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Reinventing Porn: Erika’s Ethics

13.02.2019 - Erika Lust, moderated by Maike Mia Höhne

How and why did Erika pick up a camera? Sex-positive director Erika Lust (XConfessions) analyses the androcentric space of porn and mass media and its representation of sex, sexuality and women built by the male gaze and its ideals. For her, change occurs in the production process, meaning that what happens in front of the camera has everything to do with the people behind it. In the company of Berlinale Shorts Curator Maike Mia Höhne, she discusses how this principle affects everything from the storyline, to the way pleasure, gender roles and agency are represented and how collaborators work on set. Yet Erika’s production ethics are by no means restricted to the domain of porn and she sets out to ask questions about the place of social responsibility in the wider medium of filmmaking.


Erika Lust

photo of Erika Lust
Erika Lust is an acclaimed indie adult filmmaker. In 2015, she gave a TEDx talk called “It’s Time for Porn to Change.” Her XConfessions project is the world’s first crowd-sourced erotic film series. Every month, she picks two anonymous fantasies shared on XConfessions.com and turns them into explicit shorts. With more than 150 short films, she also produces and finances female guest directors from across the globe and believes in having women in all key positions behind the camera.

Moderated by

Maike Mia Höhne

photo of Maike Mia Höhne

A filmmaker and curator, Maike Mia Höhne has been the curator and head of Berlinale Shorts since 2007. She works as a curator and jury member for several institutions and festivals around the world and is involved in film funding on a regional and national level. She also teaches film at the University of Applied Sciences Europe in Hamburg. As of March 2019, she will take over as artistic director of the Hamburg International Short Film Festival.