäfer träumen nicht –

Two female filmmakers present their work at Z-Bar, the upcoming Directors Lounge screening. Both show a clear female point-of-view onto their subject without calling themselves feminists. Maru Ituarte, born in Monterrey, Mexico, has recorded and collected images of her surrounding with a critical view onto the violent, destructive and male-oriented aspects of a society that separates the male and female spheres at large. A found box of Hi-8 tapes, meant to be recorded over, became the source for a work called „Mexican Goulash“, which has a stunning similarity to a compilations of those self-obsessed clips to be found on Youtube in our days. It becomes the portrait of a certain part of the middle class.

Ute Ströer’s interest in film is based on her love for fairy tales and horror movies. The filmmaker meticulously works on the look of her images, strives for perfection in color and composition, and with her film characters she tries to achieve the largest band-with of expression and possible interpretation. The narrator we might have believed to hear exists only in the viewer’s head, the story we read only exists in fragments of symbols, a “Glasperlenspiel” of meanings.

Thus, as much as the aesthetic of the two artists may differ, they have much in common. Both invite, even seduce the viewer to follow onto a subjective journey of female perspective, when half-way on seemingly secure roads the viewer realizes, it’s their own imagination that has been triggered, their own story they have lived through, and actually, there is no such simple interpretation.

The artists will be present and available for Q&A.
(Curated by Klaus W. Eisenlohr)

video program
curated by Klaus W. Eisenlohr

Artists Links:


Daumenlutscherin     Ute Ströer    12:17
Schlafende Füchsin    Ute Ströer     15:07
La Metafisica Del Yoyo    Maru Ituarte    2:30
Reproduktion    Maru Ituarte     9:13
Hotel Rex    Maru Ituarte    3:06
Mexican Goulash    Maru Ituarte    9:55
Noa Noa Narko Tour    Maru Ituarte    5:01
Fleisch    Maru Ituarte     6:30
Phreak Show    Maru Ituarte    10:23
Matrijoschka    Ute Ströer     7:33

Directors Lounge presents:

The Destructive Power of Happiness
Video and Film Works by
Thursday, 23 September 2010

Bergstraße 2
10115 Berlin-Mitte

Riccardo Iacono, London-based artist and filmmaker, presents a selection of films and video from three different bodies of work: abstract videos, hand-painted films and performance tapes (produced between 1993-2007).

“I like the destructive power of fire”, a friend stated to Riccardo. It became the source for the title of the show in Berlin. Riccardo’s fire might be his anarchistic disposition to destroy static concepts. However, he does not avoid the pains, the exhaustive efforts it takes to make art from “happiness”.

In his process of working with film, the painted film became the silent musical score for the making, the re-photographing of the film. By means of an optical printer, he developed a way to have light reflected from the 3-dimensional surface of the paint, while at the same time still illuminating it from the backside. Although such animation techniques usually are tedious work, Riccardo already tried to achieve some immediacy while printing film to film. This urge for directness, and a need for improvisation and contact with people have possibly let to his more recent body of work: “Shooqui”. The whole series of videos, which involves throwing peas or clothes, is the opposite of camera-less film. The artist holds the camera, aiming and tracking the prospective trajectory of the object being thrown by his other hand. The body connection between holding and throwing leads to a compulsive and circular movement of the camera when throwing larger objects. “It is almost like the recoil action of a gun upon firing.”
(Curated by Klaus W. Eisenlohr)

From Memory 1994-2003 16mm, colour silent 15.00
Open 1994/2003 16mm optical sound 2.30
Fuzzy Lover 2003 16mm B/W silent 2.10
Pea Video 2006 DV colour Stereo 2.00
More Light 2004 DV colour Stereo 4.55
Recess 2007 DV colour stereo 1:00
P-Sample 1 2006 DV colour Stereo 2:45
Play 2001 DV colour stereo 3:50
The Electric Garden 2004 DV colour Stereo 5.55
Radiator 1994 DV colour stereo 4:15
Roadside Mix 2006 DV Colour stereo 1:31
Cold Tape 2000 DV colour stereo 1.11
Kinky 2006 DV Colour stereo 1:45
Walk 2001 DV Colour stereo 3:30
A Lecture In Throwing A Pea 2006 DV colour Stereo 1.00
Universe Energies Sustain Us 2002 DV colour Stereo 14.00
Elephant 2007 DV colour Stereo 7:30


Detailed program info:

Z-Bar, Thurs, 24th

Film and Video are media of time, maybe even more so than any other medium. The frozen time, the preserved time, as well as the composed time are even more constitutive for experimental film and art videos than for narrative film. Not only Deleuze pointed out, that film at it´s height is “temps-image” instead of “movement-image”, though he referred to European narrative cinema; also Peter Kubelka stated: “film is not movement, quite the opposite, while projecting film, every thing is being undertaken to technically prevent showing the movement of the film strip”. It is time, however, to bring together some Berlin friends of experimental film and Directors Lounge, and under the headline of “time”. Please come and meet the artists; many of whom will be present, at the program at Z-Bar Berlin.

