~ Newlyn Film Festival ~

News Round-Up: Pandemic Edition

“Why Poetry?” Video Podcast Special on Poetry Film with Lucy English


This is such an excellent look at the role of collaboration in poetry film-making. A very well-edited and satisfying program, focusing on Lucy English’s Book of Hours project, it ought to work well as an introduction to the genre for poets and filmmakers alike.

Ó Bhéal Poetry-Film Competition Open for Submissions

Guidelines here.

Weimar Poetry Film Award: Festival Postponed, Deadline Extended

Guidelines here.

FVPS Deadline Extended and The Symposium Postponed until Fall 2020

“The Film and Video Poetry Society will postpone our 3rd annual symposium; we are hopeful, and are committed to rescheduling for fall 2020. Submissions remain open and our deadline extended to August 3, 2020.” More here.

Newlyn PZ Poetry Film Competition Winners Announced

The 2020 Newlyn PZ Film Festival was cancelled, but we still know the winners of the poetry film competition thanks to a post at the increasingly indispensable Liberated Words website.

Cadence Video Poetry Festival, Other Film Festivals Move Online

Rather than cancel entirely, the Cadence Video Poetry Festival made the choice of screening films online in five screenings on 15-19 April. A number of other film festivals are opting to screen films online for a few days as well. It’s a shame that so many film festivals bar submissions of films that are freely available online. Otherwise it might be possible for Cadence and others to post all competition films to the web on a permanent basis, and people with dodgier internet connections (including myself) would have an easier time watching them. If the pandemic makes meat-space festivals impossible for the next couple of years, as seems possible, some festivals might end up doing a 180 and requiring all submissions to be available on the web. That would certainly shake things up!

Visible Poetry Project Films All Online

The Visible Poetry Project is one web-first, festival-like thing that wasn’t hurt by the pandemic. A film went up each day in April, and you can watch them all on their website.

New Book on Videopoetry by Valerie LeBlanc and Daniel H. Dugas

Books on or about videopoetry are a rarity, and this one is available for free as a PDF, with a print version due out later this year. Here’s Sarah Tremlett’s mini review. It’s cool to be able to read about the making of a film and then click a live link to watch it. I’ll be interested to see whether the print edition includes QR codes allowing readers with mobile phones to watch the films as they read.

Online “Festival of Hope” Features Videopoetry

This is a cool festival. And it looks as if the films may remain live for a while.

Corona! Shut Down? Open Call and Ongoing Release of Videos

New Media 2020 Corona Festival banner

It’s not just for poetry videos, but this is well worth checking out — and submitting to. As they say, “Corona isn’t the plague, and not all infected people are gonna be dying. Probably, the crisis is a wake-up call – to rethink and change!?”

Poetry film festival news round-up

Poetry film festival season is now in full swing. Major festivals are just ’round the corner in Vienna, Berlin, Mexico City, and Athens.

poster featuring Motionpoems

First up is the biannual Art Visuals & Poetry Film Festival scheduled for 29 November to 1 December in Vienna. Though mainly a German-language event, this year it includes a special focus on the US-based production company Motionpoems.

Then it’s time for the ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival in Berlin, whose full programme is now online. They sent along a press release, worth reproducing nearly in full due the central importance of this festival to the poetry film genre.

Once again, Berlin becomes the centre for the poetry film. From 5 to 8 December, the ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival will for the 10th time be presenting the poetry film in all its facets in the Kino in der KulturBrauerei cinema. For the first time the current poetry film from Germany is the centre piece of the festival. Poetry film creation in the United Kingdom will be given a special spot in the limelight. The programme is now online. And Tickets go on advance sale in mid-November.

THU 5 Dec | 20.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei

Guest of honour will be Jochen Kuhn, artist and film maker. A voice of contemporary German poetry, Özlem Özgül Dündar, is reading her latest poems. The music of the British and Berlin based multi-instrumentalist Rowan Coupland is often referring to poetry.

Part 1: Yearned-For Places FRI 6 Dec | 19.30 (Repetition SAT 7 Dec | 14.30)
Part 2: Common Values SAT 7 Dec | 19.30. (Repetition SUN 8 Dec | 14.30)
all in Kino in der KulturBrauerei

From more than 500 submissions from all over Germany the Programme Commission has chosen the best poetry films for the Competition. The international Jury of three will be awarding the prizes to the winning films at the awards ceremony on 8 December.

SUN 8 Dec | 20.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei

The international Jury, comprising Jana Cernik (AG Kurzfilm), Charlotte Warsen (poet) and Tim Webb (filmmaker), will be awarding four prizes: the ZEBRA Prize for the Best Poetry Film, donated by the Haus für Poesie, the Goethe Film Prize, donated by the Goethe Institute, the Prize for the Best Film for Tolerance, donated by the German Foreign Ministry and the Ritter Sport Film Prize, donated by Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co. KG. Musical accompaniment for the evening will be provided by F.S. Blumm.

