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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition

Concept

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Created under the patronage of the National University of Theatre and Film "I.L. Caragiale" and the National University of Arts Bucharest, with the support of the Administration of the National Cultural Fund and the Romanian National Film Center, BUCHAREST INTERNATIONAL EXPERIMENTAL FILM FESTIVAL BIEFF has as its main focus the courage to experiment in cinematic language.
 
BIEFF is the first showcase of avant-garde cinema and visual art in Romania, a non-commercial event with educational purpose, aimed at bringing to the audience highly innovative films and filmmakers with strong personal views on contemporary reality, which also daringly explore the boundaries of cinematic language. A cinema of total creative freedom and lack of compromise.
  
We believe BIEFF is a highly necessary event, particularly for Romania, whose cinema has proved its impressive power in recent years, through the outstanding voices of Cristi Puiu, Corneliu Porumboiu, Cristian Mungiu, Radu Jude and others, yet mainly in the area of realistic narrative fiction. On this flourishing creative background, BIEFF comes as a natural complementary reaction, its main goal being to broaden perception, to open a whole new artistic territory, both for the general and the specialized audience, particularly for film and visual art students and professionals.
  
Therefore we present films which are lessons in cinema, emblematic pieces, eye-openers with regard to the unlimited possibilities offered by the cinematic medium, the ways to transcend any possible borders between fiction, documentary and visual art, the transgression of boundaries on every level ranging from concept, structure, rhythm, to the construction of the shot.
 
BIEFF is also the first event in Romania dedicated to promoting artistic productions at the border area between cinema and visual art, offering increased visibility to cutting edge visual artists, whose work is mainly accessible in museums and in the art gallery circuit and rarely on cinema screen. We do this because we believe this border area is an extremely rich, creatively nourishing territory, from where unique artistic voices have constantly emerged over the years, such as Peter Greenaway, David Lynch, Derek Jarman, Andy Warhol, Stan Brakhage and others.
 
BIEFF presents on one side an INTERNATIONAL EXPERIMENTAL SHORT FILM COMPETITION, consisting of some of the most intriguing and innovative visual experiments from the last few years, titles awarded and screened in prestigious festivals, museums and galleries all over the world, such as Cannes, Berlin, Venice, Rotterdam, Oberhausen, Toronto, Centre Pompidou etc.
 
BIEFF is also honored to collaborate with some of the major international film festivals and institutions in the area of avant-garde cinema and visual art, recognized worldwide for their consistent creative support of innovative, radical filmmaking and visual art: QUINZAINE DES RÉALISATEURS – Cannes Film Festival, BERLINALE Forum Expanded  Berlin International Film Festival, ARSENAL Institute for Film and Video Art, International Film Festival ROTTERDAM, Le FRESNOY – Studio National des Arts Contemporains, CINEDANS  Dance on Screen Festival Amsterdam, SIXPACKFILM Austria and EYE Film Institute Netherlands,  who bring to Bucharest a selection of highly innovative multi-awarded films from their last year’s selections.
 
As for each of our editions, we are honored to welcome in our International Competition Jury prestigious films professionals such as: ANGELIKA RAMLOW  Representative of BERLINALE Forum Expanded and ARSENAL Institute For Film and Video Art; PAOLO MORETTI  Member of the Selection Committee, Festival of Documentary Film FIDMarseille; CĂLIN DAN  Visual artist and Director of National Museum of Contemporary Art – MNAC Bucharest.

Moreover, BIEFF has started in 2010 a wonderful collaboration with one of the leading experimental filmmakers of our time, PETER GREENAWAY. He made an unforgetable official opening at our festival in 2010 with an impressive Masterclass, addressed especially to our core audience, Romanian film and visual art students and professionals; and in 2011 he brought his groundbreaking LIVE CINEMA VJ PERFORMANCE LUPERCYCLOPEDIA, a highly innovative audio-visual experiment, intended to challenge the borders of filmic language and offer the audience a totally new cinematic experience, performance which was immensely successful all over the world.
 
Starting with 2012, PETER GREENAWAY has become the HONORARY PRESIDENT of the Bucharest International Experimental Film Festival BIEFF, generously joining us in our educational initiative. PETER GREENAWAY is one of the key voices of contemporary avant-garde cinema, one of the most ambitious and controversial experimental filmmakers of our time. Trained as a painter and heavily influenced by theories of structural linguistics, ethnography, and philosophy, PETER GREENAWAY's films often traverse unexplored territories, rejecting conventional narrative structures in favor of awe-striking imagery, constantly testing the limits of the cinematic medium. Regularly nominated in prestigious film festivals such as Cannes, Venice and Berlin, he has an impressive body of work, consisting of 13 feature films and 50 short films and documentaries, plus exhibitions, visual installations, VJ performances, paintings, books, opera librettos.
 
Furthermore, following its previous years' success, BIEFF will dedicate again its 2017 Opening and Closing Ceremonies to the most recent works of some major names of the contemporary cinema. In 2010, BIEFF presented, for the first time in Romania, the latest film of the master of experimental cinema Jan Švankmajer, right after its premiere in Venice. In 2011, BIEFF screened the Romanian premiere of the most recent work of Alexander Sokurov, his impressive FAUST, winner of the Golden Lion in Venice 2011. In 2012, BIEFF presented the Romanian premiere of Peter Greenaway's impressive latest feature, GOLTZIUS AND THE PELICAN COMPANY, while in 2013 the film to open the festival was Terry Gilliam's most recent feature, THE ZERO THEOREM. In 2014, BIEFF opened with the Golden Lion winner from that year, Roy Andersson’s A PIGEON SAT ON A BRANCH REFLECTING ON EXISTENCE and closed with Ulrich Seidl’s fascinating hybrid documentary, IN THE BASEMENT. The 2016 festival opened with Aleksandr Sokurov's sophisticated and absorbing FRANCOFONIA, and it closed with Peter Greenaway again, who brought to Bucharest his amazing and provocative EISENSTEIN IN GUANAJUATO.
 
Copel Moscu, Festival Director
Adina Pintilie, Artistic Director