Prof. Dr. María do Mar Castro Varela
is professor of Pedagogy and Social Work at the Alice Salomon University in Berlin with focus on Gender and Queer Studies. She holds a double degree in Psychology and Pedagogy and a PhD in Political Science is Professor of General Education and Social Work at the Alice Salomon University of Applied Science, Berlin. Currently she is the Sir Peter Ustinov Visiting Professor at the Institute of Contemporary History at the University of Vienna. Her work focuses on queer studies, postcolonial theory, critical migration and educational studies, trauma studies, and conspiracy narratives. Amongst others, she was Senior Fellow at the Institute for the Science of Man (IWM) in Vienna in 2015/16. She is a member of the Radiating Globality research group led by Gayatri C. Spivak, founder and member of bildungsLab* (bildungslab.net), Chair of the Berlin Institute for Contrapuntal Social Analysis, and Principal Investigator of the research project “DigitalerHass” (DigitalHate).
Simone Baumann has been working in film production for more than 25 years, and in that time she has produced many documentaries and feature films. Until March 2019, she was the head of the documentary department of Saxonia Entertainment GmbH. From 1997-2010, she was the managing director of the independent production company LE VISION. She is an experienced co-producer, and one of Europe’s leading experts on Russia, the former Eastern bloc, and their audiovisual markets. In April 2019, Simone Baumann was appointed as the Managing Director of GERMAN FILMS – the German film promotion. She has been working as the GERMAN FILMS Eastern Europe representative since 2005. She also supervised numerous feature film productions in the former Soviet Union as an executive producer and consultant.
Born in Portugal, Cíntia Gil studied at the Escola Superior de Teatro e Cinema (Lisbon Theatre and Film School) and holds a degree in Philosophy from the Faculdade de Letras da Universidade do Porto (Faculty of Arts and Humanities at the University of Porto), where she has also taught seminars on aesthetics. From 2012 to 2019, Cíntia Gil served as co-director and then director of Doclisboa, Portugal’s most important and steadily expanding documentary film festival. From 2019 to 2021 she has directed Sheffield DocFest.
Gil has curated a variety of contemporary and historical film series, retrospectives, and exhibitions. In addition, she has been a member of the executive Board of Apordoc – Associação pelo Documentário, the Portuguese documentary film association since 2015. She has also served on juries in international film festivals, such as Berlinale, Mar del Plata, Jerusalem Film Festival, Torino Film Festival, Taiwan IDF, FIDMarseille, Seville European Film Festival, DokuFest, Cairo Film Festival, among many others.
Kevin B. Lee
Kevin B. Lee (1975, USA) is a filmmaker, media artist and film critic. He studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, pursuing Master’s degrees in Film, Video, New Media and Animation, and in Visual and Critical Studies. In his short films and documentaries, Lee often criticises the medium of film and the film industry. Over the last ten years, he has produced over 360 video essays. His award-winning film TRANSFORMERS: THE PREMAKE screened at several festivals and was named one of the best documentaries of 2014 by Sight & Sound. He regularly works together with filmmaker and media artist Chloé Galibert-Laîné.
Laila Pakalniņa graduated from the Moscow Film Institute (VGIK), Department of Film Direction, in 1991. A director and scriptwriter of 32 documentaries, 5 shorts, and 6 fiction features, altogether she has 43 films, 2 children, 1 husband, 2 dogs and 2 bicycles. And many ideas for new films! Her films have screened in official programmes at Cannes, Venice, Berlinale, Locarno, Karlovy Vary, Rome, Tallinn and other international festivals, where they have won numerous awards.
Nadav Lapid is a film director and a writer, born in Tel Aviv. He studied philosophy at the University of Tel-Aviv, French literature at Saint Denis University, and cinema at Sam Spiegel film school. His feature films have won prestigious awards in Cannes, Berlin and Locarno, as well as more than 100 awards all over the globe. His shorts and medium-length films have premiered in Cannes, Berlin and the New York Film Festival. An American remake was made of his second feature, THE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER. Nadav was a jury member in Berlin, Venice, Cannes (Critics’ Week) and Locarno Film Festival, and retrospectives of his films have been held in Toronto, Moscow, Paris, Harvard and Oxford university, and many other places. His novel Keep on Dancing was translated into several languages. Nadav has worked as a football journalist, a wedding cameraman and a security agent.
