Director of the Centre for Media Competence
Editor of the open journal "Colour Turn"
Susanne Marschall, born in 1963, is Professor of Media Studies (focus on audiovisual media, film and TV)
The Chair of Audiovisual Media, Film and TV Studies is dedicated to research and teaching in the field of fictional films and documentary films. We focus primarily on pictorial design, colour and light, animation, dramaturgy, serial storytelling, and science communication. In addition to a methodological background in historical hermeneutics, media studies, cultural studies, and vision science, the chair has a strong interest in interdisciplinary research, especially in cognitive science. This has developed through a long-standing engagement with colour and visual perception and is seen as a vital empirical approach when researching topics such as film, TV, photography, and images. A combined interest in cinematic art and painting has led to the development of a strong research focus on animation, its history and its highly fascinating stylistic diversity. The field of animation offers vast uncharted research areas, which are systematically explored in the Tübingen Centre for Animation Research (ZAF: Zentrum für Animationsforschung), founded in 2013.
The Chair of Audiovisual Media, Film and TV Studies is closely connected with the Centre for Media Competence (ZfM: Zentrum für Medienkompetenz), which is also directed by Prof. Dr. Susanne Marschall. Prof. Dr. Susanne Marschall, along with her appointment as the Professor, also assumed the direction of the ZfM. A wide range of programs are associated with the ZFM, including the Media-Ambassadors India-Germany (Robert-Bosch Stiftung), Campus TV, Radio Micro Europa, Festival TV, media library as well as web-based programs such as media-bubble.de or napse.de. The diverse film and media projects at the ZFM make it possible to systematically combine academic research and teaching with media practice (mewi-projekte). Some of the highlights of the practice-based projects include the documentary Lotte Reiniger – Tanz der Schatten (ARTE 2012, DVD absolut medien) and the two operas W – The Truth Beyond (2016) and Il Cacciatore Deluso (2017). Several exhibition projects, including SPEKTRALE (2011 Mainz) as well as Querhandeln (2014) and Menschenbilder (2015) which were developed in co-operation with the Weltethos-Institut, are examples of some other practice-based projects realised by the ZFM. Last but not least, master students regularly produce high-quality graduation films that can be watched in cinemas, on TV, or on DVD.
In addition to her university engagements, Prof. Dr. Susanne Marschall is a reviewer for various research funding organisations, jury chairman for the MFG Baden-Württemberg in the areas of distribution promotion and grants for innovative cinema and cinema prizes, and also a board member of the foundation of the Deutsche Kinemathek.
Susanne Marschall studied German studies, comparative studies, and philosophy in Cologne and Mainz. She held a scholarship from the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) from 1992 to 1995. In her monographs, papers, essays, and film reviews (Schüren, Fink, edition text+kritik, Königshausen & Neumann, Bertz + Fischer, Böhlau etc.), she covers topics such as film and TV studies, literature, theatre and cultural studies as well as visual culture. She has also appeared as a film expert in several TV and radio interviews (Filmdienst, Deutsche Welle, ARTE, SWR, HR, NDR etc.).
In 1995, Susanne Marschall obtained her doctorate with a dissertation on the theme of dance in Frank Wedekind’s Pandora’s Box and Hugo von Hofmannsthal's Elektra. Immediately after that, she worked as a research associate, as an assistant professor (C1), and finally as an academic counsellor in the department of film studies and, starting at the end of 2009, in the department for journalism at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz.
In 2003, she received the teaching award of the Senate of the Johannes Gutenberg University for her excellent performance in teaching. In 2005, she completed her post-doctoral research with her monograph „Farbe im Kino“, which has been published in its second edition. In the same year, she conceptualised and realised the exhibition „Farb-Töne“ as part of the Summer of Culture. In addition, she carried out different teaching assignments, e.g. at the Hamburg Media School, the Universities of Marburg and Vienna (summer 2011) as well as the Filmakademie Ludwigsburg. In 2010, Susanne Marschall received the calls for a W3 professorship in media studies from the Universities of Tübingen and Hamburg. With the acceptance of the call in Tübingen, she was also appointed director of the Centre for Media Competence of the University of Tübingen.
While working at the Johannes Gutenberg University in Mainz, Susanne Marschall was the spokesperson of the Interdisciplinary Media Research Group, founded the University television program CampusTV and conceptualised the university's media house. She was a founding member of the Interdisciplinary Research Group for Neuroscience (in particular as a spokeswoman for the department of Visual Culture) and in the executive committee of the Center for Intercultural Studies. Until she was appointed as a professor in Tübingen, she was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Foundation Rhineland-Palatinate for Culture.
In addition, she took part in media practice and media didactics activities; for example, in the conception of numerous school projects as well as the management of the Rhineland-Palatinate promotion of young talents for film and new media. Her commitment to PUSH projects such as the Children's University, the Science Market and most recently the City of Mainz's application for the title City of Science is aimed at opening up and spreading a network of media studies. In 2011 Susanne Marschall curated the exhibition „Spektrale“ as a lighthouse project for the City of Science.
In 2012 the alumni magazine UNICUM BERUF awarded Susanne Marschall the title „Professor of the year“. The media scholar was honoured in the category „Humanities, Social Sciences and Cultural Studies“. Nationwide, almost 800 university teachers had been nominated for the title by students, colleagues and employers. A jury chaired by Professor Klaus Landfried, the former president of the German Rectors’ Conference, elected the award winners in four academic fields. Susanne Marschall won the competition because of her intensive mentoring of young scholars in career planning, the development and realisation of ambitious practice projects, placements in internships and entry-level positions as well as the advancement of start-ups.