"Pop-Up Photo Film Masterclass" event at the Museum für Fotografie, September 1-3 2021

Museum für Fotografie

By photofilms we understand films that essentially consist of photographs. Photographs placed in a cinematic context create a filmic experience. In photofilms, the film medium is dissected into its components. Photofilm authors experiment with the relationship of text, sound and image, reflecting upon the composition of the cinematographic. During the three-day Pop-Up Photofilm – Masterclass event, three current artistic positions on photofilm as an experimental laboratory are being presented.

With their photo-filmic work as a basis, since 2000 Gusztáv Hámos and Katja Pratschke (Berlin) have explored what constitutes the difference between a still and a moving image, as well as which consequences phase-image recording has for our conception of time, space and movement.

In her video work, Miranda Pennell (London) reworks photographs from colonial archives and personal albums to create shifting experiences of time and question how we relate to the past. She probes some of the ways that merging still images within the moving image can help us to better engage with troubled histories.

By deconstructing the idea that either photography or film are entire, concrete categories without borders, Sarah Pucill (London) explores encounters within the photo-filmic that engage with performance and the close alliance of sculpture and painting. In the masterclass Sarah Pucill is examining the ways in which the photograph has played a pivotal and foundational role in the early fabrication of her filmmaking. 

The event is being moderated by Gusztáv Hámos, Katja Pratschke and Thomas Tode. Together, they have curated film series and symposia on the still image in a cinematographic context since April 2006. They are also the editors of the Viva Photofilm Moving/Non-Moving book publication (2010, Schüren Verlag). 

Event information

Event Location: Museum für Fotografie, Jebensstraße 2, 10623 Berlin 

Due to the current hygiene regulations, in order to attend the event in the Museum für Fotografie, it is necessary to register in advance by August 28, 2021 to: mf@smb.spk-berlin.de. Attendance is only permissible on presentation of the registration confirmation.

The films being presented during the masterclass can be viewed online in their complete lengths from August 30 to September 5, 2021. Only excerpts from the films will be show at the masterclass.

The masterclass is being held in English. It will be recorded, in addition to being streamed as a live event. 

In cooperation with the Concrete Narrative Society e.V. association and the Kunstbibliothek – Staatliche Museen zu Berlin.

With the kind support of Neustart Kultur and Stiftung Kunstfonds. 

Masterclass Schedule

September 1, 2021

  • 3 pm to 4.15 pm: Gusztáv Hámos, Katja Pratschke, live on location: Gusztáv Hámos and Katja Pratschke are presenting their archival project Sampling Cities (2012-2019) and contemplating upon non/archival gestures and the confrontation with the still image in a cinematographic context.

  • 4.45 pm to 6 pm: Miranda Pennell, via live feed from London: Miranda Pennell is taking her film The Host (2015) as a basis to reflect upon the interaction of personal and collective histories, as well as on the role of the artist in the history they make.  

September 2, 2021

  • 3 pm to 4.15 pm: Miranda Pennell, via live feed from London: Miranda Pennell is speaking about the challenge of deconstructing images and languages of violence in her film Strange Object (2020). In addition, she is discussing the use of science fiction as an aid for imagining the past, as well as the use of language, voice, and image/word relationships so as to understand what is not said or shown.

  • 4.45 pm to 6 pm: Part 2 – Sarah Pucill, via live feed from London: Sarah Pucill is considering various ways in which her first film You Be Mother (1990) through to Phantom Rhapsody (2010) demonstrate how the still image operates vertically in film, so serving as a disruptive force within the progression of 'moving' time. And, in turn, how this vertical disruption to the horizontal flow can serve to awaken the shift from Bergson's experience of time as duration, with the 'stilled' image serving as the 'remembered' and hence vertical moment.

September 3, 2021

  • 3 pm to 4.15 pm: Part 1– Sarah Pucill, via live feed from London: Sarah Pucill is exploring how the remembered moment as a photograph can be realised as an imagined shared moment through tableaux vivants that re-stage the Surrealist artist Claude Cahun’s photographs through two long films Magic Mirror (2013) and Confessions to the Mirror (2016). In this way the gesture of imagining a shared moment, fabricates a reimagined past out of historic remnants, in so doing offering a way to re-engage with histories.

  • 4.45 pm to 6 pm: Part 2 – Gusztáv Hámos, Katja Pratschke, live on location: Gusztáv Hámos, Katja Pratschke are utilizing their work Rope (A Dead Man's Dream) (2016), a reconstruction of the short novel An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge by Ambrose Bierce, to consider the 'stratigraphic' quality of a film image and the principle of chronophotography, as well as digital image-in-image montage strategies applied in the re-enacted photo-filmic work Rope.