Jacques Aumont

After training as an engineer (Polytechnique, 1960, Télécom., 1963-65), Jacques Aumont worked, among others, at the Research Department of the ORTF where he was in charge of the image sector (1967-70), and at the Cahiers du cinéma (1967-1974). He taught for forty years (1970-2009), mainly at the Department of Film and Media Studies of the Université Sorbonne-Nouvelle Paris 3, but also in Lyon, Lisbon, Berkeley, Iowa City, Madison, Utrecht, Montreal. He was director of studies at E.H.E.S.S. (1995-2009) and taught at the Beaux-Arts de Paris (2009-2018).

His research and publications focus mainly on an approach to filmmaking that gives full scope to the power of the image. He studied, among other things, the relationship between cinema and painting, the representation of the face in cinema, the uses and values of color, the play of light and shadow, etc.. More recently, he has devoted several works to film fiction and its links with the materiality of the image.

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Emmanuelle André

Emmanuelle André is Professor in Film Studies at the Université de Paris where she teaches the aesthetics of cinema and the history of forms, as they are, in cinema, reshaped by the human, medical, social and natural sciences.

She has published works that link film aesthetics, art history and the anthropology of images: Esthétique du motif. Cinéma, musique, peinture (2007); Le Choc du sujet. De l’hystérie au cinéma (2011), L’Œil détourné. Mains et imaginaires tactiles au cinéma (2020), L’Attrait de la Lune (2020). With Dork Zabunyan, she wrote L’Attrait du téléphone (2013) and with Jean-Michel Durafour, she works on insects in cinema.

Her interest in the history of the gaze has led her to co-direct research programs on the motif of the eye, be it distracted or relayed, in images. Her recent research leads her to examine the collections of drawings deposited in film libraries that open the film to a mental and cerebral imaginary.

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Antonio Somaini

Antonio Somaini is Professor of Film Studies, Visual Studies and Media Theory at the Université Sorbonne Nouvelle – Paris 3, where he heads the Cinema and Audiovisual Department (CAV).

His research develops in the fields of film studies, visual studies and media theory from a dual perspective:

a. on the one hand, they study the theories of cinema and media of the 1920s and 1930s (Béla Balázs, Walter Benjamin, Ernst Bloch, Sergueï M. Eisenstein, Siegfried Kracauer, László Moholy-Nagy, Dziga Vertov) in order to relate them to questions that cut across contemporary cinema, image and media theory ;

b. on the other hand, they are interested in contemporary visual culture, addressing and situating in a historical perspective subjects such as the new forms of “machine vision” or the aesthetic, epistemological and political issues of the distinction between high and low definition images.

Among his main publications are the books Cultura visuale. Immagini, sguardi, media, dispositivi [Visual Culture: Images, Glances, Media, Devices] (with Andrea Pinotti, Turin, 2016, tr. fr. to be published in 2021 with the Presses du réel) and Ejzenštejn. Il cinema, le arti, il montaggio [Eisenstein. Cinema, art history, editing] (Turin, Einaudi, 2011, tr. fr. to be published in 2021 with Mimésis. He has edited texts by Walter Benjamin, Sergei Eisenstein, László Moholy-Nagy and Dziga Vertov in French, English and Italian, and has co-edited several collective volumes, including La haute et la basse définition des images. Photography, cinema, contemporary art, visual culture (with Francesco Casetti, Milan, Mimesis, forthcoming in 2021), Rethinking the Medium. Matter and Technique in Contemporary Art and Cinema (with Larisa Dryansky and Riccardo Venturi, Dijon, les Presses du réel, to be published in 2021), and Pandemic Media (with Philipp Dominik Keidl, Laliv Melamed, Vinzenz Hediger, Berlin, Meson Press, 2020).

Antonio Somaini was also the principal curator of the exhibitions Time Machine: Cinematic Temporalities (Parma, 12 January – 3 May 2020, catalog published by Skira in 2020, website www.timemachineexhibition. com) and Il dono / The Gift (Siena, New York, Chicago, Scottsdale [AZ] 2001-03, catalog published by Charta in 2001) and the associate curator of exhibitions held at the Fondazione Prada in Venice (The Small Utopia. Ars Multiplicata, 2012) and at the Milan Triennial (Arts & Foods, 2015, on the occasion of Expo 2015).