Directors Lounge at Z-Bar, Thursday, 24 June 2010, at 21:00

The program comprises films and videos by Aline Helmcke, Andreas Gogol, Dagie Brundert, Deborah Phillips, Heiko Daxl, Ingeborg Fülepp, Jens Lüstraeten, Klaus W. Eisenlohr, Max Hattler, Myriam Thyes, Sandra Becker 01, Telemach Wiesinger, Thorsten Fleisch, Ute Reeh

Directors Lounge Screenings in der Z-Bar
Within Landscape and Time
Video Works by
Elena Näsänen
Mittwoch, 26 Mai 2010

Bergstraße 2
10115 Berlin-Mitte

Elena Näsänen
Video Künstlerin aus Finnland

Die große Leinwand, das große Kino und das Bild von Natur in Cinemascope sind Bezüge für Elena Näsänens Video Arbeiten. Sie ist eine der wenigen Künstler, die ausschließlich mit Video arbeiten, und die zudem selten auf der Kinoleinwand zu sehen sind. Stattdessen findet die Öffentlichkeit die Arbeiten der finnischen Künstlerin in Galerien und internationalen Kunstausstellungen.

Ihre Filme beinhalten Strukturen des narrativen Kinos: zu den meisten ihrer Videofilme hat sie das Drehbuch verfasst, es spielen Schauspieler, es gibt einen Kameramann und manche enthalten den Spannungsaufbau möglicher, unheimlicher Erlebnisse, wie sie die Zuschauer in Horror und Kriminalfilmen erwarten. In “Before Rain“ (Vor dem Regen) benutzt Elena Ausschnitte aus Hollywood Krimis, die jedoch nicht aufgelöst werden; in „Night“ (Nacht) folgt die weibliche Hauptfigur ihrem Drang, das Haus bei Nacht zu verlassen und den nahe liegenden dunklen Wald zu durchstreifen; und in „Wasteland“ (Ödland) ist eine Gruppe von Frauen im Hinterland Australien unterwegs, deren Aufgabe und Schicksal am Ende unbekannt bleiben. Überhaupt sind fast immer Frauen die Protagonisten der Szenen.

Zwei andere Elemente zeichnen Elenas Arbeit jedoch mindestens in ähnlich starker Weise aus: Zeit und Natur. Zeit ist gänzlich verbunden mit dem Bild. .Zeit wird ambivalent, wird zur Filmzeit, die entweder still steht oder endlos dauert, ganz abhängig vom Betrachter. Auf der anderen Seite scheint Natur die Szenerie zu dominieren. Vielleicht ist es so, dass Elene Näsenen hier den Blick auf das erhabene „Andere“ wieder aufleben lässt. Natur, so wie sie das unbekannte Andere für uns Bewohner der Städte wurde.
(Kuratiert von Klaus W. Eisenlohr)

Artist Link:

Directors Lounge
More infos and video stills:


Directors Lounge Screenings in der Z-Bar
Within Landscape and Time
Video Works by
Elena Näsänen
Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Bergstraße 2
10115 Berlin-Mitte

Elena Näsänen
Video Work

Elena Näsänen’s reference for her work on video is the big screen, the glory of grand cinema, and with that, the picture of nature in cinemascope. She is one of the few artists who work exclusively on video, and who are rarely shown on a cinema screen. Instead, the audience finds her work in art shows, galleries and international exhibitions.

The films of the Finnish artist who lives in Helsinki contain structures of narrative cinema: most of them are written by the artist, are played by actors, and they are building up a suspense of uncanny possible occurrences, which the audience anticipates to happen. In “Before Rain” Elena uses fragments of Hollywood crime movies that stay unresolved, in “Night” a female character follows an urge to leave the house at night searching through the adjunct woods, and in “Wasteland” a group of women are on their way to an unknown task and destiny.

