Conference, New European Bauhaus

In the framework on the New European Bauhaus.


The creation of stories entails fundamental stakes: artistic, of course, but also anthropological, social, political and prospective. The function of stories is to bring communities together through visions, emotions or imaginary shared constructions.

Today, films, series and – globally – the entire body of stories propelled by moving images, have become the engine creating the representations and projections of our societies. For better, yet sometimes for worst.

For the last twenty-or-so years, the degradation and the worldwide, massive exportation of a certain type of Hollywoodian creations particularly appreciated by the young generations – films made for the box-office that enhance arms, brutality, violence and super heroes – are problematic for the entire planet. Almost as if we were facing a sort of chronic failure of our capacity to dream together, to open other horizons, other models for the new generations.

That being said, the strength of Europe lies in its own particular features, which are far-too-quickly considered as banal: multiculturalism, secularism, the singularity of real-life individual experiences, the integration of social criticism in individual stories. In Europe since the Enlightenment, the fabrication of storytelling combines a variety of motives, a wealth of nuances and a power of questioning.

Thus, it seems to us that the revival of “making a story”, taking in consideration a constructive and open vision on new ways and perspectives, becomes a fundamental lever in the manufacture of meaning, and at the same time a humanist tool in a world that is losing its sense of direction. The stake in the making of these stories that can heighten the awareness of non-violence, and the need for contemporary stories that trace all possible diagonals and collective representations that they federate, thus becomes crucial.

Fiction-storytelling is not just entertainment, but fundamentally a pillar of how humans build their worldview or shape the way they interact with each other…

On May, 28th, StoryTANK organised a conference
« Fictional narrative & the Meaning factory »
gathering European screenwriters & researchers

This conference was organised in the framework of the New European Bauhaus, an initiative by the European Commission


16.00 – 16.30 PM
Introductory conference by Antoine Le Bos, Screenwriter, Founder & Artistic director of Le Groupe Ouest

16.30 – 17.30 PM
Round-table with European Researchers & Story development specialists*

17.30 – 18.00 PM

* Speakers | Researchers & Story development specialists

Tomas Axelson

Tomas AxelsonUppsala University 2008, Doctor of Theology defending his thesis, Movies and Meaning. Studying the Audience, Favourite Films and Existential Matters. Associate Professor in sociology of religion at Uppsala University 2015.
My field of expertise is vernacular meaning making and the construction of world views in everyday life in the crossroad of media and religion, with a special interest in fiction film and religion and how main-stream viewers comprehend and use movies as a resource in life. My theoretical interest has been to develop a more nuanced understanding of these processes with the help of advanced concepts dealing with reception; ‘thick viewing’.

Samira Bourgeois-Bougrine

Samira Bourgeois-BougrineSamira Bourgeois-Bougrine earned her PhD in ergonomics and human factor engineering. Her initial research focused on human-machine interactions, ergonomic analyses of behaviour and best practices in the aviation agency in terms of pilots and air traffic controllers. Samira Bourgeois-Bougrine went on to focus her research on analyses of best practices in the creative process of engineers and writers, based on in-depth analyses of responses to interviews and activity traces.

Ralf Schmälzle

Ralf SchmälzleRalf Schmälzle, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at Michigan State University. He is uniquely cross-trained in communication, health psychology and the cognitive neurosciences. He received his doctorate from the University of Konstanz, Germany, where he also held a postdoctoral position.
Ralf Schmälzle’s research strives to provide a mechanistic understanding of how messages affect the brain and how the brain – the biological organ of communication – enables us to respond to and interact with a uniquely social world. With this overarching goal in mind, his work promotes theoretical and methodological integration between communication science and neuroscience. He currently advances this goal within two areas: Neuroimaging of Health Prevention Messages and Cognitive/Media Neuroscience.

Vinca Wiedemann

Vinca WiedemannVinca Wiedemann graduated as a film editor from National Film School of Denmark but she soon moved into script development. As film commissioner at the Danish Film Institute, she was responsible for granting development and production support to numerous feature films and was instrumental in the rise of Danish cinema. Vinca is an internationally esteemed script consultant and story supervisor for directors, e.g. Lars von Trier collaborated closely with her on his scripts for MELANCHOLIA and NYMPHOMANIAC. She was Director of The National Film School of Denmark for five years, serves internationally as member of think tanks, film juries, keynote speaker and as a lecturer on artistic collaboration and issues linked to innovation, film education and film policy.