Hong Kong International Film Festival

Fragments of Kubelka

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 01 April, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 01 April, 2012, 12:00am

When Peter Kubelka appeared at a screening of his short films at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, he didn't just do a conventional question-and-answer session: instead, he delivered what was more like a full-fledged lecture.

He explained his experimental aesthetics with the help of a wide variety of artefacts he has collected from around the world through the years. And he talked about how the cultures from which the artefacts are drawn affect how he treats the art of filmmaking - and art in general.

It was one of the festival's most interesting and informative events, with the 78-year-old Austrian filmmaker - who co-founded the Austrian Film Museum in 1964 with Peter Konlechner - giving voice to many of the theories he has employed to produce what he dubs 'metric cinema', works which are produced with a clear formalist structure in mind. For example, his one-minute film from 1957, Adebar, is constructed with specific rules dictating shot lengths and the alterations between images in positive and negative.

Kubelka last visited Hong Kong to accompany screenings of his work - which amounted to 62 minutes in total - at the Hong Kong International Film Festival. While he's not here this year, his lectures are - in the form of Fragments of Kubelka, Martina Kudlacek's four-hour documentary in which Kubelka delivers his informative and humorous presentations about the guiding principles of his work.

Fragments of Kubelka, Friday, 1.45pm, Science Museum