Selected Shorts: The GDR’S 1980s Alternative Art Scene

Event Details

July 9, 2018
2:00 pm-4:30 pm

Integrative Learning Center

Room: S240

UMass Amherst Campus

Handicap access available
Free admission

Three Artists’ Super-8 Films (from the collection of the ex.oriente.lux archive, Berlin):


Action Situation (GDR, 1983, dir. Helge Leiberg, 9 min., color & b/w)

Draped in White (GDR, 1987, dir. Cornelia Schleime, 9 min., color)

Report–A Comment on a Comment (GDR, 1987, dir. Via Lewandowsky, 7 min., color)                                   

Two Shorts by Lutz Dammbeck: 

Metamorphoses I (GDR, 1979, 7 min., color, non-camera-anim.)
A collage based on the idea for a banned Tangente multi-media exhibition.
Hommage à la Sarraz (Germany, 1981, 12 min., b&w, non-camera anim.)

The director relocates the Leipzig-based artists’ circle known as Herbstsalon to La Sarraz, the legendary site of the European avant-garde filmmakers’ congress in 1929. 


The First Leipzig Herbstsalon
(Germany, 1984-2017, dir. Lutz Dammbeck, 22 min., b/w, doc., EN Intertitles)
In 1984 six GDR artists, including Dammbeck, secretly organized the sensational First Leipzig Herbstsalon, in protest of the failed reform of the East German art market.

The Subversive Camera
Die subversive Kamera
(Germany, 1997, dir. Cornelia Klauß, 42 min., color, doc., EN ST)
The history of the GDR Super-8 scene—an underground art movement that was closely monitored by the Stasi. Artists Ramona Köppel-Welsch, Cornelia Schleime and Christine Schlegel, among others, talk about their experiences as artists in the GDR and how their work changed after the Wall came down.

Introduction by April Eisman, Iowa State University


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