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Jérémie Brugidou

A former student at the École Normale Supérieure de Lyon (2009-2015), PhD in film studies and filmmaker, Jeremie Brugidou is a multidisciplinary artist-researcher navigating between aesthetics, anthropology, ethology, and ecosophy. He is the author of a thesis entitled Towards an Ecology of Appearance: The Mystery of the Genesis of Forms from a Bioluminescent Annunciation in James Cameron, defended at the University of Paris 8 in 2020, co-directed by Christa Blümlinger and Dominique Lestel (ENS Paris). He collaborates with Fabien Clouette within the structure Les plans du Pélican to produce and direct together their documentary films and write their texts. 

He directed with Fabien Clouette the feature-length documentary Bx46 (World Premiere at FID Marseille 2014) and with David Jaclin the film Poacher’s Moon (financed by the University of Ottawa’s anthropology research lab, HumAnimaLab, by Les plans du Pélican with the support of the CNAP, and produced by Les Volcans with the support of the CNC aide au développement renforcé), currently in selection.

Now a post-doctoral researcher in aesthetics within the project “Aesthetics in the Present” for the Balzan Foundation, he is the author and co-author of texts in maritime anthropology and cinema. At the center of his theoretical and artistic practice is the interaction of humans with other-than-humans, notably through the images we make, and our capacity to be affected by fragile, evanescent and metamorphic forms of light such as bioluminescence. He thus proposes to think of a photopolitics of ecology. 

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Marion Grébert

A former student at the École Normale Supérieure de Lyon (2010-2014) and a graduate of the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts de Paris (2015), Marion Grébert holds a PhD in art history from Sorbonne Universités after defending in December 2019 a thesis directed by Arnauld Pierre (Invisible Women. The Art of Disappearing in Female Photographic Self-Portraiture. Vivian Maier, Francesca Woodman). Both a researcher and an artist, she favours multidisciplinary approaches that cross iconography, epistemology, anthropology and ecology. Through writing, she seeks to capture the way in which certain images, from the most archaic to the most contemporary, can teach us how to disappear properly, this undertaking being understood and problematized in the context of what we collectively experience as an ecological tragedy. She is currently a post-doctoral researcher within the project “Aesthetics in the Present” for the Balzan Foundation, where she is working on the poetic and political consequences of the recent technological capacities of moving images to be filmed at night, both in experimental cinema dealing with immigration issues and in the field of animal documentary, without ignoring the background of classical fiction.


Aurel Rotival

Aurel Rotival holds a PhD in film studies. His thesis ‘Fireflies-Images. Christian Iconology and Heretical Marxism in European Cinema of the 1960s and 1970s, was supervised by Luc Vancheri and defended at the Université Lumière Lyon 2 in 2020. Building on this work,  which postulated the principle of a political re-polarisation of figurative formulas from the Christian vocabulary, his research makes part of a filmic image studies that has now largely acquired the principles of iconography. As a post-doctoral fellow in aesthetics for the Balzan Foundation, his current work continues to question the links that films and their motifs weave together with the mythological, cultural and religious heritage of human thought. At the crossroads of iconology, anthropology, theology and philosophy, the aim is to bring to light the principles of an analytical methodology capable of tracing these connections which offer cinema its historical and cultural depth, by making films the symbolic stage where the great procedures that underpin the intelligibility of the human condition are replayed.

Alexandra Anikina

Alexandra Anikina is a researcher, film-maker and media artist. She is Balzan Post-doctoral Fellow at Sorbonne Nouvelle University and Lecturer and Associate Researcher at the Centre for the Study of the Networked Image, London South Bank University. Her doctoral dissertation at Goldsmiths focused on political aesthetics of  ‘procedural films’—moving image works that use generative algorithmic techniques. She works with experimental film, game engines and lecture-performances and investigates algorithmic visual cultures and affects, image politics and platform economy. Her work has been shown internationally, including VI Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Gaîté Lyrique, Paris; Anthology Film Archives, New York; NCCA Moscow; Korean Film Archive and Art Sonje museum, Seoul; Sanatorium gallery, Istanbul; Krasnoyarsk Museum Biennale and, most recently, Schusev State Museum of Architecture, Moscow. Curator of IMPAKT 2018 ‘Algorithmic Superstructures’ and Digital Earth Fellow 2020-2021. Currently she is working on a monograph on procedural mediation, as well as on the themes of techno-animism and post-socialist mythologies.