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Still from Forest of Echoes  


AASFF 2017 DAY 1

WEDNESDAY, MAR 22 2017, 06:30 PM

The Austrian Cultural Forum is pleased to present the 2nd edition of the Austrian American Short Film Festival (AASFF). Initiated and co-founded by ACFNY Director Christine Moser and curator Stephanie Falkeis, the festival runs from March 22 to 24, 2017 at the Austrian Cultural Forum New York.


6.30 PM

Opening Ceremony


Films in Competition: SCREENING SESSION A
Ghost Copy by Christiana Perschon, 2:30 min (Academy of Fine Arts Vienna)
Nocturne in Black by Jimmy Keyrouz, 23 min (Columbia University)
Man above the Fog by Adam Liam Rose, 5 min (Columbia University)

Q&A with Filmmakers

Special Screening:

Forest of Echoes by Filmmaker in Residence Luz Olivares Capelle, 30 min (Film Academy Vienna, University of Music and performing Arts Vienna)

Q&A with Filmmaker in Residence Luz Olivares Capelle


Opening Reception with Guests, Filmmakers & Audience 

Click here for day 2 and day 3.


Ghost Copy
Allegorical images flash up between black frames: Over this, a sound montage of scraps of conversation and noise. Inspired by the compositional principle of Günter Brus’ Wiener Spaziergang (1965) documented on 8mm film, Ghost Copy synthesizes amateur analogue films of the Austrian war and post-war generation with digital sound fragments from mobile phone recordings found in social networks. Repurposed found footage sets into motion a regenerative process whereby the disembodied visual voices of the past reach from within the film's frames, into the present.

Nocturne in Black
In a war-ravaged Middle Eastern neighborhood, a young pianist struggles to rebuild his piano after it is destroyed by Jihadists.

Man above the Fog
In Man above the Fog, a politician (played by Jack Mulcahy) reads from a seemingly endless stack of papers. The film takes the form of a Weekly Presidential Address with text appropriated from the transcripts of various political speeches. As the speech progresses, the form begins to unravel.  



The Austrian American Short Film Festival is an annual three-day festival presented by the Austrian Cultural Forum New York. The festival features short films in all forms and genres by promising young artists and filmmakers from Austria and the United States. The mission of the AASFF is to increase intercultural dialogue and to foster interconnectivity and the exchange of ideas between Austria and the U.S. by providing a platform for young, emerging filmmakers. The festival also aims at introducing emerging Austrian talent to the U.S. film community as well as showcasing work by American filmmakers in Austria. Austrian and American films will be presented together, with prizes awarded in three categories: Best Narrative Short Film, Best Experimental/Conceptual Short Film, and Best Documentary/Hybrid Short Film.


Born in Rufino, Argentina, Luz Olivares Capelle lives and works in Vienna, Austria. Luz Olivares Capelle studied Film Directing at the National Institute for Cinematographic Production and Experimentation in Buenos Aires, E.N.E.R.C. Following that, she obtained a Master‘s degree in the Film Directing class of Michael Haneke at the Film Academy Vienna, University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna. In addition, she studied in the Masterclass for Drawing and Graphics with Prof. Gunter Damisch, at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. As a filmmaker she has won various awards including Best Experimental & Conceptual Film for El Ritual del Color at the Austrian American Short Film Festival (AASFF) in New York 2016. Her most recent film, Wald der Echos/Forest of Echoes (2017), has accumulated many prizes already, including Best Short Film at the Österreichischer Filmpreis, the Max Ophüls Prize, the Grand Prix International Short Award at the Cork Film Festival, and the Best Austrian Short Film at the Vienna Independent Shorts festival.

Forest of Echoes
A teenager, Christina, loses her friends in the forest. Looking for them she finds the bodies of three drowned kids on the shore of a lagoon. On summer holiday, deep in the woods, three kids, cousins, are playing around a lake when they find a drowned young woman drifting in the water. Games, lies, and rituals unfold into a circular time in which death loses its ultimacy. What is real and what is a mirage? Who is dreaming and who is being dreamed?


Virgil Widrich, born 1967 in Salzburg, works on numerous multimedia and film productions. He is one of the founders and Managing Directors of the multimedia company checkpointmedia GmbH, University Professor of Art & Science at the University of Applied Arts Vienna and owner and Managing Director of  Virgil Widrich Film- und Multimediaproduktions G.m.b.H. His first feature film is Heller als der Mond (Brighter than the Moon). His short film Copy Shop won 35 international awards and was nominated for the Oscar. Fast Film premiered in Cannes 2003 and won 36 awards until today. His newest film is Night of a 1000 Hours. Virgil Widrich lives in Vienna.

David Schwartz is Chief Curator of Museum of the Moving Image, where he has worked since 1985. He oversees the Museum's wide-ranging film programs and changing exhibitions. He is a visiting professor at Purchase College, the host of the Westchester Cinema Club and the Cinema Arts Centre Preview Club. He is also the programming director of First Time Fest, a New York-based film festival devoted to the first films of emerging and established directors. He has been on numerous juries, including the international competition jury at BAFICI (in Buenos Aires) and FIDLab (in Marseille, France) in 2015.

Marisa Mazria-Katz is a NY-based journalist/editor born and raised in Los Angeles. She has contributed to numerous publications and television channels on culture, politics and design on prestigious and highly regarded Newspapers and Magazines, such as The New York Times, Financial Times, The Guardian, The Economist, Wall Street Journal, Vogue, Forbes, just to name a few. In 2009, Marisa was the recipient of a US State Department grant that helped to establish a program that teaches citizen journalism in a severely marginalized district of Casablanca, Morocco. In December 2011, she began a new chapter of the program. Today, Marisa is the editor of Creative Time initiative called Creative Time Reports. Under Marisa’s tenure, the website has partnered to co-publish Creative Time Reports content with The Guardian, Al Jazeera America, Foreign Policy, The New Yorker, Slate, Salon, The Intercept and many more.


Stephanie Falkeis is an interdisciplinary artist, writer and filmmaker based in Vienna, Austria. She is currently a magistra candidate at the University of Applied Arts Vienna in the class of Transmedia Art (Studio Brigitte Kowanz) having studied Directing and Screenwriting at Harvard University (Harvard Summer Program 2011) and Fine Art and Critical Theory at Newcastle University (2014). Her art installations were shown at Lenikus Gallery, Vienna and Broadacre House, Newcastle, among others, while her filmic work screened at Festivals such as the XWRA Video and Media Art Festival in Greece and the Vienna Content Award. Her short film 100 Years of Votiv Cinema was selected to screen in cinemas for several weeks in celebration of the 100th Anniversary of Vienna Arthouse Cinema Votivkino.

The Prize Winning films will be shown on March 27th at the Anthology Film Archives. More information here.