A screening organized in conjunction with the UC Center for Film and Media Studies
Presenters: Michael Gott, University of Cincinnati Center for Film & Media Studies and Valentine Umansky, Curatorial Fellow of Lens-Based Arts, Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati
Doors at 6:15PM, screening at 6:45PM
Sérgio Tréfaut: Treblinka, 2016, 61’, fiction
Portuguese filmmaker Sérgio Tréfaut has used fiction and documentary techniques to tell stories in his work. Treblinka combines aspects of both, recounting the experiences of survivors on their way to the Treblinka death camp. Based on the memoirs by Chil Rajchman, Treblinka: A Survivor’s Memory, Tréfaut’s film recreates train voyages in contemporary Europe in order to question how we see—and no longer see—images of horror. Tréfaut’s approach is to suggest that voice becomes more important than image in representations of trauma. Viewers see only fleeting reflections and glimpses as the trains traverse Poland, Ukraine, and Russia while actors read translations of Rajchman’s memoirs and fragments of other conversations the director had with survivors.
Damjan Kozole, Borders, 8’, documentary
Slovenian director Damjan Kozole is best known for his 2003 film Rezervni deli (Spare Parts), which follows the perilous side of clandestine migration into Europe via the Balkans. Borders, which premiered at the 2016 Sarajevo Film Festival, is both an update of sorts to that acclaimed work and Kozole’s response to the “migrant crisis” that in Southeast Europe was reaching an apex the second half of 2015. Kozole places a camera at an angle that vividly recalls the Lumière brothers’ Arrival of a Train. Absent any narration or camera movement, Borders reflects on the ethics of representing human misery and re-stages film history.