In the context of MoMA’s “Carte Blanche: Mariette Rissenbeek on German Women Cinematographers” film series (March 1–12) and in cooperation with German Films Service and Marketing GmbH, Deutsches Haus at NYU presents a conversation about "The Vision She Sees: A Conversation among Female Film Professionals" among Mariette Rissenbeek and cinematographers Daniela Knapp, Sophie Maintigneux, Jakobine Motz, Ulrike Ottinger, and Leah Striker, which will be moderated by Professor Fatima Naqvi.
About the film series at MoMA:
In 2020, Mariette Rissenbeek will become the first woman to lead the Berlin Film Festival (as executive director, with newly appointed artistic director Carlo Chatrian)—and, by extension, any of the “big three” European festivals (including Cannes and Venice). This milestone, which took 69 years to achieve, is cause for long-overdue celebration. Rissenbeek began her career in production, before becoming familiar to lovers of German cinema through her work as head of the film-promotion agency German Films. In celebration of her staunch support for women throughout the industry, MoMA has invited her to select 11 must-see films shot by German women cinematographers. “It was very exciting but at the same time quite challenging when MoMA offered me a Carte Blanche to present a number of recent German films,” Rissenbeek says. “For me personally, the female view on society and its topics has always played a crucial role. From its very beginnings, cinema tells its stories in pictures, and they are right at the center of cinematographic art. So it seemed not only natural but, rather, mandatory to work with exactly that point of view: pictures made by women, women behind the camera.”
About the speakers:
Daniela Knapp was born in Austria and is currently based in Berlin. Since graduating from the Film Academy Baden Württemberg, she has been working consistently with (her partner in crime) director Sven Taddicken (Emmas Glück and Gleissendes Glück, among other films). Her loyalty also has resulted in an ongoing creative partnerships with Julia von Heinz (Hannas Reise and Katharina Luther, among other films). For Katharina Luther Daniela Knapp received the „Bavarian Fernsehpreis for Best Cinematography“and for her work on Poll, directed by Chris Kraus, the prestigious „Deutscher Filmpreis for Best Cinematography.”
Sophie Maintigneux was born in Antony (France). After training as an assistant camera operator, she began working as a cinematographer in 1984. She participated as director of photography in over 70 fiction feature films and documentaries to date, having worked with Eric Rohmer, Jean-Luc Godard, Michael Klier, Jan Schütte, Rudolph Thome, Helga Reidemeister, Philipp Gröning, Marcel Gisler, Judith Kennel, Lilo Mangelsdorff, Erica von Moeller, Maria Teresa Camoglio, Michael Radford, Mareike Wegener, Ingo Haeb, Doris Metz, and Immogen Kimmel. In 1990, Sophie Maintigneux was presented with the German Film Critics' Association Award for Best Photography. Other awards and nominations include: Best Photography Award at the Dignes Film Festival (1989); Best Photography from Hessen Federal State (1990); the Max Ophüls Festival: Femina Award (2001); a Camerimage Golden Frog nomination (2001); Silver Award at the 22nd International Film Camera Festival in Vitola (2001); Best Photography at the 45th Leipzig International Documentary Film Festival (2002); the German Camera Award in the Documentary Category (2003 and 2009); plus a nomination for the same award in 2006 and another for the German Camera Award in the Feature Film category (2007). In 2017, she received the Cinematographer Award at The WIFTS Foundation International Visionary Awards. Her film credits include (among other things): Le Rayon vert (1984); Les quatre aventures de Reinette et Mirabelle (1985); King Lear (1987); Überall ist es besser, wo wir nicht sind (1988); Rupture (1988); Winkelmanns Reisen (1990); Ostkreuz (1991); Liebe auf den ersten Blick (1991); Rosa Negra (1991), Das Tripas Coração (1992), Frankie, Johnny und die anderen (1992), Küss mich (1994); F. est un salaud (1997); L' amour, l' argent, l' amour (2000); Heidi M. (2000); Gotteszell (2000); Venus Boyz (2001); NeuFundLand (2001); Liebe und Verlangen (2002); Damen und Herren ab 65 (2002); Siehst du mich? (2004); Hannah (2006); Alter und Schönheit (2008); Fräulein Stines fährt um die Welt (2008); Die dünnen Mädchen (2008); Liebe Geschichte (2009); Michel Petrucciani (2010); Mark Lombardi—Kunst und Konspiration (2011); Rosie (2012); Sternstunde meines Leben (2013); Das Zimmermädchen Lynn (2014); CinéKino (2015); Der Primus. Franz Joseph Strauß (2015); Draußen (2016); Mario (2017); Widerstandsmomente (2017); and In Transition (2018). Sophie Maintigneux is currently a professor at the Academy of Media Arts in Cologne. She has taught at several film schools, chiefly at the DFFB (German Film and Television Academy Berlin). She is currently based in Berlin and holds dual German–French nationality.
