Co-author: Bik van der Pol

Exhibition: Community Life

Location: Cour du Couvent, Luxembourg – Bonnevoie, Luxembourg

Year: 2007

Curator: Hou Hanru

Production: Art Public Contemporain, Paris, Luxembourg Cultural Capital 2007, Luxembourg

Courtesy: the artists

Photos: Jos van der Pol

Impressed by the simplicity of Robert Smithson’s concept for Cinema Cavern, we desired to use a site as it is given. But instead of being able to use the caves beneath the city of Luxembourg as a temporary cinema, we situated our cinema in the small quarter-of-a-circle shaped square, Cour du Couvent in the neighbourhood of Bonnevoie in Luxembourg. Working with clear parameters and limits, we were challenged to realize the maximum potential of the existing situation, a potential hidden not only within the physical context of the place but also within the human resources of the neighbourhood and the greater city of Luxembourg.

Our aim was to design a modest platform for film lovers; a meeting point for a local film club and its audience; a programme which would challenge people to make films, create discussions around contemporary topics and provide a video rental access to the collected movies for the neighbourhood. That endeavour sparked a collaboration with the existing local film club Filmreakter, a nonprofit cooperative run by its filmmaking members who live or work in Luxembourg. The site’s prospects for creating a meeting place for this self-organized community meant that only a minimum of facilities were necessary to function at a technically and economically acceptable level. For its minimum requirements, the cinema configuration consisted of three elements: a seating tribune, a screen and a box with logistics.

Sunset Cinema was a programme from sunset onwards. When there was no screening going on, the structure was to create — by its presence — an urban space hopefully “infested with promise and expectation”.