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The Great Museum

Das grosse Museum
Director: Johannes Holhausen

Austria, 2014, documentary, 94 min., V
A curious, witty and humorous peek behind the scenes at a world-famous cultural institution. The film offers glimpses of the day-to-day routine at the museum, but focuses primarily on micro-dramas featuring museum employees – from the managing director to the cleaning services team. How not to worry for a conservator who discovers that a Rubens painting has been painted over several times?
 
The film crew spent more than two years gathering material at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. This film – a great example of attentive style of direct cinema with no off-screen commentary, no interviews and no background music – captured a portrait of a public cultural institution trying to maintain its integrity by balancing between budgetary issues and competitive pressure.
 
About the director:
 
Johannes Holzhausen – born in 1960 in Salzburg. He studied Art History. In 1985 and 1986 he and a group of others organised the lecture series “art and concepts of art”, presenting internationally renowned art scholars and art historians. Later at the Vienna Film Academy he made his first documentary, “Those Loved by God”, which was met with critical acclaim at numerous film festivals.
 
He is co-founder and associate of Navigator Film, a Vienna based production company for creative documentaries since 1996. In 2003 Johannes Holzhausen was a member of the jury for the international competition at the International Leipzig Festival for Documentary and Animated Film. From 2005 to 2008 he was a member of the advisory board for films at the Austrian Federal Ministry for Education, the Arts and Culture.
Section: Main programme

Screenplay: Johannes Holzhausen, Constantin Wulff

Dir. of Photography: Joerg Burger