After the End of Utopia: A Screening of Films by Dane Komljen

After the End of Utopia: A Screening of Films by Dane Komljen

Dane Komljen, All the Cities of the North (still), 2016.

After the End of Utopia: A Screening of Films by Dane Komljen

Admission starts at $5

June 23, 2022, 7pm
172 Classon Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11205

I don’t make films about things that I know. When there is something I can’t see, I make a film in order to see it.
—Dane Komljen

Join us at e-flux Screening Room on Thursday, June 23, 7pm for the screening of Dane Komljen’s All Still Orbit (2016) and All the Cities of the North (2016), introduced by the artist via video call. This screening features two works by the Serbian filmmaker that hover between fantasy and recollection, creating a cinematic space situated between utopian dreams and post-utopian reality. 

All Still Orbit portrays Brasilia’s architectural ambition as the subject of a social nightmare in which the dream city’s development workforce is compelled to work in deplorable circumstances. All the Cities of the North features Brasilia again, this time in the context of the Lagos International Trade Fair Convention Center, which was developed and constructed by the now-defunct Yugoslav company Energoprojekt. Although the ideal urbanist vision did not come true, the material environment has recently been repopulated by locals, becoming a source of affections for and perceptions of a post-utopian time. Komljen’s works, which creatively investigate modernist urban utopias, still hold the promise of the future, but only in the form of a subjective, spectral dream ignited by sleep and malaise.

All Still Orbit (2016, 23 minutes)
All Still Orbit links together two apparently unrelated moments in the construction of Brasilia: a dream by an Italian saint used to justify its creation and a small city built by workers constructing a new capital to house them and their families. How do you make sense of a city built on a dream? Are all dreams made equal? Sometimes a documentary can feel like a fairy tale.

All the Cities of the North (2016, 97 minutes)
In the darkly wooded grounds and concrete blocks of what was once a resort complex, two men share an enigmatic, tender non-binary life. They doze together, scavenge the grounds and urinate outdoors before the third man shows up. In this richly suggestive and moving elegy to lost utopias, no words are exchanged and speech only comes in monologues, taking up questions on the architecture and administration of human sociality. One recurring thread in All the Cities of the North concerns how people use and recycle buildings, engineer the landscapes, and appropriate spaces in ways for which they were not intended. The flurries of narration allude to socialistic objectives in architecture, whether in a Yugoslav company’s construction work for the International Trade Fair in Lagos, Nigeria, or the plans for the twentieth-century city of Brasília.

For more information contact

Film, Utopia, Urbanism, Labor & Work
Documentary, Sleep & Dreams, Post-socialism, Eastern Europe

Dane Komljen was born in 1986 in Banja Luka and is based in Berlin. He studied film direction as well as art at the Faculty of Dramatic Arts in Belgrade, Le Fresnoy in Tourcoing, and the Universität der Künste in Berlin. His second feature-length film, Afterwater, just had its world premiere at the Berlinale Forum 2022. His first feature, All the Cities of the North, premiered at the Locarno Film Festival and was subsequently shown at over sixty festivals. His short films have been shown and awarded at the Festival de Cannes, Locarno Film Festival, IFF Rotterdam, FID Marseille, Toronto IFF, New York FF, and Sarajevo FF.

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