Jakobine Motz was born in 1967 and grew up in the GDR. She studied cinematography at the University of Film and Television “Konrad Wolf” in Potsdam-Babelsberg. In 1994, she went to Ghana for one year as a DAAD scholarship holder. From 1996 until 1998, she attended the Advanced Film and Television Studies for Cinematography at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles, where she graduated with a Master Degree of Fine Arts. Afterwards, she returned to Germany and worked as lecturer and assistant professor at the University of Film and Television “Konrad Wolf” in Potsdam-Babelsberg unti 2003. Since then, she has been working as director of photography as well as editor, author for documentary and fiction film, and lecturer.
Fatima Naqvi (moderator) is professor of German and Film Studies at Rutgers University, where she has taught since 2000. Professor Naqvi’s research interests include the intersection of architecture and literature; the theorization of interdisciplinarity; ecological films; Austrian authors and filmmakers of the 20th and 21st centuries; and affect studies. She has written books on the perception of victimhood in Western European culture between 1968 and the new millennium (The Literary and Cultural Rhetoric of Victimhood, Palgrave 2007); the films of Michael Haneke (Trügerische Vertrautheit, Synema 2010; The While Ribbon, Camden House, forthcoming 2019; Michael Haneke: Interviews, University Press of Mississippi, forthcoming 2019); and the intersection of architecture and educational discourse in the works of Thomas Bernhard (How We Learn Where We Live; Northwestern 2016). One current research project focuses on the topic of “fremdschämen”—the sense of shame for another—in contemporary media culture (special attention is devoted to the works of Ulrich Seidl, Erwin Wurm, and Elfriede Jelinek). A second project delves into the problem of generosity and environmental consciousness in recent documentary films. Professor Naqvi teaches courses on Vienna 1900; Robert Musil and His Age; the German novel of the post-1945 period; literature and architecture; modernism; and film (“From Haunted Screen to Hyperreality,” “Screening German Histories,” ”Our Threatened Planet: Documentary Films and Ecocriticism,” “Weimar Cinema.”)
Ulrike Ottinger has been a unique and provocative voice in German cinema since her debut in the early 1970s. Over the past 37 years, she has directed 26 films, including feature-length fiction films and experimental documentaries. She received numerous awards, including the Audience Jury Prize in Montréal, the Bundesfilmpreis, and the German Film Critics Award. Her films have been shown at multiple retrospectives, including the Cinémathèque Française in Paris and the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Ulrike Ottinger has been a photographer throughout her career presenting works at the Biennale di Venezia, the Documenta, and the Berlin Biennale, among others. She has also worked as a theatre director and ethnographer and she has published several books.
Mariette Rissenbeek studied German Language & Literature at the University of Utrecht (Netherlands) and at the Free University of Berlin. After moving to Berlin she started her career in film at the independent distribution company Tobis Filmkunst. Being in charge of acquisitions and PR coordination, she was responsible for, among others, La Reine Margot by Patrice Chereau; The Fabulous Baker Boys by Steve Kloves; Thelma and Louise by Ridley Scott; L’Amant by Jean-Jacques Annaud; La Petite Vouleuse by Claude Miller; and Belle Epoque by Fernando Trueba. Tobis Filmkunst was co-producer on Wim Wenders’ award-winning film Faraway, So Close! and Mariette Rissenbeek was in charge of the international sales of the film. In 1995, she started to work as a producer at the independent production company Regina Ziegler Filmproduktion in Berlin. She was responsible for the production of theatrical projects like The Waiting Room by Jos Stelling; Elephants Never Forget by Detlev Buck; Samolico by Mika Kaurismäki; and Solo für Klarinette by Nico Hofmann. In addition, she produced a number of films for the public broadcaster ZDF including the miniseries Sturmzeit by Bernd Böhlich and Beckmann & Markowski by Kai Wessel, as well as the romantic comedy Champagner und Kamillentee by Marijan Vajda. Mariette Rissenbeek established her own production company in 1998 in Hamburg and produced the feature film Highway Society by Mika Kaurismäki, which starred the well-known German actors Kai Wiesinger and Marie Zielke. In 2000, she moved to Munich and produced a television film Aus Liebe zu Tom by Juliane Hohl for the commercial broadcaster SAT1, working at Hofmann & Voges Entertainment, Munich. Mariette Rissenbeek was responsible for festival promotion and public relations at German Films Service + Marketing GmbH when she started working there in 2003. Since 2011, she is the Managing Director of German Films, the national institution in charge of the international promotion of German cinema.
Leah Striker had a background in mathematics, punkrock music, and photography before she pursued an MfA at the American Film Institute (AFI) conservatory in Los Angeles. Since graduating in 2005, she has shot a wide range of feature films for both cinema and television in Europe and other parts of the world. Some of her collaborations for feature films with European directors include Stiller Sommer (director: Nana Neul); Wolfskinder and Krieg (director: Rick Ostermann), both of which opened at the Venice Film festival; and South African apartheid-era Shepherds and Butchers (director: Oliver Schmitz) which premiered at the Berlinale in 2016.
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"The Vision She Sees: A Conversation among Female Film Professionals" is a DAAD-sponsored event.