There are two other elements, however, that seem to mark Elena’s work just as strongly: time and nature. Time is strictly connected with images. If her images stay in our memory, their time seems to persist, thus making time ambivalent, a “film time” that stands still or becomes endless, depending on the viewer. Nature, on the other hand seems to dominate the image, and Elena’s characters. Maybe, Elena Näsänen here revives a contemporary view onto the sublime other: Nature as it has become the unfamiliar other for us city dwellers. And this mystery may be contained by the Australian outback, the Chinese yellow mountains, or the Finnish landscape.
(curated by Klaus W. Eisenelohr)

Artist Link:

Directors Lounge
More infos and video stills:

directors lounge monthly screenings

“Die Gegenwart ist nicht die Wirklichkeit”
Present doesn’t Equal Reality

Heiko Daxl und Ingeborg Fülepp
Single Channel Video Works

Thursday, 26 Nov. 2009

Z-Bar Bergstraße 2

10115 Berlin-Mitte


Present doesn’t Equal Reality

Cinema – Train – Travel – Knowledge – Memory – Perception, these are terms from descriptions of video films by Heiko Daxl and Ingeborg Fülepp. In a nutshell, one could say: it all concerns vision. How has human vision, or better saying visual perception, changed since the invention of cinema and the later developments of all the forthcoming image machines? There is a reason, this program starts with the film “Le Cinema – le Train”, where the filmmakers make the analogy between the views out of the train windows while travelling, as Victor Hugo was describing it (1837) and the experience of film: “The flowers on the edge of the fields are colour spots, or better saying red and white stripes; there are no dots any more, everything turns into stripes. Crop fields become yellow streaks, clover fields appear as long green braids…”

In the ways the two artist feed their “image machines” with texts, it becomes obvious they take vision, or ‘viewing’ as serious matter: there is the connection with opinions, conceptions, point of view and perceptions, all of which in German language have a root in seeing or viewing (Ansichten, Anschauungen, Standpunkte und Sichtweisen). The plurals are intentional here, as with Flusser, it is possible to say that the camera does not allow ideological thinking, as it is not compatible with a single point of view. The art practise of Daxl and Fülepp seems to follow those lines accordingly, as almost with every new video work they experiment with new perspectives; a practise that is not constrained to camera images but that expands to abstractions, compositing and generated imaging. The sources of those images originate in travels, quotes and observations, while they are being processed heavily in post-production. If they appear as simulacra, as simulated worlds, then in does not happen without a critical sometimes ironic distancing. Thus it becomes clear that there still is something else behind those images. Something possibly lost, or conversely, still to be achieved, and which cannot be shown otherwise. Still, with Heiko and Ingeborg, we keep staying very this-worldly: to say it with an adapted quote of Wittgenstein, ‘whereof one cannot portrait in an image, thereof one must not try to picture.’

Thus, the two artists leave us in ambivalence between fascinating image worlds and ironic distance, and the liberty of choices of which perspectives onto the world, which kinds of reality we take on from the films.

What is left to mention is that for their work both artist, who work both independently and together, mostly seek for collaborations with composers from New Music or Noise background, and thus see their works as collaborative sound-image compositions.

The artists will be present for Q&A and for socialising after the screening.
(Klaus W. Eisenlohr)

More infos and images:

Press Links:

Artist Links:

media in motion berlin:

Media-Scape – Zagreb / Novigrad (Cittánova):

Strictly Berlin:


directors lounge monthly screenings

antipodean reactions
film reports from the deep south

Chris Henschke and Donna Kendrigan

Thursday, 29 Oct. 2009

Bergstraße 2
10115 Berlin-Mitte

Tonight, we will experience two very different aspects of Australian culture: Art meets science in the works of Chris Henschke and Donna Kendrigan, Australian artists from Melbourne. Donna recreated the first metereological cloud formation experiment in front of her camera. Chris inserted a lightbulb into the beams of a particle accelerator during his residency at the Australian Synchrotron, and documented the effects. The results of these experiments will be presented at the screening. However, Donna and Chris also have a very different interest. This will be shown in the second part of the night.

“Deep South” is a montage of shorts and features from the southern end of the Australian continent. A selection of degenerate yet distinctive moments in Australian film starting from 1906, paints an unashamedly unglamorous and unfamiliar portrait of Australia for the European audience – a new anti-touristic angle on Australia as opposed to the usual image of a fun and friendly holiday destination.

The artists are personally introducing the films and will be present for Q&A after the screening.

More infos at:

Artist’s Links:

Press Links:
Z-Bar –
Directors Lounge

from Deep South