Lookout: The Experimental Film & Video Program
Every generation has a constitutive image. Munch’s “The Scream”, the Atom Bomb mushroom cloud, Dolly the Sheep, the collapse of the Twin Towers. Our generation seems to have not one constitutive image, but countless non-constitutive ones. These are created and reproduced almost immediately on various digital platforms, establishing a definitive moment in time, then disappearing as quickly as they appeared.
Amongst Netflix binging and browsing randomly on Instagram, multi-participant conversations on Zoom and badly edited videos on TikTok, the way we consume images seems to have significantly changed. The gluttonous consumption of imagery that characterizes this era challenges the conventional notions of cinema, making the archetypal narratives on which it is based redundant, while simultaneously creating new syntax and visual representations.
A look at the works participating in this year’s “Lookout: The Experimental Film & Video Program” competition for video and experimental cinema reveals a new generation of artists who have grown up on a hyperactive, fragmented and dispersed sociocultural foundations. However, it is rare to find in their works nostalgia for a naïve and slower era. They devote themselves to the complexity that characterizes an exact moment, without trying to alleviate the feelings of anxiety and uncertainty associated with it.
These films have stemmed from various thought and work processes. As such, they present a wide range of themes and styles. However, it is difficult not to notice the motifs that run like a thread between them: themes of shattering familiar myths, a widespread occupation with popular culture, or expressing the foreboding human body as the arena of struggle between personal and political forces.
Some of the works were created with an image of “the white cube” in mind, and were previously presented in neutral, sterile, white spaces typical of contemporary art installations. Their appearance on The Big Screen, in the ceremonial prestige of the dark hall and crowded audience, forces us to revisit the question: The Cinema, where do we go from here?
The program was produced thanks to the generous donation of Miki Roitman.