Vladimir Nadein is a producer, curator and actor born in Moscow, Russia in 1993. He was a co-curator of the Russian Pavilion at the 17th Venice Architecture Biennale 2021. Vladimir is a producer of Ekaterina Selenkina’s feature film Detours, which had its world premiere at the 36th Venice International Film Critics’ Week. In 2019 the film received a Script and Project Development award from the Hubert Bals Fund and the Eurimages Lab Project Award at Les Arcs Film Festival 2019. In 2016, he co-founded Moscow International Experimental Film Festival (MIEFF). He was a co-curator of Extracurricular Practices, which formed part of the educational programme at the VII Moscow International Biennale for Young Art. He has curated film programmes for the Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, the Lumiere Gallery, the University of California, Los Angeles, Hamburg Short Film Festival, the Moscow Jewish Film Festival, Panorama and other venues. Vladimir graduated from the acting department of the Moscow Art Theatre School in 2013. He currently lives and works in Moscow.
Georg Seeßlen was born in 1948, and studied painting, art history and semiology in Munich. A lecturer at various universities in Germany and abroad, Seeßlen today works as a freelance author for Die Zeit, taz, epd-Film, Freitag, and as a curator of film/art series and exhibitions. He has also written around twenty books on film. Together with Markus Metz, he creates radio features and radio plays.
André Antônio was born in Recife, Northeast Brazil, in 1988. He worked as a film editor before founding, together with some filmmakers friends, the independent queer film collective Surto & Deslumbramento (deslumbramento.com). In 2015, his first feature, THE CULT, premiered at Rio de Janeiro International Film Festival and was exhibited in many festivals around the world such as Queer Lisboa, Göteborg Film Festival Outfest Los Angeles and NewFest – New York’s LGBT Film Festival. His new film, VENUS IN NYKES, premiered in October 2021 at FIC Valdavia, Chile, and was selected for Chéries-Chéris Paris and Mix Brasil. André is now preparing to shoot his second feature, SALOMÉ.
Júlio Bressane (1946, Brazil) started his film career as assistant director to Walter Lima Jr. and directed his first feature film, CARA A CARA, in 1967, becoming an important figure in Brazil’s Cinema Marginal. He founded the production company Belair Movies in 1970, together with Rogério Sganzerla, before moving to London in exile. Bressane’s poetic and essayistic work is among the most exemplary of Brazilian experimental cinema, concentrating especially on the relationship between picture and soundtrack. He received the Bastone Bianco Award for DIAS DE NIETZSCHE EM TURIN (2001) at the Venice Film Festival. In 2008, he received the honorary Eduardo Abelin Trophy at Gramado Film Festival. EDUCAÇÃO SENTIMENTAL (2013) premiered at Locarno Film Festival and was nominated for a Golden Leopard. NIETZSCHE SILS MARIA ROCHEDO DE SURLEJ had its world premiere at IFFR 2019.
Chloé Galibert-Laîné is a French researcher and filmmaker, currently working as a post-doctoral researcher at the Lucerne School of Art and Design – HSLU in Switzerland. Her work explores the intersections between cinema and online media, with a particular interest for questions related to modes of spectatorship, gestures of appropriation, processes of knowledge production and mediated memory. Her films have been presented at venues including IFFRotterdam, FIDMarseille, Ji.hlava IDFF, True/False Festival, transmediale, EMAF, Kasseler Dokfest and Ars Electronica Festival.
Christopher Small is a writer, filmmaker, and festival programmer, originally from the United Kingdom and currently based in Prague, Czech Republic.
Almudena Escobar López
Almudena Escobar López is a curator, archivist, and researcher from Galicia. She is the Assistant Curator of Media Arts at the Memorial Art Gallery (MAG) in Rochester, NY. She is completing her Ph.D. in Visual and Cultural Studies at the University of Rochester. As a guest curator, Almudena has curated and co-curated a number of film and video series which have been presented at Anthology Film Archives, Alchemy Film & Moving Image Festival, Muestra Internacional Documental de Bogotá, UnionDocs, ICDOCS, Visual Studies Workshop, Cineteca Nacional de México, Alternative Film/Video, among others. She was program advisor of the 2020 edition of Art of the Real at the Film Society of Lincoln Center, and more recently has joined the programming committee of Media City Film Festival. With Sky Hopinka, she is the co-curator of the 2022 Flaherty Film Seminar.
