Students Abroad: Excursion to Paris

Photo: Chaeyun Kim

In the winter semester of 2021/22, the master’s students attended the two-day event about Video Essay held at the University of Paris in October 2021 with Prof. Kevin B Lee. This event aims to contextualize this new field in France, and to initiate international collaborations. 

The presentations gave a general overview and introduction to the topic of video essays, which was especially important for the participants who were not very familiar with the topic before. This allowed them to learn about the possibilities of using video essays in their own work.

Kevin B. Lee was one of the speakers who presented his video essay “Once Upon a Screen,” which was created during the pandemic. He made important references regarding the history and potentials of video essays and how these new forms can be integrated into our ideas of cinema.

In addition, Catherine Grant and Chloé Galibert-Laîné, among others, also talked about their work. Both were already guests at the Merz Akademie in 2019 at the Crossmedia Publishing Symposium “Creating Insights“.

Two master’s students summarize their impressions:

I was impressed how my thoughts and ideas were influenced by the conference that I started to think about presenting my future works through video essay as well.

I’ll start to learn how to present my VR/AR works through video essay, with VoiceOver so it’s more detailed than a powerpoint and more interested than an essay printed on paper.

Photo: Chaeyun Kim

The remaining time after the end of the event was used by the master’s students to explore Paris and visit various museums, e.g. the Museum of Modern Art Paris, the Musée d’Orsay, the Musée de l’Homme, the Musée Méliès, or the Centre Pompidou, which immediately transported one student back to the first semester art history seminar at the Merz Akademie. Thus, all students individually had the opportunity to visit exhibitions that corresponded to their interests and provided inspiration for their own work.

The excursion and especially the visit at the University of Paris was perceived by all as very informative and inspiring.

“I’ve been on many excursions or trips throughout the whole bachelor study, none of them had such a huge influence on my plans for the future study or life. Because of this excursion, I don’t see my Master study as an extension of my Bachelor anymore, I see it as a brand new gate with a brand new world behind it which I’m ready to embrace”, says one of the master’s students.


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