DOK Leipzig – Being There

Time for a small report after three days at a festival that it is always pleasant to visit in a city, that it is always pleasant to visit. Eine Kulturstadt, that has developed immensely since the days around 1990 where I attended the festival for the first time nach der Wende. Now the festival centre is in the Museum der Bildenden Künste, in the new building from 2004. This is where the very well functioning digitalised video library is situated and where your blogging correspondent for a couple of festivals have passed hours in front of the computer picking films from the big catalogue. With good image and sound. Professional it is, as most of the elements of a festival that is well visited and visible in the streets where accredited professionals and documentary film buffs walk from one place to the other with their red bags, heading for not only cinemas bul also places where discussions take place within the industry section of the festival. I counted that today thursday there are 10 seminars/workshops taking place during daytime and evening, from ”outreach and campaigning in focus” to ”cross media case studies” – to, networking is important, the daily get-together with a couple of non-hearable speeches and glasses of wine being carried around.

Food is important and the festival centre has a fine café with fine food mastered by the same people who stand behind Hotel (and restaurant) Michaëlis, where I usually stay. This year I am at Motel One, two minutes from everything, a big machine that is ok and where most of the festival guests are staying.

Photo from the best film I saw today: Thomas Riedelsheimer’s beautiful work on the Japanese artist Susumu Shingu, “a journey through the world as he follows his life-long dream-project and explores the energy of wind and water.” Title: Breathing Earth, Germany, 2012, 93 mins.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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