Directors Lounge 2010  |  Opening Party | Thurs. 20:00

Berlin’s art and media flâneurs lounge in a new art space at Pfefferberg, Berlin.

At the same time as Berlinale reaches their 60th year, Directors Lounge celebrates her 6th anniversary this February, in 2010. Starting off in 2005 as a spontaneous self-organized place for friends of experimental media arts and for stressed-out film ticket hunters, the small festival has grown to an international platform for exceptional film and media shows. Directors Lounge has presented artists and their works on fairs and exhibitions, features single artists in monthly screenings in Berlin and presents selected works on the web. However, the media art festival in February still is the very heart and core of Directors Lounge, and should not be missed.

As in the past years, for eleven days artist curators from around the world present their selected programs. There is a multitude of highlights to be discovered, special programs, music programs, and of course, you will find a relaxed lounge ambience during the days of film vibes in Berlin. Here, you will meet filmmakers and artists in person. And without stressing for tickets, you will always find something special, apart from the ordinary or marvellous.

It seems merely impossible to give a concise of the upcoming program, however certain stars on the Directors Lounge firmament become clearly visible. Coming up is a monographic programme of Jean-Gabriel Périot, the acknowledged French moralist and film essayist, who was with the festival from its start. Telemach Wiesinger and Andreas Gogol, among others, will present a 16mm film live-performance. There will be specially curated screenings from Russia, Argentina, Finland and Australia. Two themes seem to lure throughout the whole festival programs including the main selection: First, there is the gaze of the flâneur, the point of view of the stroller or the urban explorer, presented in the Urban Research program, and lingering in many other selections. Second, you will find connections between poetry, poetic film and music film, a theme taken up by such programs as the selections from Zebra Poetry Award and Literaturwerkstatt Berlin, the Festival de VideoPoesia from Argentina and the MUSEEK film program selected by Tour de Film from St. Petersburg.
In any case, the daily screenings from 6pm through late night  which will be announced just in time, as it has been a festival tradition  will serve best eye- and ear candies  for the spontaneous film flâneurs as much as for the connoisseurs of experimental delicatessen.

A warm hearted welcome!

From Team Directors Lounge

From 12th through 21th February 2010, daily from 6 pm with open end
Opening: Thursday, 11 Februar at 8 pm
Location: Meinblau e.V., Pfefferberg, Christinenstr. 18/19, D-10119 Berlin

The Warm-Up Show

We start into the year with a first night at our new location, the meinblau arthouse at the Pfefferberg. Expect teasing tidbits from the forthcoming 6th Berlin International Directors Lounge. An oeuvre surprise from all flavours, mouth-watering movies that will make you ask for more.

Ausgewählte Leckerbissen, ein kleiner Vorgeschmack auf die Lounge während der Berlinale. Erstmals im meinblau Pfefferberg.

Thursday/Do. 21. Jan meinblau Berlin Mitte, Christinenstraße 18

doors open at 8pm/Einlass ab 20h
program starts around 9pm/ Filme ab ca 21h

still from Toe Jam by Keith Schofield/The BPA

It occurred to me as I sat watching highlights from the 2009 Directors Lounge, that what experimental film can do better than any other form is capture moments. Feature length narrative films work tirelessly to make their leading actors and leading actresses convincing as genuine characters. But once an actor or an actress reaches a certain height of celebrity, is it ever possible to separate them from their celebrity on screen? If Angelina Jolie picks apples in a film about an apple farm, can we ever not see her as Angelina Jolie? I think the answer is no.

Sometimes experimental films feel like one of those manic moments you have at 2 a.m. where you bolt out of bed and race to write something down or film something or call a collaborator and rattle off an idea. There’s a breathless sense of excitement to experimental films. There’s an obvious joy for the audience in seeing someones idea executed perfectly on screen.

Barbara Rosenthal – I Got The World In The Palm Of My Hand

Barbara Rosenthal’s short film, I Got The World In The Palm Of My Hand (1988) definitely has this energy to it. In the film Rosenthal reads a newspaper article about the psychic Joan Quigley, who more or less ran the Reagan administration during the last years of his presidency. The punchline to the article is a quote from Quigley herself arguing with the depiction of her in the media and announcing emphatically that she is a “serious political astrologer.” Rosenthal can be seen on screen with a globe cupped between her hands. The immediacy of the image and the rapid-fire way Rosenthal reads the article give the film a breathless quality. It’s as if Rosenthal wants to get the idea out as quickly as possible before the moment is gone and the impulse subsides.

Christroph Kopac’s Zucker (2005).

Another film that shares Rosenthal’s, “don’t let a good idea get away from you” quality is Katharina Hein and Christroph Kopac’s Zucker (2005). In this film, Kopac is the subject, the very drunk subject, and Hein narrates his actions as if he were an animal in a nature documentary. The action of the film concerns Kopac trying to crush a single sugar cube with a hammer. He attempts this over and over again, laughing harder each time it doesn’t work. During the screening, his drunken laughter was so infectious that most of the audience laughed along. It was somehow so sweet and comforting to be able to witness someone in that state of mind. The feeling the film communicated was so immediate and bursting with life, it was just a pleasure to be a part of it.

Too much thought goes into the marketing of films, the casting, and hyping the director. Not enough thought is given to the script, the idea behind the film, and freedom to experiment and discover hidden moments. If it wasn’t for the Director’s Lounge, we might not be able to identify an honest human emotion on screen.

-Sabrina Small