We know the Black Horses of Ars Independent 2016

We know the winners of this year’s Ars Independent! After 6 intense days of Katowice’s festival of film, animation, video games and music videos, the Black Horses have been found. This year, our festival audience was responsible for choosing the winners!

The four international competitions featured works from 2015 and 2016, competing for the title and statue of the Black Horse and a monetary prize of 500 euros. We saw: 6 feature films, 33 short animations, 6 video games and 24 music videos.

The winner of the Black Horse of Film competition is Johnny Ma for his film “Old Stone” (CHN / CAN 2016), which combines the aesthetics of Asian cinema with the American alt tradition from Sundance in its tale of a taxi driver fighting with heartless Chinese bureaucracy.


The Black Horse of Animation goes to Réka Bucsi for her animation “Love” (FRA / HUN 2016), the story of a lonely planet and the cosmogony of love, with subtly portrayed emotions and masterful usage of the form.


In the Black Horse of Video Games, the prize went to Ben Kane, Brian Fetter and Allen Pestaluky of Steel Crate Games for their game “Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes” (CAN 2015), an amazing use of the merits of virtual reality, and whose key elements are lively conversations and a race against time.


Who won the new music videos competition? The Black Horse of Music Videos is Isaac Gale, the director of Poliça’s “Wedding” (USA 2016). This subversive video about muppets standing against police violence asks still completely valid questions about the state’s monopoly for violence and the limits of human freedom.


“Ars Independent Festival 2016 has finished. Sad face. It was beautiful. We’re absolutely, positively grateful to all of you! It was a good Ars. See you again next year,” comments Bartek Sołtysik, the festival’s media spokesperson.

Ars Independent Festival 2017 will take place between 26.09 and 01.10 in Katowice.