(weblogs.vpro.nl/beingthere), speaking to us via Skype from Hong Kong. She shows a presentation called "new distribution for public television" about a few recent experiments. According to her, the Internet has made her job of getting a film out to its audience much easier (see for example: www.hollanddoc.nl/kijk-luister/documentairemakers/bregtje-van-der-haak.html). She released several documentaries (from her 2009 transmedia project on urbanization) under a Creative Commons license as a free download; these were also published as a DVD box, as well as being sold for TV broadcasting, and archived online. There were 45,262 downloads (from 183 countries), and after a year and a half there are still 5 downloads per day. The BitTorrent download was featured for several days on the main page of Mininova (www.mininova.org), which explains the high number of downloads. This means that more than 45,000 extra viewers could be reached, without having to spend any money on distribution. The second movie "Gurgaon" was downloaded less often, but is still being downloaded more than 20 times a day. (Although, when I checked, it had only 4 or 5 "seeds" on Mininova, whereas the other documentary mentioned had over 30.)
Distribution through BitTorrent is very successful -- and it is truly global distribution. Interestingly, there is no negative effect on TV or DVD sales (which shows that the audiences for these media are simply not the same as those on BitTorrent, I guess). There is an astounding amount of activity by users who add subtitles (and do translation). There are copyright issues, though -- for instance, the BitTorrent version of the third movie discussed here, "California Dreaming", doesn't include the famous song bearing the same title, because the rights were not cleared. Such copyright issues are thus a real obstacle to using BitTorrent for legal distribution.
Getting the audience to see the stuff
Florian Cramer plays the devil's advocate: van der Haak is in a comfortable situation, as her documentaries are financed by public television. She counters by stating that, precisely because the movie was made with public money, it is her obligation to get it out to as many people as possible. She is arguing from the (realistic) point of view that this public money is being handed out to create quality content; and not, as in the old days, strictly for "public distribution on the public television channel". And she is right -- but the question is, of course, how long will governments remain willing to put money into this kind of production? Hopefully, governments nowadays will understand that financing public content does not automatically translate into producing content to be shown exclusively on an old-fashioned public television channel.
Pummell stresses that, when you're funded with public money, the obligation is not to monetize your production, but to make sure that the content gets out there. On the other hand, it's true that torrents are largely an invisible and anonymous thing: all you can do is upload your documentary and then wait, until months later it's been downloaded 45,000 times, or only 5,000. So an essential question is: how to make the most of environments such as torrent sites?
Next is Paul Keller's presentation (www.kennisland.nl/over-kennisland/mensen/paul-keller). Keller is, among other things, a key figure in the Creative Commons project in the Netherlands. (Also, something not mentioned here: he has unlimited "street cred" as a former bike messenger, one of the first in Amsterdam to use a track bike (aka "brakeless fixie") for the job (www.mediamatic.net/page/147474/en).)
He starts by showing the splash page of the Net Congestion conference, from almost ten years ago (net.congestion.org) -- which is still online. The
The rest of his presentation focuses on the crowd-funding model for financing, which was used for animation films such as "Elephants Dream", "Sintel", and "Bick Buck Bunny" -- all created using open-source software called Blender (www.blender.org), with production closely integrated to software development. Blender is a great piece of software, and the movies are all well-crafted animations -- but they're hardly peaks of contemporary filmmaking. Yet they are certainly showcases in how to use BitTorrent for distribution, Creative Commons for licensing, as well as open-source software and crowd funding. Another example is "Steal this Film" (www.stealthisfilm.com/Part2), by Jamie King (www.jamie.com/about) who later started vodo.net, another torrent platform. Keller presents several examples of "pledging", which has been used successfully (in another medium) by the band Nine Inch Nails, and he shows how it functions on sites such as www.kickstarter.com. All interesting and valuable strategies for financing -- and there are many websites copying this idea, even the mainstream Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunst, which has set up www.voordekunst.nl. Keller shows more examples of funding, such as www.flattr.com, a micro-payment service which until now has only caught on in Germany, where it is being used by blog platforms as well as the TAZ daily newspaper.
He also shows how a service such as www.mubi.com is not really functioning, as most of the films in its impressive catalogue can't be watched online from Europe. Which simply leads one to try and find the movie through, let's say, semi-legitimate underground channels. (Interestingly, there is still no legitimate "library" of online movies one can watch, though most of the stuff is easily downloadable through somewhat shadier channels.) He ends by showing a new service by the Dutch public broadcaster VPRO: an app for the Apple store.
