First Edition

Face to Face

The ‘face’ is the place of humanity; and it is the interface with others. The notion of face sits at the convergence of many fundamental and timely themes: the re- appropriation of our faces after a period where our faces were covered by masks, the discovery of the Other in times of raising populism, the challenges of biopolitics in a society where control is getting more stringent.

Furthermore, Face to Face describes the specific event of being confronted with the Otherness. Being Face to Face offers the opportunity to come to term with the world around us and to challenge our relationship with history, with technology, with nature. Jean-Luc Godard said: “Un paysage, c’est comme un visage” and, in this respect, it is illuminating to explore the relationship between face and the landscape especially in a unique geographic context such as St. Moritz in the Swiss Engadin Valley.

The Jury

The 2022 Edition Jury is composed of:

  • Leonardo Bigazzi
  • Sophie Fiennes
  • Alexandra Gordienko
  • Ara Merjian
  • Anthony McCarten
  • Davide Quadrio

The coordinator of the Jury is Ewa Hess.


The first edition of the St. Moritz Art Film Festival closed Sunday, 28 August 2022 and was a resounding success having screened 38 films, 15 of them were in competition.

The SMAFF is proud to announce the winners and recipients of the awards:

  • The Love at First Sight Award was won by the Italian artist Diego Marcon, 37, with The Parents’ Room (2021)
  • The Best Film by an Artist Award was won by the Albanian artist Adrian Paci, 53, with La Prova (2019)
  • The Best Arthouse Film Award was won by the German filmmaker Roman Hüben with Douglas Sirk: Hope As in Despair (2022)

The awards consist of an artwork by renowned Swiss artist Not Vital. Its form is inspired by Engadine’s nature. The object is called Buatscha, which means in the local idiom ‘cow patty’. It symbolises Engadine’s exceptional connection to its landscape and also its own, sometimes stubborn, character. It also stands for artistic freedom, for independence of thought, for the uniqueness of the St. Moritz Art Film Festival.

The 2022 Edition Jury was composed of: curator Leonardo Bigazzi (Fondazione In Between Art Film), film director and producer Sophie Fiennes, photographer and editor Alexandra Gordienko, professor of Italian Studies Ara Merjian, screenwriter Anthony McCarten and Davide Quadrio, director of the Museo d’Arte Orientale in Turin.

Quotes out of the Laudatio by the Jury for the festival winners:

“For the courage to touch the darkest side of human nature with a delicate sensitivity” (about Diego Marcon, The Parent’s Room)

“The dignity of the men’s faces in Adrian Paci’s film recalls the past of Neorealist cinema and speaks to the present” (about Adrian Paci, La Prova)

“A mix of tenderness and abjection, triumph and mourning, the film leaves on the tongue a taste decidedly sweet and bitter.” (about Roman Hüben, “Douglas Sirk: Hope as in Despair”)

“The first edition of St. Moritz Art Film Festival was a great success. We are thrilled about the reception of the films by the general public as well as by art and film critics. The winning videos, The Parents’ Room by Diego Marcon, La Prova by Adrian Paci and Douglas Sirk: Hope as in Despair by Roman Hüben contributed to enrich the notion of human face in line with the yearly theme of the Festival: ‘Face to Face’. We were aware of the challenging nature of the programme but spectators and jurors appreciated the bold curatorial direction of the first edition. This encourages us to grow even more in this direction for the following years. The theme of the second year of the Festival will be ‘Becoming Landscape”.

— Stefano Rabolli Pansera,
Director of St Moritz Art Film Festival

Film list