Adam Khalil, a member of the Ojibway tribe, is a filmmaker and artist from Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, whose practice attempts to subvert traditional forms of image-making through humor, relation, and transgression. Khalil is a core contributor to New Red Order and a co-founder of COUSINS Collective. Khalil’s work has been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, Sundance Film Festival, Walker Arts Center, Lincoln Center, Tate Modern, HKW, Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit, Toronto Biennial 2019 and Whitney Biennial 2019, among other institutions. Upcoming exhibitions will be held at Kunsthal Charlottenborg in Copenhagen and Spike Island in Bristol. Khalil is the recipient of various fellowships and grants, including but not limited to a 2021 Creative Capital Award, Herb Alpert Award, Sundance Art of Nonfiction, Jerome Artist Fellowship, Cinereach and the Gates Millennium Scholarship.
Fabian Saul, born in 1986, is an author, composer and editor-in-chief of the multi-award-winning magazine Flaneur. The magazine, which dedicates each issue to one street in the world, follows a collaborative and interdisciplinary approach, which is also reflected in Saul’s work. In addition to his writing, he works as a composer of film music and literary audio works as well as a songwriter. He studied philosophy and cultural studies. He lives in Berlin, but his work regularly takes him to other places. In 2018, his first book “Boulevard Ring” was published by Matthes & Seitz, followed by his debut novel “Die Trauer der Tangente” there in 2023. His work has been awarded the Alfred Döblin Medal and the Roger Willemsen Scholarship.
Bayley Sweitzer is a filmmaker living and working in Brooklyn, whose practice revolves around an ongoing attempt to repurpose narrative film form in order to convey radical political possibilities. His work has been shown at Film at Lincoln Center, Walker Art Center, Tate Modern, Berlinale, Anthology Film Archives, Bozar in Brussels, Pacific Film Archive, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Other Cinema in San Francisco, and Artists Space in New York City. Sweitzer has received recent moving image commissions from the Park Avenue Armory in New York City, Gasworks in London, and Spike Island in Bristol. Sweitzer also works professionally as a focus puller and is a member of the International Cinematographers Guild, IATSE Local 600.
Ana Tapia Rousiouk
Acousmate apprentice and a part-time filmmaker of Ecuadorian and Ukrainian origin, Ana Tapia Rousiouk is challenged by the adventure of listening: that of our time and its turbulent zones. Some thorns on the way: brooming the affirmative mists, the sad coherences, the murderous cradles. Exploring the backstages of listening, of hearing phenomena on the air, and of music – their loyal opponent.
Born in the Laurentian countryside, Renaud Després-Larose studied philosophy in Montreal before choosing to devote himself to cinema. He has held various positions (producer, director of photography, editor) on productions of short and independent feature films. In 2011 he produced and directed his first feature film, COMME DES MOUCHES. Since 2015, he has been a member of the editorial board of Hors Champ, the very first online French-language cinema review from Canada. THE DREAM AND THE RADIO is the second feature film that he produced and directed as an author.
Called “Brilliant, one of the most provocative artists in film today” by The Los Angeles Times, and a “Cinematic Sorceress” by The New York Times, Menkes’ films synthesize inner dream worlds with brutal, outer realities. Her work has been shown widely in major international film festivals, including Sundance (four feature premieres), the Berlinale, Locarno, Toronto, and MOMA in NYC. She has had numerous international retrospectives and her early work has been selected for restoration by the Academy Film Archive and Scorsese’s Film Foundation. Menkes is a Fulbright and Guggenheim Fellow and on the film faculty at California Institute of the Arts.
Dea Kulumbegashvili was born and raised in Georgia. She studied film directing at Columbia University School of the Arts and Media Studies at The New School in New York. Her debut short film, INVISIBLE SPACES, was nominated for a Palme D’Or for short film at Cannes in 2014. LETHE premiered as part of the short film programme at Cannes Directors’ Fortnight in 2016 and was nominated for a Tiger Award. Her feature debut, BEGINNING (2020), premiered in Toronto, where it won the FIPRESCI Prize. The film also won the Jury Prize, the Silver Seashell and the Golden Seashell in San Sebastián.