All of this (together with this morning's presentations) leaves me wondering: how can all these services be deployed to foster a film culture? I know where to download what I want, but how does this become a valuable culture, beyond people swapping movies?
Pummell asks whether the financing models that Keller has been showing us, are scalable to larger productions -- most crowd-funded productions are in the 5,000 to 20,000 Euro range, which is very small for film. Keller thinks it won't be suitable for blockbuster production, but it is possible to get into the low end of big film production. The model of crowd funding is: get your financing first, then produce (just like books in the 17th century: a subscription model).
Florian asks the question that so many Blender fans hate to hear -- why Blender successfully deploys the open-source Linux model, only to produce what is essentially a copy of commercial blockbusters… Keller adds that as far as Blender developers are concerned, this is because they want to measure themselves to that standard: they want to show that their animations can be as good as Pixar's.
(Keller also mentions that he thinks public funding is important and necessary, which is why he is not so happy that the Amsterdam Fonds voor de Kunst has started a website for crowd funding.)
Turns out that kickstarter do some curating themselves -- not just any project can be posted up there. Which is a wise thing probably, otherwise it will just be a long list of failed projects… Currently, about 1/3 of the films on the list are successful (which I think is quite high). Josephine Bosma reminds us that it was actually RTMark (the Yes Men before the Yes Men) who were among the first to set up such a model, which they used for activism. She emphasizes that, unless you have a community "behind" you, your project will not be crowd-funded.
Wrapping up the first day
To wrap up, Cramer attempts to connect the two panels of the first day. His question is: one year from now, would we have to scrap the two panels, to bring them together as one panel? Someone from the audience responds by raising the question: does Internet distribution change the form and aesthetics of film -- for instance, for a filmmaker like Bregtje van der Haak? He also wonders, to which extent filmmaking has become an individual enterprise -- since using the Internet emphasizes an individual approach. Should we find a new aesthetics?
Finally, Paul Keller relates the characteristic frustration of the Internet user: picking up the programme of Cinema Nova in Brussels (part of the Kino-climates network) and seeing what he is missing -- loving the programme, and wishing it could be available online, so he could be a part of that culture… and being irritated that it is not. Putting such programmes online -- and of course settling the rights issues -- is something that has to happen soon… I agree. Curating and good programming are (still) crucial.
Imagine an Audience Day 2, 01022011, a semi-live report
The second day focuses more on filmmaking in the fine arts, and the strings attached to that… The first panel is moderated by Edwin Carels -- who worked on preparing the conference and came up with the title: Imagine an Audience. Many in the audience were not present yesterday, so Florian kicks off with a short recap of the first day.
On the panel are John Smith, Luke Fowler and Michel Chevalier. Each one does a short (10-minute) presentation, after which "the real discussion and fighting" can begin.
Luke Fowler (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luke_Fowler), (lux.org.uk/collection/artists/luke-fowler), (spikeart.at/index.php?option=com_magazine&func=show_article&id=104&lang=en), speaking with a beautiful Scottish voice, gives a brief introduction to his life as an artist. He has been quite fortunate to have his work shown both in art galleries and at film festivals. He has always resisted the new media -- the Internet -- as a way of distributing work.
One of his "seminal" moments as an artist was a friend giving him a videotape of "Wavelength" by Michael Snow. As he watched it alone in his flat in Dundee, he felt alienated, not knowing what to think of it -- knowing nothing about the film or its context. (VHS also not being the right format for this film.) To him, a community is essential if one is to understand new ways of dealing with audiovisual content. British public television in the '80s and '90s was also an influence, particularly the documentaries shown there -- in the days before the decline of television programming. He also saw the work of Douglas Gordon in Glasgow. At that time he was not involved in the discourse of video art -- not part of that community -- and he found much of video art self-indulgent. He was looking for a way of making film that was less solipsistic, and would relate more to life. This is when he made his film "What You See is Where You're At" about a psychiatric experiment -- a film constructed mainly from interviews, using archive footage. He wasn't particularly self-conscious about the form; because the film deliberately lacks a coherent narrative, it can be seen as challenging dogmatic ideas of documentary filmmaking.
Then his 10 minutes are over. He hasn't even said a word about his later films.
