International Competition

The Story of Looking

Mark Cousins
Screening time  
05.04. / Tuesday, 17:00 - 19:00 Theatre 2 Ticket
08.04. / Friday, 17:00 - 19:00 Theatre 5 Ticket

As he prepares for surgery to restore his vision, Mark Cousins explores the role that visual experience plays in our individual and collective lives. In a deeply personal meditation on the power of looking in his own life, he guides us through the riches of the visible world, a kaleidoscope of extraordinary imagery across cultures and eras. At a time when we are more assailed by images than ever, he reveals how looking makes us who we are, lying at the heart of the human experience, empathy, discovery and thought. He shares the pleasure and pain of seeing the world, in all its complexity and contradiction, with eyes wide open.


Mark Cousins

Mark Cousins was born in 1965 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. He is a director, writer, cinematographer, critic and programmer. He has directed more than 30 documentary films, including The First Movie (2009), which won the Manfred Salzgeber Award at Berlinale, The Eyes of Orson Welles (2018), which received Golden Eye - Special Mention at Cannes Film Festival, and Women Make Film: A New Road Movie Through Cinema (2018), which secured him a European Film Award for Innovative Storytelling. His film The Story of Film: A New Generation opened Cannes Film Festival 2021. With Tilda Swinton, he co-founded the 8½ Foundation in 2009.

General sponsor

The Story of Looking

Great Britain
2021, 90'

Directed by:
Mark Cousins

Screenplay by:
Mark Cousins

Edited by:
Timo Langer

Donna McKevitt

Mary Bell, Adam Dawtrey, Mark Thomas

Produced by:
BofA Productions

Festivals & Awards:

Seville European FF: New Waves Award (2021)
Sheffield Doc (2021)
Telluride FF (2021)
Galway Film Fleadh (2021)


The Festival Agency
Fanny Gavelle