Anthology Film Archives


January 19 – January 24

American filmmaker, cinematographer, photographer, visual anthropologist, and educator Skip Norman (aka Wilbert Reuben Norman Jr.) was born in Baltimore. In 1966 – following five years in Germany and Denmark, where he developed an interest in acting and directing alongside his studies dedicated to the German language and literature – he was accepted into the inaugural cohort of students at Berlin’s DFFB Film School. While there he befriended and worked alongside a group of artists and activists interested in the revolutionary potential of film, including Harun Farocki, Holger Meins, Helke Sander, and Gerd Conradt.

In addition to collaborating as cinematographer and assistant director on several of his classmates’ works, Norman authored a remarkable but little-seen body of documentary, experimental, and essay films in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Building upon and contributing to the incendiary work of his peers decrying the US war in Vietnam, he produced a number of equally urgent films about his experience as a Black man in both West Germany and in his home country. Upon his subsequent return to the United States, he continued to collaborate with notable filmmakers like Haile Gerima while further pursuing his interest in photography, both as an artistic practice and as the subject of his doctoral studies, before eventually teaching the craft in Cyprus.

While there have been selected presentations of Norman’s films in Germany in recent years, his work remains less known abroad. Featuring premieres of new restorations and newly produced subtitles, “Skip Norman: Here and There” is the first U.S. retrospective to explore Norman’s multifaceted, international career, bringing his practice as a filmmaker in dialogue with his work as a cinematographer and bridging his time on both sides of the Atlantic.
“Skip Norman: Here and There” has been guest-curated by Jesse Cumming, who wrote the series description above, as well as the individual program descriptions. The series is co-presented with the German Film Office, an initiative of the Goethe-Institut and German Films.

Special thanks to Hanife Aliefendioglu; Mirra Bank; Jesse Cumming; Greg de Cuir Jr.; Ismail Gökçe; Karina Griffith; Anke Hahn & Masha Matzke (Deutsche Kinemathek); Alexis Norman; Volker Pantenburg (Harun Farocki Institut); Joanna Raczynska; Josh Siegel (MoMA); Sara Stevenson (German Film Office); and Alexandra Symons-Sutcliffe.

A selection of the newly restored films will be presented at The Museum of Modern Art on Thursday, January 18, as part of “To Save and Project: The 20th MoMA International Festival of Film Preservation”; for more info visit:

In addition, on Saturday, January 20, the German Film Office will host a free public program entitled “Skip Norman in Relation” at the Goethe-Institut New York, organized and presented by Greg de Cuir Jr, the co-founder and artistic director of Kinopravda Institute (Belgrade, Serbia). Select screenings of Norman’s films will be complemented by talks from a panel of experts dealing with key themes that connect Norman’s work with a wider aesthetic and cultural context. For more info visit:

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