Fowler says that seeing a film in the right format, showing it in the intended way, is very important for the experience. This is why he refrains from digital distribution. He is totally right in that; speaking for myself, I would go to a good screening of his films, as I know the experience (especially in sound…) will be better than watching that digital copy of his "A Grammar for Listening" which I could see, thanks to some Internet magic and human intelligence.
John Smith (www.johnsmithfilms.com) starts by showing a 1-minute movie. Smith started out at The London Filmmakers' Co-op in the seventies, at a time when many avant-garde artists were making multi-screen works. Most of his work is made with a screening context in mind, intended to be seen from beginning to end, not from middle to middle -- which is what often happens in art galleries. His first experience of having his work shown in a museum context in the seventies were not positive: brightly lit rooms, with the film played as a loop on a video monitor, making it impossible for a viewer to follow the unfolding and depth of the film.
When he was offered the possibility to show his work as an installation, his first impulse was to replicate a cinema "black box" in the gallery. It was a necessary inconvenience to show his work this way -- instead of in a cinema. It wasn't until 2004, when 15 of his films were shown as one exhibition in Magdeburg, that he changed his mind about this. He was worried about the 15 films playing as a loop and their soundtracks blending. When the exhibition was set up, he was pleasantly surprised with the blending effect (he calls it "stereophonic recomposition"). It made the films into a new experience. Until then his films had always been very precisely constructed, meant to be viewed from beginning to end, otherwise the experience would suffer. Afterwards his films became more open-ended.
He also revisited his older films; he tells of how he came to show one of his early, strictly materialistic and structural films again -- this time not as a 30-minute film, but as a two-screen installation at the RCA in London: it became a spatial rather than linear piece.
Edwin Carels asks: would you agree that you are now structuring installations and exhibitions, in much the same way as your early films were structural? Have you become also a curator of your own exhibitions? Smith answers yes -- and that he wishes to stay in control.
The third presentation is by Michel Chevalier (www.targetautonopop.org) from Hamburg. He says he'll be taking a meta-perspective, and complementing some historical facts John Smith has mentioned. Like Smith, he's reading from a prepared text for the presentation. And he's going to kick some ass.
He criticizes the art world, and the liberal market situation which it is a part of, and on which it depends -- the fact that contemporary art puts itself at the mercy of a capitalist market. Okay, he does mention Fluxus and video collectives from the sixties and seventies, which tried to change the situation of art being a bourgeois thing for bourgeois people. Then in the nineties we had Bourriaud's rhetoric, rebranding (critical) art as relational art -- which actually, as another critic said, translates as "micro-utopias for the happy few". Emerging trends of filmmaking in the fine-arts field are (in his words) the theatre of sensibility (Barney), the Duchampian remix strategy, and the Good Conscience Generators. None of which are ever stepping on the toes of curators, or ever being truly critical or political -- and always end up being safely co-opted by neoliberalism. He mentions several well-known major artists -- who are indeed part of what I would call the art-market scene (Steve McQueen, Matthew Barney, Hito Steyerl). He criticizes the fact that art exhibitions often pretend to be critical, while they are actually complicit in the very political-economic system they claim to criticize. He fiercely criticizes the big curators and the fake and empty "curator speak" (right on!), the curators acting as meta-artists, hardly paying attention to local and political contexts -- and hardly being respectful toward the artists' work, exhibiting works in such a way that soundtracks of video pieces blend to the extent that one cannot even hear what the work is about. (He's being a bit unfair here: while there are indeed curators who are pretentious meta-artists, there are also other examples.)
Join the art world, he says, if you want to combine your technological art with traditional crafts; are ready to follow the galleries' guidelines and economical models; can stomach the denaturing of your work by meta-artist curators; will toe the ideological line and support the critical retrenchment that banks and millionaires desire; and will produce works that pleasantly integrate into the domestic interiors of art collectors.
Edwin Carels: So you're saying nothing has changed since the 18th century.
Michel Chevalier: That's right.
Personally, I'd say Chevalier is right on a lot of things -- but, hey, the world is not that one-dimensional. Also, he's mainly talking about a world of contemporary visual art galleries which are (or hope to be) part of the art-market system. And that system, the star system, does exist -- but it's only a small part of what art really is…
John Smith says he almost completely agrees with Chevalier, and it's an issue that really worries him. The question for him is: as someone who makes films, he just wants people to see his work, which is why he also shows it in the fine arts world. People do come to see the work; and it might open the eyes of a few in the audience. Television (channel four in Britain) used to have such a role: opening eyes.
