No fear! This call is preceded by Ruth Beckermann’s encounters. Beckermann stands for political cinema, far beyond the borders of Austria. At the invitation of the European Forum Alpbach, she invites other personalities with whom she has always wanted to exchange. She asks Max Czollek, Mollena Lee Williams-Haas, Georg Friedrich Haas, Avi Mograbi and Elfie Semotan to come to Alpbach: to think, philosophize and discuss. Topics from all symposia are taken up. Join in!
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Writer and Filmmaker, Vienna
| ||Ruth Beckermann was born in Vienna where she also spent her childhood. After her studies in journalism and history of art in Vienna, Tel Aviv and New York, she took her degree as Dr.phil in 1977 at the University of Vienna. She since contributed as a journalist to several Austrian and Swiss magazines. In 1978 she (co-)founded the distribution company filmladen in which she was active for seven years. In this period Ruth Beckermann started to make films and to write books. Since 1985 she works as a writer and filmmaker. Her film "The Dreamed Ones" was selected at many international festivals and won several awards. In 2018, Ruth Beckermann finished her latest film "The Waldheim Waltz" and won, among other prices, the Glashütte-Original Documentary Award of the Berlin International Film Festival.|
Writer, Curator and Film Historian, Vienna
| ||Alexander Horwath, born in 1964, is a writer and curator. He is the former director of the Austrian Film Museum (2002-17) and of the Viennale – Vienna International Film Festival (1992-97). He also curated the documenta 12 film programme (2007) in Kassel. Starting out as a critic in 1985, he has published articles on film- and art-related topics in Austria, Germany, France, Italy, the U.S., Australia, the Netherlands, and Great Britain. As a curator and festival consultant, he has worked with the Biennale di Venezia, the Museum of Modern Art (New York), and the Locarno Film Festival, among others, and has lectured on film at universities and cultural institutions in Austria and internationally. His publications as author and (co-)editor include books on topics such as Film Curatorship, New Hollywood Cinema, Avant-garde Film and on filmmakers such as Michael Haneke, Josef von Sternberg, and Ruth Beckermann. He is a board member of the Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Vienna, and a member of the Akademie der Künste, Berlin.|
Filmmaker and Video Artist, Tel Aviv
| ||Israeli filmmaker and video artist Avi Mograbi was born in 1956 in Tel Aviv. He studied art and philosophy in Tel Aviv, where he lives today. After gathering his first experience assisting directors, his own filmmaking began in 1989. Since 1999 he teaches documentary and experimental filmmaking at the University of Tel Aviv. Avi Mograbi is not only considered Israel’s most important documentarist, but also - as a committed eyewitness of the Middle East conflict, an experimentalist, and avid reformist of cinematic language. As a political filmmaker he is also actively involved in "Breaking the Silence", an organization of ex-soldiers dedicated to collecting testimonies about their service. His films have appeared at festivals worldwide. August (2002) received the Peace Film Award at the Berlinale. Z32 (2008) received the Excellence Award at Yamagata Film Festival. Avenge But One of My Blue Eyes (2005) was screened at the Cannes Film Festival and received the Amnesty Award as well as special mention at the Rotterdam Film Festival.|
| ||Elfie Semotan graduated from Austrian Fashion School Of Design in 1960, then discovered photography in Paris, where she was modelling. Back to Vienna in 1969, she began working as a professional photographer, doing fashion, advertising and portraits, becoming Austria’s most famous photographer. She then worked on an international level for magazines such as Vogue, Elle, Esquire, Interview, ID, Harper’s Bazaar, Allure, Marie Claire, The New Yorker and many more. She moved to NYC in 1994, where she pursued her career, as well as developing personal exhibitions projects. Elfie Semotan has been married to artists Kurt Kocherscheidt and Martin Kippenberger, with whom she collaborated, as well as with longtime friend Helmut Lang. She has two sons, and now lives and works in New York, Vienna, and Jennersdorf (Austria).|