Jasper Sharp is an author, filmmaker and curator known for his work on Japanese cinema and the co-founder of the film website Midnight Eye. His books include The Midnight Eye Guide to New Japanese Film (2004), joint-written with Tom Mes, Behind the Pink Curtain (2008) and The Historical Dictionary of Japanese Cinema (2011). His work has appeared in publications including Sight & Sound, The Guardian, The Japan Times, and Film International, and on numerous home video releases. Between 2010 and 2014 he was the director of Zipangu Fest, a London-based festival dedicated to showcasing Japanese independent cinema, and was the Artistic Director of the Asia House Film Festival between 2014 and 2016. He is the co-director with Tim Grabham of THE CREEPING GARDEN (2014), an award-winning documentary about plasmodial slime moulds, and currently works as a disc producer for Arrow Films.
Skadi Loist studied American Literature and Culture and Media Studies with some Art History and Gender/Queer Studies at the University of Hamburg and Smith College in Northampton/MA, USA. After working on a PhD project for two years with a scholarship from the DFG Graduate School in Frankfurt/Main, Skadi returned to the Institute for Media and Communication at the University of Hamburg as Lecturer and earned a PhD with a thesis on queer film festivals and film culture in 2015. Between 2014 and 2017 Skadi was a lecturer at the Institute for Media Research at the University of Rostock and is Principle Investigator for the research project “Film Circulation on the International Film Festival Network and the Impact on Global Film Culture” funded by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF, 2017-2021).Since February 2018, Skadi has been working as professor at the interdisciplinary post for Production Cultures in Audiovisual Media Industries, first as Visiting Professor, since October 2020 as Assistant Professor (Juniorprofessor). Starting April 2021 Skadi is lead PI for „GEP Analysis: Assessing, Understanding, and Modeling the Impact of Gender Equity Policies (GEP) in the Film Industry“ (DFG/ESRC/SSHRC, 2021-2024).Furthermore, Skadi is founder of the Film Festival Research Network(FFRN); chair of the Media Industries workgroup at the Gesellschaft für Medienwissenschaft (GfM); Steering Committee member of the European Network for Cinema and Media Studies (NECS) and Editorial Board member of NECSUS: European Journal of Media Studies.
Pascale Bodet has studied art history and directed, among other films, SIX-PIECE SUIT(E) (COMPLET 6 PIÈCES) and LIGHT HANDLING (MANUTENTION LÉGÈRE), two wry variations on the world of work; NO KEY (PORTE SANS CLEF), a fiction feature on the various forms of the act of welcoming; and five portraits: THE ART (L’ART), on an amateur gardener, ABUNDANCE (L’ABONDANCE), on a clam fisherman, THE SQUARE OF FORTUNE (LE CARRÉ DE LA FORTUNE), on the writer and actor Michel Delahaye, NEARLY A CENTURY (PRESQUE UN SIÈCLE), on her grandma and her grandma’s neighbor, and BALEH-BALEH, the portrait of a friend. EDOUARD AND CHARLES (VAS-TU RENONCER ?) is the story of two artists, saved by a stranger with a knack for friendship.
Norbert Pfaffenbichler (*1967) is a Vienna based artist, filmmaker and curator. He actually works on a dystopian and surreal movie trilogy with the title 2551.
Hannah Pilarczyk was born in Hamburg in 1977. After working for the taz and NEON, she joined the culture department of SPIEGEL/SPIEGEL ONLINE in 2009 as an editor. Member of the Advisory Board of the Verband der deutschen Filmkritik, the Marburger Kamerapreis and the Board of Trustees of the Haus des Dokumentarfilms. Lectureships in online journalism and film criticism. Publications include: “Ich hatte die Zeit meines Lebens. Der Film ‘Dirty Dancing’ und seine Bedeutung” (Verbrecher Verlag, 2012).
