Video Loops at Central Library

Experimental Cinema at Central Library returns in 2017 with an all-day interactive event on Saturday, Sept. 30. Central Library and Cinema St. Louis invite St. Louis-area filmmakers to create short, silent works of video art that bear repeating.

This juried competition will award cash prizes – $250 for first place, $150 for second place, and $100 for third place – to the top three entries. The winning shorts will then be featured as part of a looped program that will screen on Central Library’s Discovery Walls (four large-screen monitors throughout the building) and at a screening in Central's Auditorium on Saturday, Sept. 30. In addition to the three cash-prize winners, up to seven other works will be chosen to be part of the program. These 10 works will also be featured on a DVD for checkout at Saint Louis Public Library.

Qualifying entries will be no less than (:01) second and no more than (:60) seconds long. All entries, regardless of original running time, will be looped to run for a total of (3:00) minutes for the final program.

A three-person jury of film professionals (filmmakers, film scholars, film critics) will select the video-loop program, including both the three cash-prize winners and the additional films. Jury members will be announced on CSL's website.

Cinema St. Louis will also screen the video-loop program as part of the St. Louis Filmmakers Showcase, held in July 2018. Those films will then be eligible for consideration by the St. Louis International Film Festival, held in November 2018.

The cash-prize winners and additional works in the video-loop program will be announced on Saturday, Sept. 23, 2017.

Contest Details



St. Louis-area filmmakers interested in participating must submit shorts that meet the following criteria:

-Must not include sound.
-A title should be included with each entry. However, the submitted video should be free of titles or credits.
-Run a maximum of (:60) seconds and a minimum of (:01) second.
-Contain no offensive imagery; if CSL and Central Library deem a work inappropriate for viewing by audiences of all ages, it will be eliminated from consideration.

Filmmakers are encouraged to create experimental, non-narrative works. The shorts can be shot in any film or video format, in either color or black-and-white. In addition, the following conditions apply:

-Filmmakers must have secured rights to any images used in the work.
-Filmmakers will retain ownership rights to submitted works, but by submitting a short to the competition, a filmmaker grants Central Library the right to screen the work in perpetuity on Central’s Discovery Walls and at a one-time screening in Central’s Auditorium. In addition, by submitting a short to the competition, a filmmaker grants Central Library the right to include the work on a DVD that will be owned by the library and available for patrons to check out. Submission of a short does not guarantee its use.
-Filmmakers must live within a 120-mile radius of St. Louis.
-Any film that contains strobing/flickering images that may be considered unsafe for those who suffer from photosensitive epilepsy will be omitted from screening on Discovery Walls or in open areas of the library.

All films must be submitted using the online form with a Vimeo link. No entry fee is required. Submission deadline is Aug. 12, 2017.