Sensory Ethnography Lab #2 | Foreign Parts / Single Stream / Focus on China

We’ll continue our homage to the Sensory Ethnography Lab
Today at Luru Kino. Thanks to all y’all who came around yesterday and thanks to UT Connewitz and Prof. Dr. Ursula Rao. Today we’ll have Simon Rothöhler of Germany’s unbeatenly best film magazine Cargo as a guest to give a lecture on the SEL and introduce the first two films showing today: FOREIGN PARTS and SINGLE STREAM. Rothöhler also contributed a text to our special SEL booklet which you can find here:  GEGENkino 2018 SEL booklet—or tonight at Luru Kino. Here’s the schedule and further information:

Sat 07 April 2018
Luru Kino
HOMMAGE: Sensory Ethnography Lab
8 PMForeign Parts + Single Stream
D: Véréna Paravel & J.P. Sniadecki 80’
D: Pawel Wojtasik, Toby Kim Lee & Ernst Karel 23’
10 PMJ.P. Sniadecki | FOCUS ON CHINA
SONGHUA (USA/CHN 2007, DOK, R: J.P. Sniadecki, 28’, DCP, OmeU)
YUMEN (USA/CHN 2013, DOK, R: Xu Ruotao, J.P. Sniadecki, Huang Xiang, 65’, DCP, OmeU
THE YELLOW BANK (USA/CHN 2010, DOK, R: J.P. Sniadecki, 27’, DCP, OmeU, OV w/ English subtitles

Lecture by Jun.-Prof. Dr. Simon Rothöhler



USA/F 2010 DOK, R: Vèrèna Paravel & J.P. Sniadecki, 80’, DCP, OmeU

A junkyard and spares trade point in Queens, NYC: a vivid microcosm of a predominantly migrant and precarious metropolitan culture. Snatches of dialogue, personal as well as busi-ness, barbecues, Puerto Rican singing, social hardship, alcoholism and interpersonal solidarity. Vèrèna Paravel and J.P. Sniadecki who were about to shoot experimental masterpieces in the framework of SEL respectively, LEVIATHAN (2012) and YUMEN (2013), go along the old ways of cinéma vérité in FOREIGN PARTS. The camera is hardly after aesthetic composition but direct-ly follows the protagonists that are loosely por-trayed: when begging, getting spares or dancing at the garage now and then. The industrial zone “Willets Point” is under threat of demolition, and with it the existence of about 250 shops and more than 2000 jobs. Residential units, a convention center and the like are to supplant it according to ideas of the local municipality. A socio-politically charged fi lm that never forces a certain stance: it only illustrates.


USA 2014 DOK, Paweł Wojtasik, Toby Kim Lee & Ernst Karel, 23’, DCP, OmeU

SINGLE STREAM hovers stronger between the depiction of a specifi c everyday work life and a formally abstract aesthetic study: a waste separa-tion and recycling plant gives rise to an aesthetic confi guration of the ugly phenomena. Colours, forms and material surfaces ghostly cross cin-emascope shots, the sound effects are equally haunting and appalling.

J.P. Sniadecki | FOCUS ON CHINA


USA/CHN 2007 DOK, D: J.P. Sniadecki, 28’, DCP, OmeU


USA/CHN 2013 DOK D: Xu Ruotao, J.P. Sniadecki, Huang Xiang, 65’, DCP, OmeU


USA/CHN 2010 DOK, D: J.P. Sniadecki, 27’, DCP, OmeU

With its focus on the interrelationship of man and nature, concretely the meaning of the river Son-ghua for the approximately four million inhab-itants of Harbin, SONGHUA most likely stands in the tradition of ethnographical documentary. Loosely and ephemerally, tourism, leisure activ-ities, rendezvous and trivial daily tasks, but also the severe water contamination, are registered.  A river is also the central focus of THE YELLOW BANK. The static camera is stationed on a ferry and registers the impressive skyline of Shanghai while slowly shipping along on a rainy morning. Subject and its formal composition are conceiva-bly straightforward. But then, something extraor-dinary happens: gradually, a natural phenom-enon shades the metropolitan scenario until it reaches complete darkness.While nature was controlling the proceedings for a short amount of time in THE YELLOW BANK, in YUMEN however, it is about nature’s exploitation. Yumen, a once vivid industrial city, is located in the Northwest of China. In the past, it used to be an important oil production spot, nowadays it is an abandoned and ruinous ghost town. The narrowly framed 16mm images which exhibit their fragile materiality and impermanence themselves, equal-ly capture the shabby interior of previous factories and representative buildings as well as individual people moving ghostly through these.