Collective (lat. collectivum) is a collective noun that in the singular form denotes a multitude of individuality, that is, a set of people associated with common work and interests. Collective efforts in the era of modernism in the form of collectivisation of artistic roles, functions and personalities were the first real attempt to develop a viable alternative to consumer social life. These collective voices and speech in the name of a nation, class or mankind had one goal – to shape a kind of group existence and to erase boundaries between subject and subjectivity, to diminish the role of an individual author and to emphasise the synergy of the totality of all the constituent parts. From artistic groups through cinema clubs to neo-avantgarde movements, collectivism after the Second World War marks a shift in the practice of artists with a focus on art as institution towards an active involvement in the field of mass culture. The ideal of collectivism was no longer to be realized in the social plan, but within the framework of cultural exchange. The pursuit of collectivism no longer rested on finding the unique avant-garde representative of social effort but formed into displaced and changeable identities. The most important feature of the collective phenomenon is that it always raises issues of wider social and economic conditions of production that are always collective regardless of the external phenomenon, thereby collectivism shows the ability to connect the past and the present.
What do we understand under the collective today, in the dawn of a new historical era, whose signifiers are technological and informational imperative, global networking and facilitated communication, ecological disaster, mass migrations, “invisible” war areas, rising class and racial stratification? Does today’s collectivism represent only a nostalgic collective memory of a collective event like that of ’68 or decentralised collective action that is spread by all means: stories, rumours, provisional and occasional social movements, mass media, the Internet? Are the forms of today’s collectivism – from the informally networked community of technologically educated artists and political activists, collectivism of public opinion, collectivism of mass consumerism, entrepreneurial collectivism of multinational corporations to the multitude such as the creative workers, local activists and environmentalists, urban gardeners or those dealing with home affairs, mothers – expressions and consequences of collective endeavour or just the need for a kind of collective identity and the experience of the collective body? At the end, what would be the idea of a collective in a contemporary context – an imaginative vision of a future social ideal through the language of dystopia / utopia or dealing with social life as a production and means of expression?
We are looking for works that deal with the phenomenon of the collective and its manifestations critically and in a reflexive manner, productively and deconstructively, works that represent a collectively produced image* and / or that intervene in the image of the collective, while re-examining social, cultural and political narratives in which the phenomenon of the collective participates and representing a different insight into the current audiovisual and production codes of collectivism.
Innovative experimental, exploratory, avant-garde, personal and political works can be submitted to the competition. Single-channel videos and films up to 20 minutes are welcomed. All works in a language other than English should have English subtitles.
SCREENING FORMAT: 16mm, 35mm, digital file, blu-ray, DVD
ALTERNATIVE FILM/VIDEO EXTENDED
By participating in the Festival works become part of ALTERNATIVE FILM ARCHIVE and are accessible for research work in the Archive and for presentation of the Festival in different venues both in Serbia and internationally (with artist consent). Films and videos which are selected for the List of Significant Achievements will be screened at non-commercial screenings in Serbia and abroad as festival promotion.
ALTERNATIVE FILM/VIDEO is an international Festival established in 1982. As a meeting place for artists, theorists, critics and the audience, the Festival’s goal is to record and theoretically define movements, promote constructive values and support new creative possibilities in visual media. The idea of “Alternative” is about work that does not fall into easy categorizations, and that operates counter to dominant commercial and aesthetic trends. The Festival provides a glimpse of the current state of new film and video tendencies in the region and the world. The founder and the organizer of the festival is Academic Film Center of Students’ City Cultural Center.
* Serge Daney distinguished a true, complex art of the image (painting, cinema) from the indifference of the audiovisual (TV, advertising in all forms, digital media).