Austrian director Nicola Von Leffern talks film, travel and self-care in our exclusive video
neubau eyewear got the low down on Nicola’s favorite spots in Vienna and the creatives that inspire her.
Across a large and diverse body of work, Nicola von Leffern; filmmaker, director, photographer and traveller, asks, “are we dreaming?”. Experimenting with light and texture, von Lefferns films capture the eerie melancholy that engulf our minds at night, weaving in reflections on feminism, sexuality and personal freedom, her work offers an often unseen insight into the female psyche.
Though she may spend much of her time working in the more cosmopolitan corners of the globe, making music videos and directing her own short films, she still manages to find time to put her wanderlust to reality.
When not fleshing out her next project, von Leffern is on the road, with the wind in her hair and a much more carefree attitude at bay. Riding side by side with partner and fellow director, Jakob Carl Sauer, the pair have taken on the endless twists and turns of Europe's southern roads, all on board their beloved VW, @bitchythebus.
In an attempt to connect her personal endeavors with her cinematic intentions, Nicola has used her travels to open up a dialogue about self care in the creative industries. Using her online platforms, von Leffern offers up advice to fellow creatives looking to take a step back from the hustle & bustle that comes with freelance work in the creative industries. As the pair have explained on their @bitchythebus account, travel is a chance to “breathe, love and break everything down to a road, the sea, [or] a good book’.
Empowered by her message, neubau eyewear sought the chance to speak to this daydreamer and creative powerhouse. Despite currently being road-bound in Croatia, Nicola found the time to provide us with an insight into her personal world, presented in our exclusive video collaboration, opening up about those who inspire her in and around our favourite district in Vienna, our namesake, Neubau district.
In terms of design, Nicola recommends unisex label and designer Romana Zöchling, aka @ferrarizoechling, on Kirchengasse, who “despite the name Ferrari has nothing to do with the car manufacturer, but everything with bold, brave and unisex clothing. I love her style personally and try to incorporate her pieces into my wardrobe, but also I love working with her. Whenever I need great outfits for my film shoots, I run to her and we work something out. We started collaborating roughly five years ago and I am curious as to what her and my future brings.”
For a modern take on Vienna’s coffee house tradition, Nicola recommends, Wolfgang Coffee on Zieglergasse:
“Wolfgang's calm and modern looking coffee corner is a bit hidden in the stylish concept store QWSTION on Westbahnstraße. But both are absolutely worth the visit. I fell in love with Wolfgang's coffee when I used to have my office next door. I never bought a coffee machine, because I knew it would never taste as good. So this became my daily stop for an oat milk cappuccino and a vegan treat from his baked goods.”
Looking for a soothing drink to ease out of the day? R&BAR on Lindengasse is the place:
“Most people know this place for the bar on the ground floor of the building, the R&BAR. And I understand why, the food and drinks are fantastic. But I actually care more for the 3 floors above. Since I am a filmmaker it's always crucial to find production houses with whom I can collaborate well. Das Rund and all the subsidiaries have a very modern approach. They care about green producing, about gender equality, they have female bosses and an eye for art. They do a lot of things well and therefore I enjoy spending some working hours on the top floors and some leisure hours on the ground floor of Lindengasse 1.”
Another one of her stomping grounds (the natural habitat of a filmmaker) is the Film Casino on Spittelberggasse:
“As a filmmaker it may not come as a surprise that I absolutely love movies. I try to go to the cinema at least once a week. Especially because good art house films often don't have long running times in Austria. One of the cinemas I love best in Vienna is the Filmcasino and I am very happy that they now have a second branch as Filmhaus Kino am Spittelberg.”
For more Vienna insider recommendations check out our Neubau District Guide by Anna Laura Kummer: