The Formative Years

Seven films by Heinz Emigholz

As a filmmaker, fine artist and journalist, Heinz Emigholz’s artistic works explore the boundary between film and the fine arts. His early films strongly influenced the international experimental film movements of the 1970s and 1980s, and are among the few German experimental films which have gained lasting international recognition. In these early films, Emigholz analyzes processes of perception by establishing a relationship between the individual image and the moving picture. The 16-mm prints of seven films, produced between 1972 and 1977, were in poor condition and have been digitally re-mastered and incorporated into an installation. The films habe been projected in a loop onto the walls of an auditorium. Because the films vary in length, new combinations of images have constantly been produced. The installation at the Hamburger Bahnhof in Berlin was accompanied by the release of these seven films on DVD with supplementary material. In a podium discussion, international guest speakers examined how experimental film history can be made accessible to all and what kind of translation efforts are necessary to introduce historic experimental and underground films to the exhibition venue. The Formative Years make an important chapter of film history visible and accessible, providing a forum to examine its most recent developments in view of the upheaval in the analogue world which preceded the digital revolution.

Artistic director: Stefanie Schulte-Strathaus
Director: Heinz Emigholz

Venues and schedule:
Hamburger Bahnhof – Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin, 11 – 21 Feb. 2010
Kino Arsenal (panel discussion), Berlin, 14 Feb. 2010
Canada, Toronto Image Festival (exhibition), 1 – 10 Apr. 2010
Belgium, Extra City, Antwerp (exhibition), September/ October 2010


Arsenal – Institut für Film und Videokunst e.V.

Potsdamer Straße 2

10785 Berlin (external link, opens in a new window)