Luke Fowler adds: sadly enough, what Chevalier is saying is very familiar to me. He enjoyed Chevalier's rant, though he thinks it was maybe a bit overdone. He is well familiar with the sociological work of Bourdieu -- whose ideas about "cultural distinction" he says Chevalier's polemic is based on. Fowler's point is that this critique basically reinforces the very organization of art which it criticizes -- and that it is falsely homogenizes the art world, thereby ignoring all the other strands that in fact do exist. Later he adds that Chevalier's picture is very bleak and not representative -- there are better ways of doing things, and he personally has had better experiences.
Chevalier responds that there is indeed another art world -- and that he too sells DVDs. His whole point is that he does not see in the art world a solution for the problem of film funding -- not at all. In the arts scene everything is about fashion, and thus film funding from the arts world can be no more than another flavour of the month. And yes, the problem he is really trying to address is capitalism. (He is right. And what he is in fact attempting here, is to make a case for an art which makes us see the world in a fundamentally different way, with other eyes -- instead of merely an art which plays by the rules of the forces of neoliberalism.)
Someone (Pip) from the Film Gallery in Paris asks whether the film print could ever serve as a commodity, and how much it should be worth.
John Smith answers that some of his films (shot on celluloid) must be shown as film -- but that there are also many of his old films which he now actually prefers to show in a digital format. He is, as an artist, not particularly interested in selling "limited editions". But when a gallery does want to put out such an edition, he actually approaches this as an archiving opportunity: let the Tate keep a negative print, so that there's a copy preserved there (and not just in his own house).
Luke Fowler responds: there are no co-ops of artists, there are no regulations about how much a print should be paid for -- and sadly, there are at the moment no alternatives to the way in which galleries deal with this issue. It's a harsh world. It's not that there are no possible alternatives -- but currently, they simply do not exist.
Cramer summarizes the history of media and distribution, from the invention of movable type to the present day -- after which Carels mentions that the art world is currently the only place where 16mm celluloid and slide projectors are still being used. He also mentions how, for artists nowadays, use of media is a hybrid and fluid affair.
Someone from the audience says we need to talk about rights -- this is an area where the arts world has got to become smarter. There is a difference between the license for showing a film, and for selling it. And there is a celebrity culture in the art market which complicates this. So what really matters is not the material aspect (economic issues), but the immaterial side. I would have to say I agree.
Then there is more talk about crowd funding. A young filmmaker thinks that it can work, and mentions the example of two photographers who have each already published a book on Sotchi using crowd funding (I think one of the photographers he's referring to is Rob Hornstra (www.borotov.com)). The panel mentions several other examples of artists asking for money to produce their work: Brakhage (who was very poor) and Jean Renoir. Luke Fowler is sceptical about this, especially because it is not likely to favour critical, exciting or unconventional ways of art. Cramer also voices his scepticism: such uses of the Internet tend to favour a mainstream consensus.
The conventional funding of film is a world past
The final panel and round-table discussion is moderated by Simon Pummell. The panel consists of two speakers from the world of television and film, who start by giving a short presentation each. Pummell introduces Arte's Michel Reilhac (www.arte.tv/fr/70.html) and Keith Griffiths (www.screenonline.org.uk/people/id/503319/), both producers with an interest in new and innovative forms.
Reilhac starts by mentioning that, according to many people in the media world, there's no economy for independent filmmaking anymore. It's dead -- or it's become a hobby culture. This is particularly true in the USA. He believes that telling a story through moving images will never die, as it is part of what makes us human. So the problem is not in the content, but in the "interface". There is no economy for independent filmmaking -- it only survives in Europe thanks to sophisticated public funding. Europe can pretend that there's a viable economical environment for this, but it's an artificial system; this type of independent filmmaking takes place inside a bubble, and independent filmmaking worldwide -- with the exception of Europe -- operates in a vacuum.
Festivals are successful, because films are still best seen on the big screen, and they manage to draw enough audience (plus, a festival is often the only chance to see a movie in this optimal way). But economically, the whole model is simply not viable.
Also at Arte, he is witnessing a drastic decline in film funding. A production typically gets half the amount of money it would have gotten just a few years ago.
