34. Stuttgarter Filmwinter
Festival for Expanded Media
6.1. bis 20.1.2021


Congratulations from the bottom of our hearts to the 2021 award winners!


International Competition Short Films

Jury: Andrea Martignoni, Marlene Denningmann and Thomas Renoldner

Norman Award 2021

"Na krancu miasta" by Daria Kaperek and "[ˈzi:lo]5" by Kerstin Honeit ex aequo

The jury’s award for film and video of 4,000 euros donated by the Land capital Stuttgart

Jury statement

Na krancu miasta by Daria Kaperek

The flowing camera movements in this surreal dream lead us out of the city, into nature, into the forest, into the wilderness. We float past chance encounters, the playing children, the wedding couple looking for a romantic setting for the best photo, the old woman with the petrified, desperate look, and other people on the fringes of society whose fates we can only guess. For a hypnotic musical and cinematic experience The NORMAN Prize goes ex aequo to Na krancu miasta / At the Edge of Town by Daria Kasperek.

[ˈzi:lo]5 by Kerstin Honeit

This movie really thinks inside the box. But inside that box is another box. And then another. And what is it that must be kept so well hidden? Shapeshifting objects, that can either be symbols of resistance or dominance, of cultural freedom or appropriation. It all depends on how we pack or unpack them. For a layered yet playful work dealing with colonial and patriarchal heritage the jury awards [‘zi:lo]5 by Kerstin Honeit.

Team-Work-Award 2021

"The Peepul Tree" by Sonja Feldmeier und "Masel Tov Cocktail" by Arkadij Khaet, Merle Kirchhoff and Mickey Paatzsch ex aequo

Award for the best team work, i.e. a film or a video production made in a joint effort by at least two people, donated with 2,000 euros by Ritter Sport.

Jury statement

The Peepul Tree by Sonja Feldmeier

The filmaker who made this documentary witnessed an extraordinary seven-man team effort in the difficult task of cutting down a centuries-old Peepul Tree, guilty of having grown up where the road would be widened. The tragedy, which takes place over a period of several days, testifies to the tough resistance of this giant of nature. The TEAM WORK prize goes Ex Aequo to THE PEEPUL TREE by Sonja Feldmeier.

Masel Tov Cocktail by Arkadij Khaet, Merle Kirchhoff and Mickey Paatzsch

Youthful frustration has always been appealing, but rarely so productive. From a so-called minority perspective Masel Tov Cocktail paints a more accurate picture of today's Germany than the international viewer usually gets to see. For it's daring mix of (re)education and entertainment the jury congratulates the writer and director team Arkadij Khaet, Merle Kirchhoff and Mickey Paatzsch.

Special Mentions

Liquid Traits of an Image Apparatus by Vera Sebert

For the playful use of images reminiscent of classic avant-garde film, for the humorous breaking of linguistic codes and expectations evoked by text instructions, and for the impressive use and rhythmization of noise and sound, which combines the divergent elements also to a compact musical composition, this Special Mention goes to Vera Sebert's “LIQUID TRAITS OF AN IMAGE APPARATUS”.

Hard-Headed Harmony by Michael Heindl

For precise sound editing in perfect synchrony of the powerful and long resonance of different hollow elastic bodies chosen with careful precision, the special mention goes to HARD-HEADED HARMONY by Michael Heindl.

2 Minutes Short Film Award

"La Chichigua" by Laura Sanz und "Message to heaven" by Vitalii Shupliak ex aequo

Jury prize with an amount of 1,500 euros for a work up to a maximum of 2 minutes.


Jury: Sabine Göbel und Johanne Mazeau-Schmid

Both films take up topics of the time: the Corona pandemic and its effects in communication and isolation, the digitalisation of life. This is done in very different visual forms but with an incredible density and in a complementary form.

Wand 5 Award

"Waithood" by Louisiana Mees

Legendary – the special award bestowed by Wand 5-members!

The selection committee: Täschi Fobler, Nici Halschke, Matthias Müller, Giovanna Thiery

The selection committee of the International Short Film Competition is very pleased to announce the winner of this year’s Wand5 Award.

