We couldn’t wrap up our year in Amsterdam without one final diary log from the projection booths of Amsterdam. Likewise, we headed to Lijnbaansgracht to find the welcoming arthouse cinema Cinecenter, tucked in between the now legendary pop-culture venue Melkweg and the always-lively Leidseplein.
Cinecenter is an intimate arthouse cinema right in the center of Amsterdam that combines an independent and arthouse film programming with special English-subtitled screenings and film meet-ups directed to Amsterdam’s bursting community of expats. Cinecenter opened its doors for the first time in 1979 in a building originally designed by the architect Gerard de Klerk.
L-R: President Krystel Brown, Secretary Jim Wraith, Treasurer Fatma Amer and Vice-President Niamh O’Donnell.
On behalf of the 2016-2017 UvA Student Chapter Officers I would like to thank everyone for their contributions and support throughout the previous academic year and in all of our endeavours. It has been a year filled with many challenges and great opportunities and we successfully ran a series of talks, visits and travels that furthered out knowledge in the field whilst also meeting really great people.
To finish out tenure there will be one more “Booth Diaries” by Sofia Pires and we hope you enjoy her final musings and great photographs before welcoming the new officers.
To the incoming officers – we wish you all the best in your endeavours over the forthcoming year.
Photo of Guy courtesy of https://www.cognovo.eu/
Guy Edmonds was part of one of the earliest Master classes in Preservation and Presentation of the Moving Image graduating in 2006. He was worked for many years as a film restorer and archivist at EYE Film Institute, Christie’s Camera and Photographic auctions and The Cinema Museum in London, among other institutions. He is currently pursuing a doctorate at Plymouth University, in the CogNovo programme, facilitated by the EU Marie Curie initiative. His research focuses on affect and cognitive phenomena associated with moving image viewing, examining the role of projection technologies using electroencephalography (EEG) analysis. He has written extensively on early cinema, the electrophysiology of spectatorship, amateur film and projection. As well as being a member of AMIA, Guy is also a member of the Society for Cognitive Studies of the Moving Image and the artist-run film lab cooperative, Filmwerkplaats.
A review of the A teströl és a lélekröl viewing experience at Berlinale 2017
**Contains mild spoilers**
Squeezing myself in the seats of the Frederichstadt-Palast at 9am in the morning is probably not the most ideal way to start up my day in Berlinale. It was all (almost) worth it though, as I got to view the enchanting A teströl és a lélekröl (On Body and Soul) which ended up winning the Golden Bear for Best Film. As swarms of viewers -mostly 60+ year olds- gently elbowed each other in the gut to get to the better seats of the theatre I was relieved when fellow P&P student Rick made his way over so I wouldn’t have to worry about claiming the empty seat next to me anymore. The lights went off and the familiar Berlinale clip rolled on screen.
Spell Reel (2017), premiered at the Berlinale (Forum), marks the transition of the Portuguese artist Filipa César from short and medium length films and installations to feature film. Based in Berlin for seven years, César’s most recent work is the result of an extensive research project initiated by Arsenal – Institute for Film and Video Art, in the context of its Living Archive label. The project, encapsulates in practice the idea that “an archive can only be significant if it refers to the practices of the present”[i], and its approach is trifold: first, the creation of an online database; secondly, the two-year project Living Archive – Archive Work as a Contemporary Artistic and Curatorial Practice; and finally, the networking project Visionary Archive in the context of which Spell Reel was originated. Visionary Archive, defined by the institution as a “collaborative translocal experiment”[ii], aims at examining the different challenges of archival work in five distinct cinematographic contexts, namely, Cairo, Khartoum, Johannesburg, Berlin and Bissau. “What transcultural, curatorial and artistic work with archives and archival research can look like today”[iii] was the question at the core of the project that each of the five thematic projects explored in one way or another.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, I do not remember the amount of times I have heard or read how immersive the cinema experience is. How we should love and cherish the theatres for their big screens, the comfortable seats, and for the complete darkness and surround sound that make us gaze rather than glance at the moving images. Us. The audience.
But sometimes there is a lot of audience (see photo above).
Imagine being at the Berlinale and you decide to go to Europe’s biggest show palace, the Friedrichstadt-Palast, to see a premiering film that you hardly know anything about. Those 1894 seats next to yours might all be filled and it could definitely influence your cinema experience.