Born in 1967 in Porz (now Cologne); studied art history, theatre, film and television studies and German studies in Bochum and Cologne. While still at school, he wrote his first cultural reviews for the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger; during his studies, he worked as a freelance feature writer, among others for “film-dienst”, “Die Zeit” and F.A.Z. From 2001 to 2002, he worked as a film editor for the Frankfurter Rundschau; since then, he has been a freelance journalist and book author. Awards: Prize for Visual Film Criticism of the German Camera Association, 2003. Siegfried Kracauer Prize (honourable mention, 2020, scholarship 2021). Book publications (selection) Reworking the American Dream. The director Robert Redford. Marburg 1998; The Ruin of the Future. Metropolis 2010 – Fritz Lang’s restored classic. Cologne 2010 with Robert Nippoldt: Hollywood in den 30er Jahren. Hildesheim 2010; as editor and co-author: The Walt Disney Film Archives. The Animated Movies 1921-1968. Cologne 2016; German edition: Das Walt Disney Filmarchiv. The Animated Movies 1921-1968. Mickey Mouse, The Complete History, Cologne 2019 (German: Mickey Mouse, Die komplette Chronik).
Jan Soldat was born 1984 in Karl-Marx-Stadt (now Chemnitz) in the former GDR. From 1994 he attended the humanistic grammar school ”Hohe Straße” (now Karl-Schmidt-Rottluff Grammar School). In 2003, after graduating from high school and completing community service on the gastroenterological and dialysis ward in the Klinikum Chemnitz, he started studying business mathematics at the TU Chemnitz. In 2004, he dropped out and switched to mechanical engineering. At the beginning of 2006, he left this course also, then returned to the Klinikum Chemnitz as a nursing assistant in the cardiac catheter laboratory. From August 2006 to February 2007, together with Frank Schubert, he made his first films as part of the SAEK (Saxon training and testing channel). At the same time, he worked within the Chemnitzer Kunstfabrik. There, too, films were produced and he interacted with young and adult people with mental and physical disabilities. Until September 2008, he made more films within the Chemnitzer Filmwerkstatt e.V. From October 2008 to March 2014, he studied film and television directing at the University of Film and Television “Konrad Wolf”, Potsdam Babelsberg. In 2015 he also started to work as an editor and dramaturgical consultant. To date, his more than 90 films, mostly documentary works, deal with the portrayal of diverse sexual practices and preferences.
Juan Rodrigáñez (b. Madrid, 1971) studied American anthropology at the Complutense University of Madrid. After participating in projects, such as an art gallery in Granada in the ’90s and a poetry review in the 2000s, his cinematographic work began with the short film A LA SIERRA DE ARMENIA, which premiered at Zinebi in Bilbao (2008). His first two feature films, DER GELDKOMPLEX (EL COMPLEJO DE DINERO) (2015) and DERECHOS DEL HOMBRE (2018) screened at Berlinale Forum, FIDMarseille, IndieLisboa, Gijón IFF, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival, FICUNAM and Hong Kong IFF. He is currently preparing his third feature film, LOS ERIZOS, which is to be shot this autumn, and he is participating in the launch of an artistic, educational and cultural platform that, from the Extremadura region, puts the Earth at the center of its activities.
Eyal Weizman is Professor of Spatial and Visual Cultures and founding director of the Centre for Research Architecture at Goldsmiths, University of London. In 2010 he founded the research agency Forensic Architecture and directs it ever since. The work of the agency is documented in the exhibition and book FORENSIS (Sternberg, 2014), as well as in Forensic Architecture: Violence at the Threshold of Detectability (Zone/MIT, 2017) and in numerous exhibitions world wide. In 2007 he set up, with Sandi Hilal and Alessandro Petti, the architectural collective DAAR in Beit Sahour/Palestine. This work is documented in the book Architecture after Revolution (Sternberg, 2014). In 2013 he designed a permanent folly in Gwangju, South Korea which was documented in the book The Roundabout Revolution (Sternberg, 2015). His other books include The Conflict Shoreline (Steidl and Cabinet, 2015), Mengele’s Skull (Sternberg, 2012), The Least of all Possible Evils (Verso, 2011), Hollow Land (Verso, 2007), A Civilian Occupation (Verso, 2003). Weizman is on the editorial board of Third Text, Humanity, Cabinet and Political Concepts and is on the board of directors of the Centre for Investigative Journalism (CIJ) and on the Technology Advisory Board of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague. He previously sat on the advisory boards of the ICA in London and B’Tselem in Jerusalem, amongst others. He graduated in architecture in 1998 from the Architectural Association in London and completed his PhD at the London Consortium/Birkbeck College in 2006.
