A cinematic exploration of the sea and seashore, a journey that takes us to the depths of the ocean and of cinema. A film program curated and introduced by Erika Balsom.


GUNVOR NELSON — SE/US, 1973 – 16MM on digital – 15’

SHARON LOCKHART – US/SE, 2022 – digital – 35’

27/10 20:00 KAAP Oostende

The start of Monokino in 2018 coincided with the publication of An Oceanic Feeling: Cinema and the Sea by Erika Balsom. This book, an exploration of the role of the sea in films of various genres, served as a significant source of inspiration for Monokino. It is with great pleasure that we invite Erika Balsom to put together a program in which we leave the mainland and immerse ourselves in images made through an encounter with water.

A Swedish woman in America, an American woman in Sweden. Two very different films made nearly fifty years apart, both exploring the choreography of bodies in relation to water and the night sky.

Gunvor Nelson’s Moon’s Pool is a kaleidoscopic film that evokes psychic and corporeal unboundedness through the submersion of the filmmaker’s own
body in water. Nelson dissolves the clarity of the image into deep blue undulations that glimmer and flow with intimate intensity. Plunging into a fluid and expansive realm, Moon’s Pool draws out affinities between sexuality, the aquatic, and the cosmic.

Sharon Lockhart’s Eventide is a single 30-minute take of the Gotland seashore at dusk. As the light fades into inky darkness, the camera remains still, its gaze unwavering as a woman enters the scene, flashlight in hand. In time, she is joined by five others. What are they searching for? Meteors shoot through the sky above them. Lockhart’s deceptively simple film is a plea for careful looking, a reckoning with what cannot be seen, and an act of grieving – all caught between the ordinary and the miraculous.

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With the support of the Flemish Audiovisual Fund and the city of Ostend.
In collaboration with Beursschouwburg.
Thanks to Galerie neugerriemschneider, Galerie Jan Mot.


Tickets are €10 of €7 with discount and for sale via Uit in Oostende. You can contact info@monokino.org for more info.

SUPPORT — We currently work without subsidies, so your support is more than welcome and literally brings light to the screen:

BE80 7340 4532 5277     BIC: KREDBEBB

Payment reference: ‘Gift’.

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A gift of € 100 will only cost you € 55.

Artistic coordination: Anouk De Clercq, Godart Bakkers
General coordination: Ditte Claus
Artistic team: Eric de Kuyper, Xavier Garcia Bardon
Production team: Bob Mees, Jef Declercq, Johan Opstaele, Noah Heylen
Communication: Cynthia Vandenbruaene
Graphic design: Michaël Bussaer. Webdesign: Dominique Callewaert.

With the support of Auguste Orts, CINEMATEK, KAAP, KASK School of Arts Gent, Onderzoeksfonds Universiteit Gent, Vlaams Audiovisueel Fonds.

Whoever walks in Ostend today is confronted with a fantastic eclecticism: a brutal grey apartment block exists next to the glorious Thermae Palace. The mighty, almost Stalinist, building of De Grote Post dominates the Hendrik Serruyslaan. A former department store houses a museum for contemporary art. Belle-époque houses are hidden in the quiet but stately streets.

In 2017, one void struck artist Anouk De Clercq: that glorious film culture of Henri Storck, James Ensor or Raoul Servais had disappeared from the streets. With the closure of the Rialto cinema, the last independent cinema from the Ostend cinema circuit also disappeared. Against such an extraordinary backdrop, with the sea as a large projection surface for images, stories and histories, that is such a shame.

And so the idea of Monokino ripens: one room, marked by an equally fantastic eclecticism, where cinema can be itself again. One room where long and short films, film classics, auteur cinema, video art, experimental films, animation, or the work of young makers can find a place. Monokino shows, questions, responds, engages in conversation, invites, welcomes, puts in perspective. Monokino is a place of, by and for people from Ostend, for professionals and enthusiasts, for young and old, for those from here and those from there.

The films that Monokino wants to show don’t only live on the screen. They also spread between residents, spectators, and makers. In that sense, Monokino is also Kopfkino: a mental cinema, where images get the chance to live and multiply.

That’s how Monokino drifts nomadically through those eclectic streets of Ostend and settles in the heads and hearts of the people of Ostend. Soon it’ll moor for good.

Monokino wants to drive cinema into the 21st century and illuminate the adventurous side of film. While we strive for a permanent place as anchorage for cinefiles from Ostend and beyond, Monokino operates as a nomadic film platform.

The sea is Monokino’s favourite projection surface for images, stories and histories. In anticipation of our next screening, we’ve started to collect a list of films in which the sea plays a main or supporting role. Can you think of a film that’s not already on our list? We’d love to hear about it via info@monokino.org.

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