Urban Research 2012 Poster

urban research on film - directors lounge 2012
film / video / installation

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urban research
program I:
urban observations and local studies

Monday, 13 February 20:00

This beautiful program comprises films, which meditate on city impressions in rather leisurely pace. Urban observations are always subjective, especially if done with a camera. Also, undertaking observations is only possible when making a distinction. The observer, the camera is always part of the situation. Never is it possible to look from outside (the Hollywood ideal of realism, the "God eye's view" is only possible in fiction). Thus, the distinctions we make are never clear cuts, the opposites spill back in, and the dichotomies unite as the complementary parts of the same idea.

A sharp and clear architectural meditation of Airport Tempelhof ("Zentralflughafen") is also a tribute to the glory and time of early passenger aviation; the opposition of nature and built environment brings back the discovery of nature in the city ("Swoop" and "Verlassen den Hafen"); the interventions with observing camera and mike change the transitory space of a bus stop to a social and almost theatrical stage ("Heart of Durham"), and even the abstract conceptual patterns of following the colours of the "Spectroscopy", or the diagonal lines of bus stop glass design ("Simultaneaus Contrast") reflect much of the ways how social space is existent in the streets. And finally, Sarah Christman with a classical documentary camera finds beauty and a fluctuating "ecological" system including people, technology, waste and nature on the waterfront of Queens, NY.


Alejandro Bernal DE
Zentralflughafen 14 min 38 2011

Audiovisual portrait of the Berlin airport Tempelhof. A work in which the soundscape reconfigures the space. Soundtrack: Diana Combo
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Caroline Koebel US
Swoop 7 min 36 2011
European Premiere

Inspired by a colony of cliff swallows nesting under a freeway in Austin, Texas, this film considers human-animal interactions through optical rhythms and flight patterns. Cliff swallows as well as thousands of purple martins collide with the construction of new freeways. Swoop is a silent film on purpose.
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Yptu Enth DE
Verlassen den Hafen 8 min 34 sec 2010

Schweigsame Geister, die sich da niederlassen, einer nach dem andern neben mir. Schwermut hängt um ihr Gehörn, und es ist ein kalter Morgen im September.
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Wenhua Shi RC/US
10 Moments 5 min 23 sec 2011

10 Moments juxtaposes China's current rise in the ranks of world powers with the visual depiction of daily scenes in Beijing.
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Deron Williams US
We Want To Give You $40 Ask Us How 2 min 30 sec 2010
European Premiere

A stolid documentation of the brightest sign on the poorest side of town. Corporate desire by way of dubious overtures.
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Leslie Supnet CA
Spectroscopy 2 min 41 sec 2011

An in-camera edited study of spectral colours during a walk through the streets of Winnipeg, MB Canada.
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Joel Wanek US
Heart of Durham 13 min 22 sec 2011

The Durham Bus Station stands on the grounds of the former Heart of Durham hotel. Initially the film was an attempt to poetically gauge where Durham's heart may lie — now however other histories and mysteries revealed themselves.
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Chris Kennedy CA
Simultaneous Contrast 5 min 00 sec 2008
16mm screening

The striped pattern of the municipal bus shelters in San Francisco becomes a fixed foreground behind which the city passes. Spatial oscillations provide a constantly permutating play of figure, ground and space, imaging the possibility of being two places at once.
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Sarah Christman US
Broad Channel 13 min 40 sec 2010
16mm screening

Over the course of four seasons, the nuances of everyday activity are examined along one narrow stretch of public shoreline in New York City's Jamaica Bay. Moments of recurrence and change cycle through an ecosystem rooted in migration.
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