Movies from Kosovo | CINEMA ARMATA and beyond
Carte blanche | CINEMA ARMATA
In the course of an international cooperation, we welcome two guests from Prishtina: Alush Gashi, director of ARMATA, as well as Ilir Hasanaj, director and co-founder of the same, will present a programme of Kosovan films curated by them and talk to us about Kino ARMATA and the Kosovan film landscape on two days.
Kino ARMATA has existed in the Kosovan capital since 2018 and describes itself as a “public space, promoting alternative culture and social dialogue”. The building is state-owned and has been made available to the Prishtina municipality, which in turn leaves the programming to an independently working collective – a unique constellation in Kosovo. This enabled a reappropriation from below, after the building had served different purposes in the past. In the 1980ies, the Yugoslav army used it for film programmes, dance evenings, and cultural events (occasionally with a propagandistic ethos). With the worsening of the political situation between Serbia and Kosovo in the late 1980ies, Kosovo Albanians boycotted Serbian-supported cultural institutions until the house was closed to the public in 1988 and only internal events for Serbian clientele were held. In the 90ies it was used by the military during the Kosovo war – then after the official end of the war in 1999 by the UN for administrative purposes until 2017. Over all these years, the socialist interior of the cinema and the adjacent office buildings remained intact. The seats of the cinema are UN blue. This offers the possibility to reinterpret the cultural heritage: the community that has formed and is forming around the cinema is a living component in the classification of historical and social developments.
The two pillars of the programme are film and music. In addition to a film programme, they offer low-threshold accessible intensive courses in filmmaking, photo-graphy and audio production with the Neo_School platform. There is also the critical film club Kineto and the tape and vinyl label ARMATA Records, whose releases are produced on site or in cooperation with the resident team. Beyond ARMATA, Kosovan cinema has experienced remarkable development and growth in the years since the Kosovo war, reflecting the social and cultural changes in the small, vibrant Balkan country. The themes of Kosovan cinema often revolve around the aftermath of war, identity and social issues, and offer a glimpse into the country’s history and its current challenges.
Kosovan films have received international acclaim – despite financial constraints and limited resources, cinema there continues to flourish thanks to the determination and creativity of its filmmakers. Festivals such as DokuFest in Prizren and Prishtina International Film Festival (PriFest) have become important international platforms.
Schaubühne Lindenfels Kino
Short film reel
PA VEND / DISPLACED
XK 2021, D: Samir Karahoda, 15’, OV with english subtitles, digital
I HAVE NEVER BEEN ON AN AIRPLANE
XK 2020, D: Redon Kika, 9’, OV with english subtitles, digital
JEHONË / ECHO
XK 2022, D: Ana Morina, 8’, OV with english subtitles, digital
SHPIJA / HOME
XK 2022, D: Flaka Kokolli, 7’, without dialog, digital
GARDHI / FENCE
XK/HR/FR 2018, D: Lendita Zeqiraj, 15’, OV with english subtitles, digital
KANGË E DEFA: FEMALE RHAPSODY IN KOSOVA
DE/XK 2014, D: Vincent Moon, Fatime Kosumi, 29’, Doc, OV with english subtitles, digital
KAH KQYRSHA PËRPJETË, E SHIHSHA VETEN PËRFUNI / AS I WAS LOOKING ABOVE, I COULD SEE MYSELF UNDERNEATH
CH/XK 2022, D: Ilir Hasanaj, Doc, 62’, OV with english subtitles, DCP