ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival announces the prizewinners

22.11.2020

Because of the renewed lockdown in November, this year‘s ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival is taking place online. The Competition films, the Focus Canada/Québec, the Festival Poem and the readings went online at the weekend. The Jury – Maren Kames, Tom Konyves and Martina Nix – announced the prizewinners in a video awards ceremony on Sunday evening. And the Festival is continuing –all the Festival’s film programmes will be uploaded a few at a time over the next few weeks.

These films have won:

The ZEBRA Prize for the Best Poetry Film, donated by the Haus für Poesie, has gone to Évian (DEU 2020) by Ghayath Almadhoun, based on the poem of the same name by Ghayath Almadhoun. From the jury citation: “A story that could only be told if this image of the deep ‘stands behind’ the words of the poem. And it does that. Like a visual representation of the unconscious it is a big unknowable that flows without a break, wave after wave, thought after thought, bearing the words of the poem.”

The Goethe Film Prize, donated by the Goethe Institute has been awarded to Cos Endins / Inside the body (ITA 2019) by Eduard Escoffet and Gianluca Abbate, based on the poem of the same name by Eduard Escoffet. From the jury citation: “A perfect interplay of sound design, spoken word and experimental image.”

The Prize for the Best Film for Tolerance, donated by the Federal Foreign Ministry, has been awarded to the film A Barcode Scanner (IRQ 2019) by David Shook, based on the poem of the same name by Zêdan Xelef. From the jury citation: “The poetic voice and the cinematographical eye become mediums against oppression and despair by simply simply and clearly scanning what is there, repeatedly and impeccably, like the barcodes of a condensed everyday life experience.”

The Ritter Sport Film Prize, donated by Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co. KG, has gone to The Opposites Game (USA 2019) by Anna Samo and Lisa La Bracio, based on the poem of the same name by Brendan Constantine. From the jury citation: “It is a 5 minute mini drama. It shows how a fight about poetry becomes poetry. While fighting it is activating a wild stream of moving images on screen and in the heads. It is literally a poetry film.”

An Honourable Mention was given to La mujer imaginaria / The imaginary woman (COL, EST 2019) by Laura Benavides, based on the poem of the same name by Laura B. Ramírez.

Following the ZEBRA’s call for entries, international film makers have made film versions of this year’s Festival Poem, "Lethe" by Batswana poet TJ Dema. The three best film versions by Thelma Tunyi and Shanley Fermin (USA)Aleksandra Łojowska (Poland) and Emilia Strzałka (Poland) were shown at the festival. 

The film programme for children and young people was shown in Berlin schools. The schoolchildren’s audience jury chose the film Know Snow (RUS 2020) by Maria Dubrovina, based on the poem of the same name by Anastasia Shakhova, as the winner of the ZEBRINO Prize for the Best Poetry Film for Children and Young People.

The whole Festival programme is available as Video on Demand on Vimeo for € 7.99 at vimeo.com/ondemand/zebrapoetryfilmfestival. The 16 Prism films will also be released online a few at a time over the coming weeks. With 250 animations, features and experimental films as well as documentaries they provide an insight into the diversity of the poetry film scene – from classical Modernism to current university productions. The areas of thematic focus include Human Rights, Feminism and Eco Poetry.

The ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival is hosted by the Haus für Poesie. It is sponsored by funding from the Land Berlin / the Berlin Senate Department for Culture and Europe and from the Federal Foreign Office, and gratefully acknowledges the kind support of the Goethe-Institut, Alfred Ritter GmbH & Co KG, interfilm Berlin and the Austrian Cultural Forum. The Canada/Québec Focus is part of Canada’s culture program as Guest of Honour at the Frankfurt Book Fair 2020/21 and is supported by the Government of Canada (Embassy of Canada) and the Government of Québec (Delegation of the Government of Québec). It is presented by taz, Berliner Fenster, Berliner Filmfestivals and EXBERLINER.