Reilhac is a big fan of transmedia storytelling, and not only because of its new aesthetic possibilities (transmedia approaches the making of the film, or narrative, for various platforms at a conceptual level -- as opposed to crossmedia, where the same narrative or film is merely presented in different forms and distributed through various formats). He also sees in the transmedia approach a solution to the problem of funding, as it enables tapping into different funding possibilities, especially branding (devising branding strategies with the industry, other than traditional advertising campaigns). As a producer he sees great possibilities in using transmedia for publicizing linear feature films.
According to me, the problem with this -- besides the talk about advertising and branding: any real transmedia production is more complex and larger than just a feature film… What we are talking about, I am afraid, is really crossmedia, where the story of (say) a computer game is also made into a feature film, or a television show -- or it is actually just a sophisticated marketing approach, making sure the merchandise is as good as the movie, or at least is well-integrated with it.
But it is of course an interesting approach -- and Arte France plans to set up a funding scheme for this. Reilhac sees it as a necessity, since the classic model is now "dead". The transmedia approach requires other partners, and new approaches -- because the Internet is now the major interface for introducing the public to independent films.
Keith Griffiths runs a production company together with Simon Field, former director of the IFFR. He produced, for instance, most of the films by the Brothers Quay. He starts by saying he wanted Reilhac to talk first, since Reilhac is an utopian -- whereas he himself is rather old-fashioned and misanthropic. He comes from a television generation, and he says (rather humorously) that he still keeps the TV on all day. Once he heard someone on TV distinguishing 5 types of film: blockbuster (economically viable); commercial feature films (under threat); the "minefield"; the "real danger" zone; and low budget. At it's at this low-budget end that he sees endless possibilities…
He gives the example of how he went about producing a film by Apichatpong Weerasethakul, by bringing together different "worlds": simultaneously with the release of the film, there was a published book, a short film on the Internet, and an installation in an art gallery. The budget was small (600,000 Euros) -- and because of the way they proceeded, the film was internationally a financial success.
He used the same approach (bringing together different "worlds") for later projects: teaming up with Time Out magazine, publishing a book, holding events at museums (featuring audience participation), etc. He also does something similar for the Museum of Loneliness -- which works exclusively with low-budget strategies. In this case the installation is a joint venture with the art world; the only real expense is for Flip cameras used in an audience-participation Internet project.
His final word: the conventional funding of film is a world past.
Reilhac reminds us of the fact that cinema owners still hold the balance of power in the film world. A film, we still seem to think, does not really "exist" until it has been shown in a cinema. And it takes 3 or 4 months after a theatrical release before a film can be offered through pay-per-view services on the Internet. It would be wise if we could stop dealing with film in this way -- and start doing things differently. And it is possible, but only at the cost of leaving the old cinema world behind, which is still a risky thing to do.
Griffiths agrees that this is a precarious situation. There won't be a US release of the Apichatpong Weerasethakul production until 9 months after its original release -- while the US is already flooded with pirated Korean DVDs of the film.
The discussion panel is now expanded to include Echo Park Film's Paolo Davanzo and Lisa Marr, as well as Mervin Espina. Marr opines that these are interesting times for film, and that this is first of all because people now have access to film equipment as well as channels of distribution.
Griffiths speculates as to whether festivals should perhaps become smaller, "disassemble" themselves (as the Edinburgh festival has done under Tilda Swinton), and bring film closer to people, away from those few cities where the festivals take place.
Reilhac: nowadays filmmaking is a process, not a product. We now must consider each film as a step in the process of developing a vision -- it doesn't end with the one "product". This is particularly true of activist documentary makers. He also states that the film world must embrace the computer games world. (Hmm, true… But hasn't it done that already? If not, then that's really strange.)
There's again more talk of crowd funding. Funny, after two days it's starting to seem like we're living in a world of crowd-funding success stories. Several people have referred to successful projects -- but what's the percentage of these as opposed to all those that didn't make it?
Florian Cramer points out a problem with the term "transmedia" -- it is being used here in a quite different way than at the Transmediale festival (www.transmediale.de) which happens to be running simultaneously with the IFFR, and has pretty much no overlap whatsoever with anything being said at this conference. Another unfortunate confusion, according to him, is the grafting of the word "storytelling" to transmedia, as it negates the fact that most transmedia works are not narrative. (He has an important point here -- one which is being heavily discussed within the whole narratology-vs-ludology debate for instance, and boils down to the question of what constitute the limits of narrative. Some people will choose to call any type of sequence "narrative".)
