DOKU.ARTS was initiated by director Andreas Lewin and established by the Academy of Arts Berlin. From 2008 to 2010, DOKU.ARTS was a guest at the Netherlands Filmmuseum Amsterdam. Invited by the Instituto Moreira Salles, a special selection of DOKU.ARTS-films was presented between May 4th and 10th, 2012 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. DOKU.ARTS returns to Berlin after seven years with a new edition presented at Zeughauskino from Sept. 19th to October 14th, 2012. DOKU.ARTS at Zeughauskino is enabled by the generous support of Capital Culture Fonds.
The history of documentaries on art is almost as long as that of cinema itself. Early on, filmmakers were fascinated by the opportunity to document the process of art coming to life. Artists’ portraits are an essential part of the careers of some of our finest filmmakers such as Agnès Varda, Johan van der Keuken, Albert Maysles, D. A. Pennebaker, Chris Marker, Martin Scorsese, Manoel de Oliveira, Claire Denis and Wim Wenders. Young filmmakers often make their first feature-length documentary about an artist. Sometimes these films are especially long in the making, resulting in profound studies of the life and work of an artist.
In times of extensive technological acceleration and revolutionary transformations in media platforms, forms of memorization concerning the arts are increasingly important. In the continuously shifting media landscape of today, the arts are most often covered by brief reports and cursory, journalistic formats. A more substantial “second look” by filmmakers becomes more and more difficult, although this situation is in contrast with the actual popularity of artist portraits.
Documentaries on art are increasingly valuable, not only because they deliver insights into the process of artistic production and supply a need for authentic narration. In fact, films about artist’s lives are fascinating in the way that they reveal the social processes of change. They also provide crucial reflections on art itself and therefore become essential for creative inspiration – not just for artists.
DOKU.ARTS presents the intensity, diversity, fantasy and the joy of experimentation in the documentary genre. From extended observations to essayistic films, from compilation films to homages, DOKU.ARTS presents creative documentaries from filmmakers and cineastic documents with an artistic approach. By focusing on the advancement of this valuable genre, the DOKU.ARTS festival is unique in Europe.