We Are Poets FRI. 6.12. | 5 pm
Very British FRI. 6.12. | 10 pm
State of the Art SAT. 7.12. | 5 pm
Stiff Upper Verse SAT. 7.12. | 10 pm
all in Kino in der KulturBrauerei

The country focus this year is on the United Kingdom. The programme ‘State of the Art’ shows the latest British productions, curated by the poets and film makers Chaucer Cameron, Helen Dewbery, Lucy English and Sarah Tremlett. The ‘Very British’ programme is a Best Of from the past few decades of the British poetry film. The documentary ‘We Are Poets’ by Daniel Lucchesi and Alex Ramseyer-Bache celebrates its German première at the festival. In ‘Stiff Upper Verse’ the British poets Simon Barraclough, Lucy English and Roseanne Watt will be reading in English, Welsh and the dialect of the Shetland Isles.

Journey in the Mind FRI 6 Dec | 19.30
Transit SAT 7 Dec | 17.00
Parlour Games SAT 7 Dec | 19.30
Interrelations SAT 7 Dec | 22.00 | all in Kino in der KulturBrauerei

The Programme Commission has selected 35 films for Prism; three programmes present the broad spectrum of the German poetry film including animations, experimental films and features. The programme ‘Transit’ shows documentary portraits of poets.

design akademie berlin & Hochschule Anhalt, Dessau FRI 6 Dec | 17.00
UdK Berlin & KHM Köln FRI 6 Dec | 22.00
HFBK Hamburg & Hochschule Düsseldorf SAT 7 Dec | 14.30
HFK Bremen & Hochschule Mainz SAT 7 Dec | 22.00
Bauhaus-Uni Weimar & HBK Braunschweig SUN 8 Dec | 16.00
all in Kino in der KulturBrauerei

Colloquium: The Eye of the Poem SUN 8 Dec | 11.00 | Haus für Poesie
Master Class: Between Film and Poetry FRI 6 Dec | 14.00 | Haus für Poesie

The poetry film is a popular genre at universities and film academies. Students at ten German higher education institutions will be showing poetry films made in the course of a collaboration over a year. In the Colloquium Anna Anders (UdK Berlin), Sophie Maintigneux (KHM Cologne), Ulrike Almut Sandig (poet), Tim Webb (Royal College of Art) and Sarah Tremlett (Liberated Words CIC) will be discussing the position of the poetry film in German and British higher education institutions. And the director Jochen Kuhn will be giving a poetry film master class.

FESTIVAL POEM: [native vegetation a natural resource]
SUN 8 Dec | 17.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei

In response to ZEBRA’s call for entries, film makers have submitted their film versions of this year’s festival poem, [dieses regionale getreide] ([native vegetation a natural resource]) by Daniel Falb. Film makers Zihrong Lu, Gruppe Leuchtstoff, Holger Mohaupt and Gabriele Nugara will present their film versions and be talking to the poet about poetry and film. You can read the poem on lyrikline.org.

FRI 6 Dec | 22.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei

Poems by Özlem Özgül Dündar, Adrian Kasnitz, Ulrike Almut Sandig, Kathrin Schmidt and Raed Wahesh are the basis of this year’s films in the Competition and Prism. In the ZEBRA Night of Readings the poets will be reading their texts and talking to Alexander Gumz about making films based on poems.

Media Workshop: The Spirits We Conjured up
WED 4 Dec | 9.00 | Haus für Poesie
Sorcerer’s Apprentices in the Moor of Horror: Programme of Ballads
THU 5 Dec | 9.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei
Holes in the Head: Programme in Focus Language English
THU 5 Dec | 9.30 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei
I Made It Myself: Films by Children for Children
FRI 6 Dec | 9.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei
ZEBRINO Competition FRI 6 Dec | 9.00 | Kino in der KulturBrauerei
Poetry Workshop Writing Netflix! FRI 6 Dec | 9.00 | Haus für Poesie
Workshop Slam: Rucksack and a Journey FRI 6 Dec | 9.00 | Herder-Gymnasium

The Best Poetry Film for Children and Young People will be chosen by the young audience themselves in the ZEBRINO Competition. There will also be a colourful programme of workshops and films for Berlin schoolchildren with, among others, the Spoken Word artists Bas Böttcher and Nicole May.

Festival Fotogenia poster

As great as it is to see ZEBRA continuing to flourish, now to the point of becoming an annual festival, I’m equally excited to see a new poetry film festival springing up — in Mexico City. Check out FESTIVAL FOTOGENIA, I missed the call-out (sorry) but thanks to social media posts by filmmaker Helmie Stil, this didn’t escape my radar altogether. The description on their website suggests an avant-garde perspective on the genre:

FOTOGENIA, FIRST INTERNATIONAL FILM POETRY & DIVERGENT NARRATIVES FESTIVAL promotes a space with alternative conception of films, a celebration of experimentation and avant-garde framework, the love of curiosity and research of the seventh Art. Everyone is invited, taking into consideration the disruptive nature of the selected works.

We welcome you to watch films in another way!

