Erika Balsom

- [Juror’s Statement]

The power of cinema is, for me, essentially a documentary power—even when films craft fictional universes. The medium takes us out of the world, into the dark, in order to better encounter that world. I am reminded of the words of Serge Daney: “There always comes a moment when you have to pay your debt to the cash-box of sincere belief and dare to believe in what you see. [ . . . ] There has to be some risk and some virtue, that is, some value, in the act of showing something to someone who is capable of seeing it. Learning how to ‘read’ the visual and ‘decode’ messages would be useless if there wasn’t still the minimal, but deepseated, conviction that seeing is superior to not seeing, and that what isn’t seen ‘in time’ will never really be seen.”

Erika Balsom

Reader in Film Studies at King’s College London. Author of four books, including After Uniqueness: A History of Film and Video Art in Circulation (2017) and TEN SKIES (2021). Her criticism appears regularly in venues such as Artforum and Cinema Scope. With Hila Peleg, co-curator of “No Master Territories: Feminist Worldmaking and the Moving Image” (HKW Berlin/Museum of Modern Art Warsaw, 2022–23) and co-editor of the books Feminist Worldmaking and the Moving Image (2022) and Documentary Across Disciplines (2016). In 2018, she was awarded a Philip Leverhulme Prize and the Katherine Singer Kovacs essay award from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies.