Two calls for submissions: Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival and Art Visuals & Poetry Festival

A new poetry film festival is slated for Worcester, Massachusetts, USA: the Rabbit Heart Poetry Film Festival, sponsored by Doublebunny Press. The screening is in September, submissions are open until June 1, and — unusually for a poetry film festival — there’s a $25 submissions fee, and six winners will get cash prizes: “Best Overall Picture will win $200, and there will be $100 prizes in categories for Best Animation, Best Music in a Video, Phone Shot, Under 1 Minute, and Valentine.”

Two other unique features of this contest and festival: they want only what I would call videopoetry or filmpoetry — no footage of the poet herself reading her work, and they’re looking for author-made films, requiring the poet to be “directly involved in the process of making the video.” Also, judging is blind, so the film can’t contain any credits. All in all, this is definitely one of the most unique poetry film festival call-outs I’ve seen. Check it out.


Another poetry film festival is scheduled for November in Vienna, Austria. The Art Visuals & Poetry Festival has been going on for several years now, and its website is a good source for information on various film festivals and poetry film-related activities, especially for those who read German. The 2014 festival includes an international competition using a recording of a poem by Georg Trakl as well as a competition for Austrian filmmakers. The deadline is September 30.

The Austria-specific contest is for what they call a textfilm. In contrast to the Rabbit Heart folks, they cast a pretty wide net:

Whether abstract, classic, animation, narrative or cinematographic : the genre of poetry film is colorful and varied. There are also many definitions. The Scottish photographer and filmmaker Alistair Cook defined the poetry film recently with the following words: “A poetry film is… a single entwined entity, a melting, a cleaving together of words, sound and vision. It is an attempt to take a poem and present it through a medium that will create a new artwork, separate from the original poem.” In contrast to the Anglo-American world, we accept all kinds of literary art works, that meet the predicate literary. It can be abstract sound poem or poetic prose or naughty poetry slam. Therefore we sometimes use the word “textfilm” as a synonym for the word “poetry film”.

Anyway, do read their call for entries.


Don’t forget that the main Moving Poems links page includes, as its last category, a nearly complete list of international poetry film festivals. For recent festival news and call-outs, browse the “festivals and other screening events” topic here at the forum.

Dave Bonta

Dave is the founder of Moving Poems, and posts videos for his own poems (along with lots of other stuff) at Via Negativa. Here's a bio.