Pummell steps in, and -- rightly? -- says that this is a subject for a different conference.
Someone in the audience gives another account of the state of affairs in South-East Asia. It's interesting to hear that in China, as illegal Internet downloading is being shut down, more and more cinemas are being built.
Michel Chevalier finds the presentations disquieting -- they are asking the film world to adapt to the economy, whereas he believes filmmakers should make their voices heard. Do not conform to market forces, he warns, but fight for public funding, for a democratic cultural policy and agenda. He believes the film world should cherish its critical independence -- and that everything we are hearing at this conference is going against that. (And, he adds, most transmedia efforts -- especially when they have to do with branding -- amount to infantilization of the audience.)
Michel Reilhac responds that Chevalier is right in principle, and that this situation is characteristic of the tensions of our times. Within Arte itself, neoliberalism is a powerful force, and Reilhac admits to being perhaps over-pragmatic in the way he deals with it; but he disagrees that filmmakers therefore should fall back to lobbying for public funding. It is simply a question of a different time span. And embracing the games culture is not necessarily infantilization -- the younger generation increasingly relates to storytelling via games, and Reilhac feels the need to take that reality into account. He simply cannot afford to remain in what he calls "my cinephile bubble". Also, almost no one is watches Arte's experimental film slot -- which is thus under constant threat of being shut down.
(On a personal note: I would like to watch Arte's experimental film slot, but it has no podcast or downloads which I in the Netherlands can watch. I have neither a satellite dish nor cable television, and no intention of getting either of these, since they offer hardly any interesting content -- and in the world of online content I can find plenty of other good stuff).
Pummell states that the whole "transmedia" discussion is about the possibilities offered by new forms, but also about new possibilities for branding and advertising. But the way the film world approaches transmedia, I'm afraid, mostly sounds like a marketing strategy which ends up heavily influencing the form and content of the audiovisual narrative.
Cramer responds that what he's hearing from this panel sounds like bad news for traditional filmmakers (and students of film academies) who are used to working with budgets above 100,000 Euros -- while on the other hand, micro-cinema is thriving. The problem is that this old-fashioned film world, or film industry (which in Europe goes on believing that it must compete with Hollywood) is still in place -- and this obscures the fact that what we are dealing with here is in fact a completely new situation.
Lisa Marr says that there are many different kinds of film, and it's up to us to find our own voices in filmmaking, in showing films, in celebrating the community of watching films.
Which, in the end, is what it's all about.
Pummell says that this panel represented in fact a middle ground of filmmaking -- neither overly commercial and catering to the crudest forms of global capitalism, nor purely centred on an idealistic community of filmmakers.
This is where the discussion should have been wrapped up, but instead it went on -- now discussing mostly matters of financing. Reilhac reminded us of the fact that about 50% of film producers can't make a living producing films. For him, the question for this panel was: how to develop a film culture that allows people to make a living out of making films -- including low-budget films. And trying to avoid slipping towards a situation where filmmaking becomes purely a hobby. (Well, most writers don't live from their writing, certainly not from their books -- and many artists don't live from their art, etc… So what's new?)
Perhaps this last panel was a bit too disconnected from the other three. And perhaps it should have tried to touch more on subjects such as transmedia production -- though in that respect, it sounded rather like a voice from the past, desperate to catch up with a world which has already changed. Like Pummell, I also have respect for the "middle ground", the "quality programming" for larger audiences, and I certainly deplore its decline; but I'm afraid this middle ground now hardly ever reaches the audience it could be reaching, or the audience it believes itself to be producing for. People watch other stuff -- some of it micro-cinema, some of it coming through BitTorrent. The "middle ground" seems in fact painfully lacking in cultural dynamism -- trapped in the prison of the past. There are plenty of filmmakers and collective initiatives which already evolved or adapted years ago. For sure, Griffiths approaches the production of film skilfully and creatively, using all the means at his disposal. The problems of how to fund the creation of content, how to fund art, will always exist… In the end, there was too much talk about funding; maybe if the last panel would have approached the issues from the perspective of content, from the artistic point of view, it would have sounded less like a voice from a declining culture, struggling to adapt to a changed world, to a film culture which has already been profoundly transformed.
Semi-live blog written for the Piet Zwart-conference Imagine an Audience, January 2011, part of IFFR. Edited by Joe Monk.
some rights reserved