For the third year in a row, Esra Rotthoff created the artwork, once again creating a new visual world for the JFBB with a familiar, consistent line and a clear goal: to show Jewish life and culture in a contemporary, artistic and aesthetically novel way. The familiar and the different merge into something unprecedented.
In this festival year - in this novel time - photos and a festival trailer were created that reflect the omnipresent situation worldwide as well as Rotthoff's personal view as an artist. "After a period of never-ending walks, you just feel like an explosion of colour," says Rotthoff. This explains the pomegranate whose juice splashes in the motifs, the honey that flows over everything imaginable and the staged ritual that transforms the isolation and gives it an almost fairytale-like celebratory glow. The Jewish New Year Rosh ha-Shanah served as the basis for the conceptual design. Wine, a yeast plait, the menorah - the table is richly laid, but this time not only is the apple dipped in honey, according to the usual custom, but the protagonist herself is doused with honey, thus metaphorically ushering in a life that will hopefully finally become sweeter again.
This was dared - according to Rotthoff's vision - by the actress and scholarship holder Elina Schkolnik, who, when she bites into the apple, does not wrap herself in sleep like Snow White, but undergoes this very transformation. The viewer of the photos and the trailer should also be enchanted by this very ritual. An old custom is thereby exaggerated by the art of staging. The blue hands, which are a reference to the plastic gloves that have become an everyday object, powerfully swing the menorah. Incidentally, this concept was incorporated into a song especially for the festival trailer: "Sweeter Than Honey", sung by the artist Elle ID and realised together with the Israeli-born, London-based producer duo Soho Sonic. This even translates the JFBB concept into music.
Incidentally, the claim SWEET 'N' JEWCY came from the festival management as a reaction to this year's visual world. And so a world comes together that is not only intended to promote the festival, but also to provide a framework for the diverse life worlds of the films and to appeal to the audience: with a desire for more colour, Jewish culture and above all, finally, great cinema on big screens again!
Esra Rotthoff's artistic view is a holistic one; her method, the staging of the moment, is the bringing together of the most diverse elements. In pre-planned scenery, what is felt becomes real and thus Rotthoff's planned narrative is captured with the camera. In the process, she develops artistic appearances for large cultural institutions such as the Gorki Theatre and the Dresden State Operetta, gives lectures internationally, teaches and exhibits her free works in galleries and at trade fairs.