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My Life without Nitrate lecture, Alexander Horwath; Rouen, Martyre d'une Cité, Die Todesmühlen (Death Mills) screenings
Saturday, May 6, 2017 @ 15:00–16:00
In the Dryden Theatre, Alexander Horwath will present a lecture titled My Life without NitrateRouen, Martyre d'une Cité (Louis Cuny, France 1945, 15 min.), and Die Todesmühlen (Death Mills, Hans Burger, U.S. 1945, 22 min.): "Both films address the destructive consequences of World War II. Rouen is about the 'martyrdom of a city'; Todesmühlen is the most important postwar re-education film made by the Allied Forces, showing to the German and Austrian population the horrors of concentration camps.".
A leader and a source of inspiration in the museum world, Alexander Horwath has worked internationally as a curator of exhibitions, film retrospectives, and festivals; as a lecturer on film at universities and cultural institutions; as a consultant and jury member at film festivals; and as a member of film subsidy boards. Since 2002, he has served as director of the Österreichisches Filmmuseum (Austrian Film Museum). He has been a member of the Akademie der Künste (Academy of Arts, Berlin) since 2012 and a corresponding member of the Vienna Secession since 2008. Previously, he was director of the Viennale (1992—1997) and curator of film at Documenta 12 in Kassel (2007). Eloquently outlining the principles behind his curatorial efforts, Horwath has stated, "The Austrian Film Museum has the policy of exhibiting moving image works in their respective medium—meaning the way in which they originally entered the world: the 'language' in which they expressed themselves at the time of production and publication. . . . This is what museums do—and why they exist in the first place: to give access to cultural artifacts in a manner that keeps them legible and transparent, especially if these artifacts are no longer part of everyday life or mainstream industrial practice. . . . By continuing to give access to film as film, a film museum also partakes in a tradition that has supported human culture for many centuries: the notion that our heritage can actually remain generative, potent, and procreative in relation to future artistic achievements. For this to happen, our cultural techniques have to be preserved as working systems, and our artifacts need to remain in a shape that can be 'read' by these systems. Only then will they continue to make sense."
[source: Nitrate Picture Show program, 2017-May-5]