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Many documentaries directed by Róża Berger-Fiedler in the GDR occupy a special position. First of all, this refers to the themes, people and events that the filmmaker, who was born in France in 1940 as the daughter of Polish Jews, made the focus of her work. Be it the biography of the former head of the "Jewish Department" of the Dresden Gestapo, who had lived unnoticed for decades in the GDR - the country that had taken up the cause of anti-fascism and had always denounced the fact that former Nazis were making a career for themselves in the Federal Republic. Or Berger-Fiedler's pronounced interest in Jewish life in Berlin, which she recalled in her film about the Jewish cemetery in Weißensee and her grandmother buried there in the 1980s. The themes and people on which the films in this retrospective focus are at odds with the bulk of East German documentaries of the time.

The forms and working methods are also unusual. In Berger-Fiedler's films, different materials are set in relation to each other. Photographs are juxtaposed with filmic images, historical with contemporary, quotations from letters, files and other documents with commentaries that the filmmaker often speaks herself. Berger-Fiedler's voice is present in several films. This is not merely a formal decision, but an expression of a closeness that characterises Berger-Fiedler's relationship to historical subjects and the people she portrays: a successful university lecturer with whom Róża Berger-Fiedler once studied; a passionate politician who reassures herself of her feelings, life plans and political ideals in letters with her lover; an unconventional mayor who holds her own in the circle of her male colleagues and advocates a different style of politics.

Berger-Fiedler's unusual documentaries have been part of retrospectives in recent years that have taken a fresh look at the artistic contribution of women to German documentary history and to cinematic self-determination and equality. At the Zeughauskino, we invite you to focus on the filmmaking of Róża Berger-Fiedler and (re)watch six remarkable works. We are pleased that the filmmaker will be our guest at all events to discuss her work with us.