The country focus for the 30th edition of exground filmfest is dedicated to Turkey and its film scene, with all its quirkiness and black-humour, while also making space for the quiet and contemplative. The program features works that illuminate how identity is formed and make the case that culture cannot be reduced to national boundaries. The stories often serve as political or social parables and hint at wider implications beyond their own bounds. In these films, individuals struggle for sexual self-determination and against oppression at the hands of society, family or the state. They shed light on past and present conflicts, in documentary, essayistic, experimental and fiction formats, as past events frequently exercise a deep influence on the developments of the present. We will attempt to tackle the complex political changes occurring in the country in the scope of an informational event on the topic of freedom of speech in Turkey presented by amnesty international as well as a panel discussion with filmmakers and festival organizers. We want to make the myriad forms of direct, subtle and subversive political expression present in contemporary Turkish cinema palpable with the works presented in this section. To this end, in addition to the longer fiction and documentary films, we have once again assembled a diverse short film program. The points of access to the country focus are meant to loosen the constricting corset of a national cinematography, and the works, many of them realised as international co-productions, are intended to invite viewers to openly investigate the fluid nature of concepts like nationality, culture, gender and memory. We look forward to welcoming guests to the section from Turkey, the USA, Great Britain, The Netherlands, Switzerland, Iran and Germany, and to discovering particularities and lines of connection, honouring the full range of cinematic conceptions and adopting different perspectives.