Film Screening and Artist Talk What is the West?

What is the West? © Juliane Henrich. Courtesy of the filmmaker

Tue, 12/11/2018

19:00 - 20:30

Northwest Film Forum

Film Screening and Artist Talk with German Filmmaker Juliane Henrich

Goethe Pop Up Seattle, in partnership with the Northwest Film Forum, presents a film screening and artist talk with German filmmaker Juliane Henrich.

About the filmmaker
Juliane Henrich studied writing, art and film in Leipzig, Berlin, and Jerusalem – with Thomas Arslan, Heinz Emigholz, Avi Mograbi and others. 2012 she graduated with honors from University of the Arts in Berlin. Currently, she is an artist-in-residence at Villa Aurora, Los Angeles. Henrich’s work often deals with the changing definitions that are applied to places. The films and video-installations have been shown at international film-festivals and art exhibitions, including Berlin Film Festival (Berlinale), International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, Duisburg Documentary Film Week, ZKM Karlsruhe, Visions du Reél/Nyon, The Images Festival/Toronto, and at different Goethe-Institutes. DOC Buenos Aires and dokfilmwoche hamburg have featured her work in monographic shows.
About the films 
From the West (2016, 61 min.)
The film essay From the West opens with a child’s question of what “the West” means beyond the cardinal direction, then goes on to retrace how “the West” as a model of society, inscribed itself in the Federal Republic of Germany’s postwar history and architecture. Long panning shots through unidentified West German cities alternate with interior footage of a house being cleared out. Long drives – down highways, through suburbs and industrial zones – traverse urban sprawl and car-friendly cities to the rhythm of abstract, mellow music inspired by evening news theme tunes.

In the film’s searching movements, the narrator shifts among reflections on modern architecture and property relations, detailed scenes from childhood, and a passed-down memory of a “hemmed-in West Germany,” recalling the years of her parents’ membership in a 1970s communist splinter group. Over and over, the rallying point is the single-family home – which Konrad Adenauer and his contemporaries once touted as a bastion against the East and which Engels, much earlier, had decried as a tool for quashing rebellion. For all its deconstruction, West Germany also appears in the film as a site of childhood longing where everyone was “still tuned in to the same TV show.”

equal area / koordinaten (2018, 11 min.)
The replica of the Berlin City Palace is draped in advertising. Next to it stands the former state council building of the GDR, now a private business school. Its modern architecture contrasts with its integrated baroque entry portal – rescued from the original castle that was demolished in 1951. This is where Karl Liebknecht proclaimed the free socialist republic in 1918. koordinaten asks how history is inscribed into Berlin’s cityscape – and challenges the measuring and the distribution of the world that foregoes these changes.

The film uses the app thetruesize. This app was developed to show how distorted our perception of country sizes actually are.