Diedrich Diederichsen, professor of theory, practice and mediation of contemporary art at the Institute of Art and Cultural Studies, Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna. Latest book publications: Cybernetics of the Poor (co-ed.); Liebe und Ethnologie – zur kolonialen Dialektik der Empfindlichkeit (nach Hubert Fichte); Körpertreffer – Zur Ästhetik der nachpopulären Künste; Über Pop-Musik; The Whole Earth – Kalifornien und das Verschwinden des Außen (co-ed. with Anselm Franke), The Sopranos. Published regularly in tageszeitung, Art Forum, theater heute, among others. For a detailed list see: http://diedrich-diederichsen.de
Matías Piñeiro was born in Buenos Aires, in 1982. A screenwriter and director, he lives in New York. During the last ten years, he has been developing a cycle of films based on the female roles in William Shakespeare’s comedies called THE SHAKESPEAREADS. He is also a film professor and a film programmer. He is currently working with Gallicean filmmaker Lois Patiño on ARIEL, a feature film based on Shakespeare’s “The Tempest”.
Lois Patiño was born in Vigo, Spain, in 1983. A filmmaker and artist living in Madrid, his films and video installation works investigate the contemplative experience and the relationship between people and landscapes. His works have been shown in film festivals as Berlinale, Locarno, Rotterdam,Toronto or NYFF; and at art fairs as ARCO, Paris Photo, Photo London, Unseen or the Aichi Triennale.
Lilith Stangenberg, born in Berlin in 1988, began her career in youth theater at the Volksbühne am Rosa-Luxemburg-Platz and was subsequently engaged at Schauspiel Hannover and Theater Basel. From 2009 to 2012, Lilith Stangenberg was a permanent ensemble member of the Schauspielhaus Zurich, before she moved to the Volksbühne Berlin. There, she played important roles under the direction of Frank Castorf, René Pollesch and Christoph Marthaler, among others, and made guest appearances at the Wiener Festwochen, the Deutsches Schauspielhaus Hamburg and the Salzburg Festival. In recent years, she has also appeared in front of the camera for various film projects. In 2016, for example, she played the leading role in the feature film WILD by Nicolette Krebitz, for which she received the Günter Rohrbach Film Prize as well as the German Film Critics’ Award for Best Actress. In addition, she has played roles in other feature films such as IDIOTEN DER FAMILIE (director: Michael Klier), ICH WAR ZU HAUSE, ABER… (director: Angela Schanelec). Last year, Stangenberg also appeared in front of the camera for the feature film BLUTSAUGER by Julian Radlmaier and starred in LOVE IS A DOG FROM HELL by Filipino filmmaker Khavn de la Cruz and ORPHEA (directed by Alexander Kluge and Khavn). In 2019, Lilith Stangenberg made a remake of Liliana Cavani’s THE NIGHT PORTER with artist Paul McCarthy. In 2021, she played John Malkovich’s wife alongside him in Robert Schwentke’s film SENECA – ON THE CREATION OF EARTHQUAKES, and she is collaborating again with Filipino filmmaker Khavn in the film MAKAMISA – PHANTASM OF REVENGE.
Douglas Candano holds a BA in Development Studies from the Ateneo de Manila University and a Masters of Urban Planning degree from McGill University. His fiction has won several national-level awards and have appeared in numerous publications and books. Apart from a side career as one of the country’s top competitive eaters, he works as a research consultant for social development programs. He also co-wrote Orphea (Berlinale 2020) with Khavn and Alexander Kluge.
Azul Aizenberg (b. Buenos Aires, 1993) is a filmmaker, and a graduate from the Universidad del Cine in Buenos Aires. She founded the amateur film workshop Ver y Poder, and she has written and directed the short films LAST LAND (2016), AMIGA (2019) and THE STONEBREAKERS (2021). She is currently editing her first feature film, DISPOSABLE LOVE.