From April 27 to 29, 2016, the Austrian Cultural Forum New York (ACFNY) presented the inaugural edition of the Austrian American Short Film Festival (AASFF). Initiated and co-founded by ACFNY Director Christine Moser and curator Stephanie Falkeis, the bilateral festival featured short films in all forms and genres by promising young artists and filmmakers from the following collaborating universities: Columbia University, New York University, School of Visual Arts, Film Academy Vienna, University of Applied Arts Vienna, Academy of Fine Arts Vienna.
The independent jury – composed of Austrian filmmaker Jessica Hausner, acting as Head of Jury, American filmmaker Sara Driver, and David Schwartz, Chief Curator of the Museum of the Moving Image – selected the best Austrian and the best American film in each of the categories “Narrative”, “Experimental and Conceptual”, and “Documentary and Hybrid.
Filmmaker Patrick Vollrath, whose short film Everything will be okay was nominated for an Oscar (2016) and won the Student Academy Award (2015) as well as the prize for Best Short Film by the Austrian Academy of Film, was in residence during the festival and presented his short in the framework of a special screening together with Jessica Hausner’s latest feature-length work Armour Fou.
Additional special events complementing the screenings at the ACFNY included Q&As with the filmmakers, a private masterclass with Jessica Hausner, stimulating networking events as well as an in-depth talk with Jessica Hausner about her work.