Someone passed some bliss among the crowd.
And we walked back to the road, unchained.
In order to get attuned to the coming festival, which will take place from October 22 to November 1, we are going to share some of our favourite memories from the history of the Viennale. We have been in existence for almost 60 years and during the last months we were compelled to think about what really matters about our festival. One important notion we came across more than once along the way is connected to memories.
A festival can create a vibrant framework around the experience of a film. There is a space and a time for meetings, surprises, getting lost, discussions and parties. Though this might seem like merely a standard we have gotten used to in recent years, it is much more. We do not only remember the narrative, a scene from, or the aesthetics of a film – we also remember the circumstances we saw it in. This singular experience is decisive for an understanding of, or a critical stand against, the world we live in. These memories constitute what is essential to a festival experience.
Every week we are going to share moving images from our past and some special photographs. We begin with these snapshots of our audience. It goes without saying that a film festival needs an audience to sit, watch, discuss, fall asleep, dream, dance, wait, laugh and cry together in front of a screen. The power of cinema can bring change, consolation, upheaval, feelings and thoughts; it is a power that cannot exist without an audience.