Master of Film

The Master of Film lecture series

Every other Wednesday night the Master’s department of the Film Academy invites guests to come and give a lecture. Speakers can be film makers, visual artists, composers but also philosophers, scientists or film theoreticians. The aim is simple: to broaden our horizon and to get inspired by a diversity of approaches and perspectives.

The lectures are free and open to all who are interested. For most lectures a reservation won't be necessary, but if you want to be sure to have a seat: please use the online RSVP form.

Join our lectures mailinglist and we'll keep you informed!

Programme fall/winter 2014

26 November 2014

Ethics of Appropriation: Found Footage between Archive and Internet | Thomas Elsaesser

Christian Marclay's The Clock

The lecture examines different kinds of cinematic appropriation, i.e. the use of footage taken from other works, contexts, notably ‘found footage’ from archives, but also compilations of scenes and fragments from well-known films, in the spirit of homage, pastiche or parody.

As a practice that has migrated from avantgarde art (Duchamp, Braque) and filmmakers from the 1950s to 1980s (Bruce Connor, Peter Tscherkassky, Martin Arnold) to the gallery art spaces (Matthias Müller, Christian Marclay) and the Internet, cinematic appropriation also poses questions of ethics: who “owns” the (meaning and uses of such) material? Are authorship and copyright still viable concepts in the age of “free” access and over-abundance? How can archives benefit from the filmmakers’ renewed interest in their “orphans” or “bits and pieces”? Other questions are aesthetic: Which principles of montage, narration and edit(orializ)ing best permit a re-assessment of the starting material? Should re-enactments supplement the missing archive material, or are the gaps, faults and blemishes the very source of “authenticity”?

Finally, given that appropriation, in the form of mash-ups, supercuts and clips, is an increasingly popular way of posting one’s cinephile credentials, are such video-essays reflecting critically on the cinema through the cinema itself, or are the appropriators in turn appropriated by providing free publicity for the studio product and energizing just another cycle of consumption?

Thomas Elsaesser is Emeritus Professor at the University of Amsterdam, and Permanent Visiting Professor at Columbia University.

10 December 2014

Lessons in Realism: Episode of the Sea | Lonnie van Brummelen and Siebren de Haan

Still from Episode of the Sea

In this lecture, Lonnie van Brummelen and Siebren de Haan will show and discuss their latest work, 'Episode of the Sea'. In this film, premiered at the Toronto festival and screened at IDFA, Van Brummelen and De Haan profile the small, unique town of Urk that was once an island in the Zuiderzee in Holland, while simultaneously investigating the parallels between the practices of fishing and of filmmaking. The result has been described as a "playful documentary", a "rich viewing experience", a "flat-out masterpiece".

Lonnie van Brummelen and Siebren de Haan work together since 2002, producing film installations, writing, sculpture and collages that explore cultural and geopolitical landscapes such as Europe’s borders (Grossraum, 2005), sites of resource production and global trade (Monument of Sugar – how to use artistic means to elude trade barriers, 2007; Episode of the Sea, 2014), and the (non) sites of cultural heritage (Monument to Another Man's Fatherland, 2008, View from the Acropolis, 2012 and subi dura a rudibus, 2010). Most of their projects involve extensive research and long term collaborations. As part of their artistic practice, they express formal and informal research trajectories and the contingency of fieldwork in textual supplements. They do their own camera work, sound recording, production, montage, sculpting, and graphical design.

For more information about the lecturers, their work and their writings, see:
undefinedDrifting Studio Practice - From molding sugar to the unknown depths of the sea

Reviews of Episode of the Sea (TIFF)
undefinedWay Too Indie
undefinedThe Hollywood Reporter

Time & place

Date & time:
Every other Wednesday night,
19:30-21:30 hrs.

Film Academy cinema

Please use the RSVP form

Programme fall/winter 2014

Wednesday 26 November 2014
Ethics of Appropriation: Found Footage between Archive and Internet

Thomas Elsaesser

Wednesday 10 December 2014
Lessons in Realism: Episode of the Sea
Lonnie van Brummelen and Siebren de Haan

Expected in 2015:
Lorna Tee
Johan Grimonprez
Paul en Menno de Nooijer
Raymond Bellour
Ed Tan

See past events

Wednesday Night Film Screenings

On the other Wednesday nights (when there is no Master Film lecture) our Master of Film students are organizing film screenings and talks at the Film Academy cinema.

Feel free to join! All events will be announced on Facebook