We are happy to announce that on the 15th of September, EEFB will launch a new section with a guest contribution from Miško Šuvaković (University of Arts, Belgrade). The Essay section will feature ten yearly guest contributions from acclaimed film scholars and journalists researching on or originating from Eastern Europe. The project aims to bring academic discussions to a platform in which audiences within and from beyond the academic sphere can benefit from it. Therewith, we hope to broaden the horizon of both our journal, and the field.
In the debut essay, Šuvaković situates his native Serbia within an emergent sphere of artistic production vis-à-vis the world of high art. The institutions of sovereign aesthetic art, he argues, have made way for a decidedly instrumental, socio-political art – one serving as a vehicle of cultural politics for transitional, “marginal” cultures hitherto unrepresented by the Western cannon. Šuvaković discusses Serbian art as an idiom of a region heard for the first time, a gesture that is further complicated by the historical denial of the opportunity to show its face globally even prior to post-modernist discourses that have destabilized concepts of identity and cultural borders. The result is an artifact bearing the “erased traces of culture,” symptoms of a world as of yet unassimilated within prevailing narratives of European identity. The essay will be available online on the 15th of September.
Meanwhile, our habitual routine continues. This issue features our recent conversation with Romanian screenwriter Razvan Radulescu (The Death of Mr. Lazarescu), to whom Ana Ribeiro spoke about his involvement in recent cinematic trends. Alina Popescu saw Somewhere in Palilula, a 2012 debut feature from Romanian theater figure Silviu Purcarete which gets entangled in sensationalism. Moritz Pfeifer analyses the birch tree as a metaphor in recent Russian films pursuing Tarkovskyan mysticism, while Konstanty Kuzma saw Maradona by Kusturica, a dangerously uncritical documentary about Maradona by Serbian director Emir Kusturica.
Finally, Colette de Castro wraps up her coverage of the recent Les états généraux du film documentaire festival in Lassus (August 19-25).
Moritz Pfeifer & Konstanty Kuzma