A film like a chamber play in luxuriously transformed Airbnb apartments, showing the contrast between a lack of perspective and a lost youth. We particularly liked the cinematic implementation reflecting the desolate atmosphere of the young people. Congratulations to "Waithood" by Louisiana Mees.

The Filmwinter time is expanding - every time is Filmwinter time

Due to Corona, we - as many of our colleagues have already done - will realize our festival as an online edition. The best submissions for the International Competition, 2 Minute Shorts Competition and the recently launched new Buggles Award - Music Video Award of the Federal Land of Baden-Wuerttemberg in cooperation with Pop-Büro Stuttgart. As of 21 December, the contributions for the Buggles Award will be released and the voting for the Online Audience Award is on.

The exhibition Expanded Media with competing entries from the categories Media in Space and Network Culture will be postponed to late March 2021. The selection will be published on the Festival Website and also comprise interactive web and social web projects and interventions in public and virtual space, which already will be accessible during the online festival edition.

In the course of 2021, we are also looking forward to the Filmwinter programmes for children and youth, the continuation of the monthly series Shorties in cooperation with Fitz Theater animierter Formen and Produktionszentrum Tanz und Performance, as well as our new project "Passage" which, by way of walks with moving images, audio plays and live performances, will explore the city in new ways.

But what's even dearer to our hearts: may 2021 be the year of the cinemas! All curtains up!

Supporting Programme Gems - Premieres - Lectures - Workshops

Among the gems in the supporting programme we have the premiere of Emerging Artists - Contemporary Experimental Films and Video Art from Germany of AG Kurzfilm in cooperation with German Films. The interactive online reading Polyplot: Gefährliche Menschen - Exploration of possible futures through Science Fiction by Frank Rieger and Christiane Hütter in cooperation with Stadtbibliothek Stuttgart and CCCS, as well as the presentation of the continuously advancing media art project „Bottled Songs“ on terroristic online propaganda by Chloé Galibert-Laîné and Kevin B. Lee.

In the framework of the festival, Media Space offers workshops on the subject of augmented reality in performative arts, the subject Deep Fakes based on designing avatars in Zoom, and a lecture on digital ethics. Together with the cooperation partner mur.at – Initiative Netzkultur, we'll talk about the change of paradigms, artistic strategies and we'll introduce open source tools by and for artists.

Festival Motto: How I learned to love the Blob

The festival motto „How I learned to love the Blob“ puts the body at the centre. We named it "Blob" - acting as an alterable symbol for any relationship between bodies. In these special times, we understand the festival as a process: we break through our common structures and take to a laboratory. Our field of research: How will I learn to love the Blob? How do we approach a time that feels like a mix between the cult movies "The Blob" and "Dr. Strangelove"? What do closeness, distance, and touching mean in mood marked by COVID-19? How will media art succeed in touching us or oscillate between „Touch me“ and „Don’t touch“?

Filmwinter Mandala Notebook with Pictures by Mirai Mizue

We make notes of individual stops during this long trip in a notebook manufactured for exactly this purpose - our analogue notebook (Design by Demian Bern). The book comprises pictures as mandalas by the artist Mirai Mizue - an icon of animated film. For us, the dancing bodies in Mizue's works express a perspective full of hope. The bodies separate, to find themselves again. The give up their form to reappear in a new form. To give up one place in order to explore another is what we consider the courage to touch.

Information on the programme, festival pass, support options for artists

At www.filmwinter.de, the complete programme will be made accessible online with a fee-based festival pass. The festival pass is available for 10 euros but there's the option to pay more if you want. All further donations are transferred directly to „Künstler*innen Soforthilfe Stuttgart“ and the Initiative „Stuttgart gegen Rechts“. The items of the programme agenda will be activated according to the schedule of the festival dramaturgy and will generally be available for 48 hours.

An online festival area free of charge will feature interviews with filmmakers, film programmes of Merz Akademie and Kunstakademie Stuttgart, as well as the works of the Expanded Media exhibition.

Thank you to all our partners, supporters, colleagues, institutions and organisations, and especially our artists for their trust, to start and spend this special time with us.

In this visionary sense: "We will meet again..."