If you are an audiovisual maker interested in provoking the cinematographic image through the exploration of the frontiers and limits of film narrative, genre, format and the nature of film itself, in order to converse with the viewers in innovative and critical ways to ignite a confrontation between reality and cinematic phenomenon, this is your place to exhibit your passion.

The +Institute [for Experimental Arts] and Void Network present the 8th International Video Poetry Festival 2019

Meanwhile in Athens, the International Video Poetry Festival will be held on the weekend of the 14th and 15th. (But submissions remain open until November 20!) Special events this year will include a screening of videopoems by my co-editor Marie Cravens as well as the touring program of videopoems from around the world that she’s pulled together, Poetry + Video, plus the Margaret Tait 100 program celebrating the first Scottish woman to make feature films, who was also a pioneer of poetry in film. And there will be a videopoetry seminar panel including film-makers, writers, performers, and musicians.

Finally, I’d be remiss if I didn’t include a reminder that submissions are still open for REELpoetry/Houston TX 2020 (Deadline: December 9) and the 2020 Newlyn PZ International Film Festival (Deadline: February 24) .
Newlyn PZ International Film Festival poster

Call for poetry films: 2020 Newlyn PZ Festival

Submissions are open for the third Newlyn PZ International Film Festival, to be held April 24-26, 2020, with a Poetry Film category judged once again by Lucy English and Sarah Tremlett. There’s a submissions page on the website with the rules and guidelines.


Newlyn Film Festival deadline extended to February 28

The deadline for submission of poetry films and other shorts to the 2019 Newlyn Film Festival, originally set for December 30, 2018, has been extended to February 28. Visit FilmFreeway for all the details.

I should also mention that there’s an excellent interview on the Liberated Words website with last year’s winner, Dave Richardson, conducted by Sarah Tremlett: “Unchartered Terrain: The Personal Within.” I was especially interested to learn that Richardson’s first poetry video gig was making Flash animations for the late, great online magazine Born. It’s an influence that persists in his videopoetry to this day:

DR: My journalism training in college told me to cut and cut to what matters. When I started to do that with the more poetic stuff, it felt more authentic, like my real voice. I try to keep it simple so that I am not trying to over-write. Many times I stop with the second draft of the text, just to not over-think.

ST: In relation to that, often you have different text on screen to the voice-over – is this something deliberate and is there a point behind this? It is difficult to get this right and quite an art.

DR: I did some experiments with Flash years ago, where I was randomly coding phrases to interact with randomly loaded images, and I was enthralled with the endless results and connections that were unexpected. That randomness, just a quality of unexpected relationships between image and text — I try to recreate that in my work for fun, for the pleasure of seeing what might surprise me. It makes new meaning for me. And then I edit.

Read the whole thing. A genuinely illuminating conversation.

Call for work: 2nd Newlyn International Film Festival

Submissions are open for the second annual Newlyn Film Festival, to be held at the southwestern tip of Cornwall in April 2019. Once again, poetry films under six minutes long are solicited, with poetry film scholar-practitioners Lucy English and Sarah Tremlett acting as judges. During the festival, I’m told, they’ll also be giving a talk about the genre. Which is great, because this is one of the few general film festivals to include a poetry film category. We get to break out of the poetry-film ghetto and mingle with other fimmakers! Maybe even make a few converts.

Please visit FilmFreeway for the complete details on how to submit. Note that all films must be in English or have English subtitles; there is a submission fee: £15 or $20; the deadline is January 31; and “Newlyn Film Festival does not require any premiere status, but notes that this may come into consideration during the selection process”. And as a fairly, um, basic filmmaker myself (who—full disclosure—had a poetry film chosen for last year’s screening), this is my favorite bit:

A film’s success is dependent not on its budget or length, but on its core vision and the creativity/efficiency with which it communicates that vision. Programs consist of these diverse visions assembled in an order and rhythm so that even in contrast each is mutually complimentary.

Read the rest.

Film festival news note: Newlyn extends deadline to 21 February

The deadline for submissions to the Newlyn Film Festival has been extended to February 21st. (It had been January 31.) This is the festival slated for April 6-8th on the southwestern tip of England with a special category for poetry films, to be judged by Lucy English and Sarah Tremlett. The director tells me they’ve had a good response from poetry filmmakers so far, so I guess we’re not the main reason the deadline has been extended, but don’t miss your chance to be a part of this brand-new festival. Here are the guidelines.

Call for poetry films: Newlyn Film Festival

A new international film festival slated for April 6-8th, 2018 at the The Centre, Newlyn, Cornwall, UK will include a poetry film section, selected by judges Lucy English and Sarah Tremlett, who should be well known to readers of Moving Poems. The deadline is January 31 February 21, 2018. Here are the guidelines. To see the categories and submission fees for each, click through to Film Freeway and look on the right-hand sidebar. Poetry films can be up to six minutes long, and are “limited to one per applicant.”

The other categories are Fiction Film, Student Film, and Documentary. General advice on eligibility notes that “The Festival is open to short films of all production techniques, including animation, documentary, drama, experimental or artist film and hybrid work from low to high budgets.”

Updated 2 October to correct information about the maximum duration of poetry films.