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Unter uns: Speculative Film Archives

Film still from JAGDPARTIE: A black man and a white man are lying next to each other in the grass.
© Ibrahim Shaddad

Sun 11.06.

In this lecture and speculative film program, Karina Griffith presents her existing and emerging research into German film archives and Black German films. Her project, On All Fronts, was part of the re-selected program at the 2022 International Short Film Festival Oberhausen. It intervened in the film program, Confrontation of Cultures, which took place in Oberhausen in 1993 as an attempt at a postcolonial change of discourse in a reunified Germany, but didn’t invite Black positions from Germany. In her new artistic research project, she engages with the Freunde der Deutschen Kinemathek’s (today: Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art) 1982 film catalog, Ausländer unter uns, to pose similar questions about the politics of citation to present Black perspectives that could have been.

“The catalog is intended as a practical aid for all those who are concerned in one way or another with the 'problematic of foreigners' and who wish to use films to impart knowledge. As a first compilation, it needs to be improved, supplemented and updated. We would therefore be grateful for any suggestions and criticism.”
quoted from: Schoenberner, Gerhard und Seifried, Ursula: Ausländer unter uns. Ein Filmkatalog. Der Senator für Arbeit und Betriebe und Freunde der deutschen Kinemathek e.V., Berlin 1982. pg. 7

Film program:
Jagdpartie (Hunting Party) Ibrahim Shaddad GDR 1964 35 mm OVEnS 41 Min.
Cultural Nationalism Skip Norman West Germany 1968 DCP en OV 11 Min.

In the 2021 program of the first Archival Assembly, Skip Norman’s film ON AFRICA (FRG 1970) was presented after being digitized by the Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art in collaboration with Harun Farocki Institute. As a follow-up collaboration, two other films by Skip Norman in the Arsenal archive were recently digitized: BLACKMAN’S VOLUNTEER ARMY OF LIBERATION and WASHINGTON D.C. NOVEMBER 1970. To learn more about Skip Norman visit the special online edition of Rosa Mercedes, published by Harun Farocki Institute.
This year’s program presents a screening of Skip Norman’s CULTURAL NATIONALISM, produced during his time as a student at the DFFB, and which was digitally restored by the Deutsche Kinemathek. You can find further information on Skip Norman on the website of the Deutsche Kinemathek as well as a text by Madeleine Bernstorff on transnational learning (in German), building on a column originally published in The Tagesspiegel. Bernstorff’s article extensively references the “question of what transnational learning at the German Film and Television Academy Berlin (DFFB) looked like or could have looked like.”

JAGDPARTIE (Hunting Party) by Sudanese director Ibrahim Shaddad was produced in 1964 during his time as a student at Potsdam’s German Academy of Film Art (DHF) (nowadays: Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF). Arsenal digitally restorated this and other films directed by members of the Sudanese Film Group, Eltayeb Mahdi and Suliman Elnour. After its screening at the Berlinale Forum in 2019, JAGDPARTIE was also published on DVD in the Arsenal edition.

Funded by:

  • Logo Minister of State for Culture and the Media