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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition

Painting With History Theme Program: International Film Festival Rotterdam Returns to BIEFF

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Taking further the inspiring collaboration with the innovative International Film Festival Rotterdam, BIEFF offers the Romanian cinephile audience the rare opportunity to see a few of the most interesting 2016 Tiger Awards for Short Films Nominees. Focusing on cinema's role in the (re)presentation of recent history, with its intricate social and political entanglements, the theme program Painting With History relativizes notions such as reality and fiction, falsehood and truth, analysing the ways subjectivity and objectivity intertwine in constructing our personal and collective memory and identity.

Painting With History in a Room Filled With People With Funny Names 3
A full of energy and color (self-)portrait of the artist traveling freely between past and present, fiction and reality, science and dream, Painting With History In A Room Filled With People With Funny Names 3, by Thai filmmaker Korakrit Arunanondchai, explores the artist’s search for identity, at the meeting area between the East and the West. Thai Buddhism and Animism and a fair measure of technology and pop culture merge in a composite of hip-hop music video and religious ad lookalike, in a film that examines the place of spirituality in the age of globalization and digitalization.

Focusing on the concept of national representation, One.Two.Three, premiered at the 56th Venice Biennale, revisits the largely unknown role of Congolese intellectuals within the Situationist International. Together with its author and some young Kinshasa musicians, visual artist Vincent Meessen creates a new rendition of a protest song written in May 1968, inside the legendary rumba club Un Deux Trois, once home of the artistic modernity in the Congo. While popular uprisings break out in Kinshasa just outside its walls, the club becomes an echo chamber for the impasses of history.

The complete film presentations, written by Ioana Florescu and Adina Marin, are available here.
A smart and playful investigation of the very act of seeing, the competitive program The Alchemy of the Frame: Deconstructing the Image explores the endlessly unpredictable creative potential of the cinematic language.

A Brief History of Princess X
After the international premiere at the renowned International Film Festival Locarno, ever the provocateur Gabriel Abrantes returns to BIEFF with his special subversive humour, in a tongue-in-cheek phallic story about Brâncuși’s sculpture Princess X, humble and emotional tribute to the human frailty that all art hides behind its courageous surface. A Brief History of Princess X  is a chronicle of the sculptor's (in)famous work and follows the erotically-charged narrative threads that tie together the inception of the sculpture, its model (Princess Marie Bonaparte), her revolutionary studies in female sexuality and ultimately, the sculpture’s placement - and engagement with - in museums. The film is screened with the kind support of Agência da Curta Metragem.

Craving for Narrative
What do John Travolta, Olivia Newton John, Karl Marx, Jean Baudrillard, American Apparel and Bob Dylan all have in common? They’re cultural signifiers looking for a common narrative in Max Grau’s contagious essay film, «[...] craving for narrative». The filmmaker isolates a musical-narrative motif from the 1970s film Grease which he repeats it ad-infinitum, as he opens up a frank discussion of pop-culture’s infiltration in mass-consciousness. The artist's presence at BIEFF is supported by Goethe-Institut and German Films.

In Foyer, art takes to the streets, as Ismaïl Bahri walks through Tunis with his camera, capturing the city and its inhabitants. The subversive element of this artistic travelogue lies precisely in the white piece of paper that obscures the lens, creating in effect an unexpected representation of reality, which changes in shade and tone according to the whimsy of the wind. Bahri’s barrier-curtain invites new discourse on ways of seeing, in effect offering new take on Plato’s cave, where the screen becomes the agora of ideas and opinions and everything from art to economy and politics come under debate. Foyer has successfully traveled the international film festivals, being presented at Toronto, Rotterdam, FIDMarseille, New York, among others.

You Want a Story?

Awarded at Clermont-Ferrand and screened at major film festivals such as Thessaloniki and Vila do Conde, Antonin Peretjatko’s You Want A Story? is a clear affirmation of life and of cinema’s associative power of storytelling, a visual scrapbook of an unseen flâneur’s memories, whose travels around the globe are rendered with enough wit, sensuality, mystery and joie-de-vivre to rival early-Godard and Alain Robbe-Grillet’s labyrinthine storytelling.

Still Holding Still
Inspired from the 19th century photographic practice of Invisible Mothers, visual artist Sarah Vanagt investigates the very act of seeing. If photography was in the beginning perceived as witchcraft, stealing the soul of its subjects, Still Holding Still - world premiered at IDFA International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam - manages to capture that precise moment of magic when the image is born, when the soul transfer happens between the real and the photographed. Dilating the instant, the camera allows human essence to reveal itself with arresting tenderness. Beckett once said that the role of objects is to restore silence; Vanagt’s cinematic gaze restores transcendence to the real, and we, in turn, become participatory witnesses. Screening possible with the support of Argos Centre for Art and Media.

The complete film presentations, written by Andrei Tănăsescu, are available here.

The 7th edition of the Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival BIEFF is organized by Manekino Cultural Association in partnership with PRINTOR COM and Film Monitor Association.
BIEFF is honoured and grateful to receive support and inspiration from its partners: Quinzaine des Réalisateurs – Cannes Film Festival, Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art Berlin, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Cinedans – Dance on Screen Festival Amsterdam, Oberhausen International Short Film Festival, IDFA International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, Tampere Film Festival, Centre Pompidou, Le Fresnoy – Studio National des Arts Contemporains, EYE Film Institute Netherlands, Swedish Film Institute, Norwegian Film Institute, Le Pacte, The Match Factory, Sixpackfilm Austria, LIMA, LUX, Portugal Film, Agência – Portuguese Short Film Agency, Winnipeg Film Group, Swiss Films, AV-arkki, Marvin & Wayne, Some Shorts, Autour de Minuit, NISI MASA – European Network of Young Cinema, MUBI.
BIEFF would not be possible without the support of the Administration of the National Cultural Fund, Romanian National Film Center, Romanian Cultural Institute, Romanian Filmmakers's Union, National Museum of the Romanian Peasant, Embassy of France, French Institute, Goethe-Institut, Austrian Cultural Forum, Swiss Sponsors’ Fund, Embassy of Switzerland, Embassy of Sweden, Wallonia-Brussels Delegation, Italian Cultural Institute, Greek Cultural Foundation, National University of Theatre and Film Bucharest, National University of Arts Bucharest, Cinelab România, NouMax, MDV Studio, Aqua Carpatica, Domeniile Sâmburești, Hotel Venezia, Journey Pub, Lente, Sky Tour, DHL, Canopy, ZeList Monitor, Eventbook.
Media partners: Radio Guerrilla, Radio România Cultural, Agerpres, HotNews, Cinemagia, Zile și Nopți, Cinemap, Brrlog, Scena9, Decât o Revistă, Observator Cultural, Revista ARTA, Revista Zeppelin, Liternet, Ziarul Metropolis, Ziare.com, IQads, ART7, SUB25, Think Outside the Box, All About Romanian Cinema, Acoperișul de sticlă, Dissolved Magazine, The re:art, A List Magazine, Glamour România, Bucharest City App, Film New Europe.