2022 Current film project

THE FOOL ON THE HILL  (Narrenbühl)

Documentary, 86 min

To what extent does a creative family heritage become a burden – and at the same time helps one to survive?
The documentary revolves around intimate insights into “The Fool’s Journey" of the Swiss artist Jürg Ernst, himself under the influence of his father, the surrealist painter Hans Ulrich Ernst. And it shows the progress of the daughter and filmmaker Miriam Ernst in search of her authentic voice.
In essayistic snapshots Miriam Ernst accompanies her father for eight years in the construction of the bizarre sculpture park "Gnomengarten", which became known throughout Switzerland as a concrete cabaret. After several bad health problems, Jürg Ernst decides to give up his life’s dream and closes the gate of his garden forever. This decision culminates in a big happening where the largest sculpture Pluto, the meter-high king of the garden, is destroyed by a digger.
This three-generation story continuously weaves between the real and surreal, providing a poetic reflection on the Artist’s Life, and the values and compromises such a creative existence requires.


Release date: Spring 2022


Documentary, 90 Min

Stromboli – a small cosmos in the shadow of an active volcano. A poetic documentary about island stories, told by the inhabitants in four seasons.

A love story between the islanders and their volcano: a cross-generational fascination between threat and attraction – a symbiosis between the forces of nature and a population faced with drastic changes to it’s living conditions.


Release date: 2023



Documentary, 40 min

„La Locanda dei Girasoli“ (The Sunflower Inn) in Rome serves great food. But there is one difference from other Roman pizzerias: most of the staff have Down's Syndrome. 

This 40-minute film observes a special corner of the Italian capital where ordinary human beings achieve the extraordinary. We witness a life-giving experiment in integration – moving, funny and somehow heroic. We enter into the interior worlds of the characters to share their joys, sorrows and dreams for the future; dreams that sooner or later will be confronted with the realities of the outside world.


  • Official Selection Otherfield Documentary Film Festival 2016 UK
  • Nomination Best Student Documentary Film, Grierson Award 2016
  • Official Selection/Best of the Fest AmDoc Festival 2017,                    Palm Springs USA
  • Nomination Best Student Film Factual, Winner for Best Editing               Royal Television Society Awards 2017, London UK 

DVD available

Miriam Ernst,



Documentary, 33 min

In the Western world the process of healing is often reduced to dosing patients with drugs and rationalising a course of treatment.

This 30-minute film takes a holistic approach, exploring some of the factors which contribute to the healing process, including the power of self-regulation and belief. 

Miriam Ernst - Roads to Healing



Short film, 7 min. A film by Miriam Ernst and Andi Hofmann

You stand with both feet firmly planted on the ladder of success, nothing can alter your daily routine. But suddenly and annoyingly, a neighbour forces you to see yourself, and the nightmare unfolds....

This experimental short film about a successful businessman and his odd neighbour uses black humor to highlight themes recurring in our everyday life and in the workplace. How does the "self-optimized" man navigate the continuum between the demands of career and the experience of mental boundaries?

This quirky film re-interprets the 1993 song of the Bernese songwriter Daenu Brueggemann and outlines a surreal story in the conflicting interaction between reality and illusion, between self-perception and perception of others.


  • Nomination Bernese Film Award Festival 2014
  • Nomination Swiss Made, Shnit Shortfilmfestival 2014.
    Jury-Statement (PDF)

DVD available

This DVD is part of the limited art edition with artwork, CD and DVD by Daenu Brueggemann, Pesche Aeschbacher, Miriam Ernst and Andi Hofmann.



Documentary, 46 min

The „Alpabzug“ from the Bire Alp is one of the most impressive and diverse in the area. At the end of the summer on the Alp, and with the commitment and support of many experienced helpers, 90 animals are led 36 kilometers in one day from the foot of the Gantrisch mountains over Schwarzenburg to the village of Albligen.

The documentary of the 2011 Alpabzug, supplemented with flashbacks from the Mäder alp hut along with specially composed music, is a particularly athmospheric film about a special tradition.


As a child, waiting on the Milkenstrasse in Schwarzenburg, I experienced the „Alpabzug“ from the Bire. I was happy when I was in the right place at the right time, and I was moved by the ancient power of roving herds and the magic of those fleeting moments. With this film I would like to bring the public closer to the small, and at times large, world of an „Alpabzug“ – a tradition which touches our technical, everyday world with its authenticity.

Miriam Ernst


Miriam Ernst - Vom Bärg i ds Tal

DVD available