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Run Time

27 mins

The main engine propelling the film is the art academy’s new building, promised to students as purpose-built but clearly designed without functionality truly in mind. When faced with obstacles (doors won’t stay open without huge bricks), annoyances (their new building is constructed without communal kitchen space) or things even more nefarious (their movements can be tracked through their electronic key cards), the community of students and staff decide to self-organise by creating their own policies, courses and ways of existing within the hostile architectural environment. And so, in secret, they build a mobile kitchen unit hidden within movable exhibition walls, invite the public to participate in low-key workshops, and vote the building’s cleaner as the art school’s rector.

Manifesto brilliantly details the systemic dysfunction that accompanies work or study within educational environments in which administrative policies outrank educational imperatives. An inevitable pang of recognition will arise in any viewer who has studied at, taught in, worked for or otherwise interacted with any higher education institution over the last two decades. One interviewee concludes, “the only possible relationship to academia today is a criminal one.”

Beyond elucidating the often intangible failures and dissatisfaction in contemporary university arts education, Guttu’s most remarkable contribution with Manifesto is yet another deft construction that comments on reality through character design, scripted dialogue and worldbuilding. Even shrewd viewers could be excused for mistaking the film as a documentary, as its factual content is so persuasive and compelling. The film arises yet again from Guttu’s research-based practice which includes field studies, workshops and casting actors in roles that mirror their actual professions and sensibilities. —Herb Shellenberger



Manifesto establishes a multifaceted portrait of an arts academy which has been recently subsumed into a large national university. Through frank and revealing discussions with students, teachers, administrators and other staff, Ane Hjort Guttu establishes links between seemingly disparate topics—from architecture and surveillance to neoliberalism and dysfunctionality—embedded within the framework of contemporary academia.






Dialogue Languages

Danish English Norwegian

Subtitle Language

Primary Contact

Ane Hjort Guttu


27 mins


Ane Hjort Guttu Maiken Håvarstein Fatou Madeleine Åsbakk Bjørnar Sira Terje Nicolaisen Yamile Calderon Janny Hoff Brekke

Director of photography

Patrik Säfström


Jon Endre Mørk

Music composer

Mari Kvien Brunvoll

Sound design

Øyvind Rydland, Rune Baggerud