VIS Vienna Independent Shorts is celebrating its 11th festival edition in 2014, showing short films from around the world at the Gartenbaukino, Stadtkino im Künstlerhaus, Schikaneder and the Austrian film museum from May 23rd to 29th, 2014.
This year, we're looking for the "radical": Teaming up with partner festivals Encounters Short Film and Animation Festival (Bristol, UK) and the Riga International Short Film Festival, we dedicate special programmes to the daring, polarizing and political cinema of outsiders - even though some might say we're in the "least radical era of cinema", with even non-mainstream-cinema being somewhat streamlined.
In addition, we're delighted to present not one, but two spotlights with the Austrian filmmuseum in its 50th year of existence. First, VIS takes the opportunity to honor Peter Konlechner, co-founder of Austria's cinematheque and initiator of the first ever "International short film week" in Vienna in 1962. The curated programs by Austrian film journalist Christoph Huber aim to show the richness and extraordinary quality of 1962's short film week - from avantgarde to animation, from wisdom to anarchy.
The second spotlight isn't dedicated to a person, but to the potential of the digital video art: Artist Robert Seidel (VIS Artist in Residence 2012) brings together international video and media artists working with digital work tools in an aesthetic and conceptional way in two programmes called "Penetrating Surfaces".
Competitions and specials
100 films are competing for awards worth more than 20,000 euros, whereas around 200 more films are featured in special programs, ranging from a focus on European cinema to the films of the late Beastie Boys frontman Adam Yauch. A newly designed Industry Day evolves around European co-productions, inviting experts to discuss best case scenarios and international developments.
The big festival opening at Gartenbaukino on May 23rd leads the way, showing the disturbing Snowballs by Harmony Korine, a world premiere of digital duo Zeitguised and a live scoring by Richard Eigner among many. Throughout the festival, we're happy to welcome filmmakers and artists from the likes of Matt Porterfield, Momoko Seto, Jennifer Reeder or Mariola Brillowska. French multimedia duo Thibault Gleize and Mihai Grecu are this year's artists in residence, working on a new video and presenting the festival's three trailers!
Music videos and long nights
Another day to look forward to is the one dedicated to music videos: Along with showing international highlights and awarding the second Österreichischer Musikvideopreis, we bring you indie bands Velojet (Austria) and BRNS (Belgium) open air live on stage at HEUER am Karlsplatz.
While the films might be short, the nights sure are long: Our Midnight Movies once again present you poppy porn and trashy Chic, while our VIS nights range from a huge Fête brut with Wiener Festwochen to a film quiz at Transporter bar.
In 2013, VIS celebrated its 10 years anniversary, receiving a record number of 2,700 film submissions and showing more than 260 films from around 40 countries at the Gartenbaukino, Künstlerhaus Kino and the Austrian film museum from May 28th to June 2nd, 2013. For the first time, a whole day was decidated to music videos, including screenings as an „expanded cinema“ experience as well as a live concert.
The festival motto Strange Days was inspired by Kathryn Bigelow’s science fiction film and featured a journey through the surreal cinema and a joint film programme with the international short film festivals of Winterthur and Hamburg, addressing the tiny everyday tremors as well as great social, cultural or geopolitical subversions.
Irish animation artist David OReilly was honored with a tribute and presented his independent films, gave a masterclass and showed „found animation“ as a carte blanche at the film museum.
Other guests included Momoko Seto and Alexei Dmitriev as artists in residence, while special programs ranged from Midnight Movies to a 10 years highlight program, lectures and a program on political filmmaking. As festival previews, VIS paid tribute to Austrian avantgarde artists Michaela Grill and Billy Roisz and released a strawberry double feature at Votivkino. Two weeks after the festival, the first ever Cat Video Festival Vienna took place at the Viennese Prater.