Alan Marcus1 February
In The Birch Grove (2012): Filming in Auschwitz - Birkenau
Dr Alan Marcus, Head of the Department of Film and Visual Culture, University of Aberdeen
Department of Film Studies, King's College London 6pm, Wednesday 1 February 2012 Arthur and Paula Lucas Lecture Theatre, Strand Building, S-2.18
Dr Marcus will deliver a paper about experimental observational approaches in documentary film to the stature and significance of place, its layering, reinvention and interpretation. Included in his presentation will be a screening of his latest film, In The Birch Grove (2012), the final part of his five-year practice-as-research project, In Time of Place: a series of filmic meditations and publications investigating selected symbolic sites associated with Jewish identity, the Jewish diaspora and the Holocaust.
A cultural historian and film practitioner, Dr Alan Marcus is the author of Relocating Eden (University Press of New England, 1995) and Out In the Cold (1992), and co-editor with Dietrich Neumann of Visualising the City (Routledge, 2007). He has been guest editor of special issues of the journals History of Photography (2006), The Journal of Architecture (2006) and Film Studies (2007) and is currently working on an edited book, Berlin: Screening a Metropolis (forthcoming with Manchester University Press).
His documentary films include The People of the Four Winds (1989, about a Sami reindeer-herding community in northern Sweden, broadcast on Channel 4) and Heimatland (2000, about former German prisoners-of-war who settled in North Wales). Alan's practice-as-research project, In Time of Place, includes the video installation Beautiful Dachau (2006), and the films In Place of Death (made in Dachau, 2008), The Ghetto (made in Venice, 2009), The Cemetery (made in Prague, 2010), and The Memorial (made at the New England Holocaust Memorial in Boston, also 2010).
The Memorial has been selected for screening at the SCMS 2012 conference in Boston. Supported by the Carnegie Trust, the University of Aberdeen, and the Granada Centre for Visual Anthropology at the University of Manchester, the films have been widely shown and discussed at conferences and festivals in North America, the UK, Poland and Israel.
Alan recently completed two further films on the research theme of post-traumatic urban space in Guernica, One Market Day (2011), and Hiroshima, One Hot Day (2011).