May 20, 18:00h

Short Film Programme 1

Algier Report
Bernhard Dörries, BRD 1963, 15'

Contributing to the advent of the New German Cinema of the 1960s, Bernhard Dörries' Algier Report impresses by its experimental style mixed with documentary authenticity. The film shows the loneliness of an Algerian immigrant who continues to feel at risk and persecuted in West Germany. While he struggles for a residence permit, images from his past are blending in.

Frontera Sur
Helena Maleno, Alex Muñoz, ES 2003, 14'
Frontera Sur looks at the southern border of Spain, Europe's closed mainland edge to Africa. Many of those, who transgress it undocumented, work at the agricultural industries in the region of Almeria, living as almost invisible, exchangeable parts of a flexible economy, yet permanently controlled through technologies of surveillance. Under the pretext of a greater civilian security, they are kept clear from the public spaces reserved for the citizens with full rights and cultural legitimacy.

Inventur – Metzstrasse 11
Želimir Žilnik, BRD 1975, 9'

Želimir Žilnik's short film Inventur – Metzstrasse 11, produced during the years Žilnik spent in West Germany in the mid 1970s, portrays the inhabitants of an old tenement building in central Munich. Most of them are foreigners who reside in West Germany as 'guest workers'. They present themselves on the main staircase of house and talk briefly about their living conditions, biggest worries, fresh hopes and plans for the future – each in his or her own language.

Your blood is as red as mine
Julika Rudelius, NL 2004, 16'

"How does it feel to be black or dark-skinned, or white? What is light? And what does light do to a photo of a dark face? A white woman spends some time in a black community in Amsterdam where she talks to people about the colour of their skin, and about the photos that she makes of them. She asks, they respond. They ask, she responds, in an investigation of identity and the meaning of the clichés around 'black' and 'white'." (Esma Moukhtar)

One Day
Ditte Haarløv Johnsen, DK 2007, 30'


Intimate close-ups conceal faces but reveal sordid circumstances in One Day, Ditte Haarløv Johnsen's complex and utterly sensitive documentary about a West African woman working as a prostitute in Denmark. She finds both solace and sacrifice through her cell phone, connecting with the family and her daughter she hasn’t seen in six years, yet always remaining available to clients.

May 21, 19:00h

Short Film Programme 2

Chic Point
Sharif Waked, IL 2003, 7'

The male fashion show simulated in Sharif Waked's video visually explores the nexus of politics, consumption and desire. Chic Point bares the loaded politics of the gaze as it documents the thousands of moments in which Palestinians are forced to nude themselves in the face of interrogation and humiliation when they attempt to move through the expanding network of Israeli checkpoints.

Experiment on a Map
Barbara Kaiser, AT 2001, 10'
Barbara Kaiser's short documentary demonstrates how many Austrians weren't able to clearly identify all the new republics and provinces that had come out of the break-up of old Yugoslavia until 2001. It's an entertaining piece, effective and revealing in its simplicity, showing just hands which try and hesitate to attach the proper names to a map of outlined borders.

Isaac Julien, UK 1984, 25'
Isaac Julien's Territories is a milestone in the development of a black independent film aesthetic. Julien uses experimental forms to look at life in Britain in 1984, focusing on the ways traditional media represents black people and portraying the Notting Hill Carnival as an event about resistance. The film recognises that the different power dynamics that determine the experiences of the Black British are difficult to reduce to straightforward explanations and instead uses the term 'territories' to reflect the multiple agendas at work, involving race, class and sexuality.

Ottica Zero
Maja Borg, SE 2007, 13'
The ideas of 91-year-old futurist and industrial designer Jacques Fresco rely on scientific advancement linked to social wisdom which he finds corrupted in a world ruled by money and limited access to information. In Maja Borg's experimental documentary, Fresco appears in connection to the story of Italian actress Nadya Cazan. With TV and film offers flooding in, she refused to accept the competitive and superficial values of the society they represented. Ottica Zero follows Nadya on her search for alternative ways of living.

May 22, 19:00h

Jem Cohen, USA 2004, 99'
As regional character disappears and corporate culture homogenizes our surroundings, it's increasingly hard to tell where you are. In Jem Cohen's first feature-length film Chain, malls, theme parks, hotels and corporate centres worldwide are joined into one monolithic contemporary superlandscape that shapes the lives of two women caught within it. One is a Japanese businesswoman set adrift by her corporation while she researches the international theme park industry. The other is a young drifter, living and working illegally on the fringes of a shopping mall.

Short introduction:

Comprising a special selection of international films, the three-part screening program, curated by Florian Wüst, complements the panels and artists' presentations of Borders: a User's Manual. The historical as well as contemporary documentaries, experimental and instructional films create a multiplicity of perspectives in order to reflect the psychological and social implications of labour migration, undocumented border crossing, and feelings of dislocation. With films and videos by Marjoleine Boonstra, Colectivo Frontera Sur, Bernhard Dörries, Ditte Haarløv Johnsen, amongst others.


Florian Wuest (Berlin)

Born 1970 in Munich. Visual artist, filmmaker, curator for experimental film and video art, lives currently in Berlin.