100-day film festival
Artists’ Cinema is a project that will bring the most interesting video art from around the world to Kochi. The project will be curated by eminent personalities from the world of cinema and art. The programme for each week is to be curated by a different person, allowing a diversity of styles and visions to come together. The curators will be selected by an advisory board that includes Amar Kanwar, Ashish Rajadhyaksha, Amrit Gangar, Bina Paul Venugopal and CS Venkiteswaran.
The screenings will take place in the evenings from 6:30 to 8:30 at a specially designed screening space within the Pavillion at Aspinwall House, Fort Kochi. Artists’ Cinema will run for the 100 days during the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014.
Born in 1964. Lives and works in New Delhi.
Recent solo exhibitions in 2013-14 have been at the Art Institute of Chicago, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary, Vienna and the Fotomuseum Winterthur, Zurich 2012.
Recent group exhibitions in 2013-14 have been at the 56th Carnegie International, USA; 13th Istanbul Biennial; 5th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art; Sharjah Biennale 11; 1st Kochi Biennale , India; Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, South Korea; Kemper Art Museum, St. Louis, USA; Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi, India; Tarra Warra Museum of Art, Victoria, Australia; Bristol Museum, UK and the Guggenheim Museum, New York. Kanwar has also participated in Documenta 11, 12 and 13 in Kassel, Germany. (2002, 2007, 2012).
Kanwar has received numerous awards including the Annenberg Prize for Art and Social Change (2014), the Edvard Munch Award for Contemporary Art, Norway; Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts from Maine College of Art; Golden Gate Award, San Francisco International Film Festival; Golden Conch, Mumbai International Film Festival.
Director: Garin Nugroho
Indonesia / 120 mins / 2006
An experimental opera film where entire scenes are shot with dance and songs without any dialogue. All music and lyrics were composed specially for the film based on gamelan music and Javanese songs in the Javanese language. Apart from the music, the film is also a collaboration with painters, sculptors, and artists who create art installations and statues for background set pieces. Meanwhile, the dancers are the leading performers in the film. Siti, Setio, and Ludiro are dancers who act out the Rama-Sinta love story from the Ramayana, set in modern times. Setio and Siti’s pottery business is shaken when the demand subsides. At the same time, Sudiro, a wealthy businessman who has desired Siti for a long time, seduces her. Ludiro uses every way possible, including violence, to get Siti, while Setio is away. Violence becomes the main undercurrent of the film although it is portrayed symbolically, to also express the violence of globalization.
The Wanted 18
Director: Amer Shomali, Paul Cowan
Canada / Palestine / France – 2014 – Arabic / English / Hebrew – 75 minutes
It’s 1987, and the first Palestinian popular movement in the West Bank is rising. Residents want local alternatives to Israeli goods, including milk, which they’ve been buying from an Israeli company.
And so begins the strange story of the 18 cows.
Encirclement: Neo Liberalism Ensnares Democracy
Director: Richard Brouillette
Canada (shot in 16mm), B&W, 2008, 160 minutes
With: Noam Chomsky, Ignacio Ramonet, Normand Baillargeon, Susan George, Omar Aktouf, Oncle Bernard, Michel Chossudovsky, François Denord, François Brune, Martin Masse, Jean-Luc Migué, Filip Palda and Donald J. Boudreaux
Drawing upon the thinking and analyses of renowned intellectuals, this documentary sketches a portrait of neo-liberal ideology and examines the various mechanisms used to impose its dictates throughout the world. Neo-liberalism’s one-size-fits-all dogmas are well known: deregulation, reducing the role of the State, privatization, limiting inflation rather than unemployment, etc. In other words, depoliticizing the economy and putting it into the hands of the financial class. And these dogmas are gradually settling into our consciousness because they’re being broadcast across a vast and pervasive network of propaganda.
Director: Abderrahmane Sissako
2006/118 mnts / France/Mali
Melé is a bar singer, her husband Chaka is out of work and the couple is on the verge of breaking up… In the courtyard of the house they share with other families, a trial court has been set up. African civil society spokesmen have taken proceedings against the World Bank and the IMF whom they blame for Africa’s woes… Amidst the pleas and the testimonies, life goes on in the courtyard. Chaka does not seem to be concerned by this novel Africa’s desire to fight for its rights.
Sengadal the Dead Sea
Director: Leena Manimekalai
Synopsis: On the Indian mainland, across the waters, arrive the Tamil refugees from Sri Lanka, an unending stream of people dispossessed of their lands and Gods, to an uncertain future with ever receding hopes of return. Dhanushkodi, the Indo-Sri Lankan border town, is the crucible wherein History is brewing this concoction of defeated lives and exhausted dreams. Hope is a big word and resistance but a tired expression. Three decades of struggle for a nation is washed out, a race obliterated.
For, there is no one fighting their war back home now. Heroic images have turned to dust. The bunkers run with the wasted blood. Smoke rises from heaps of putrid flesh. Unwanted lives rot away in barbed wire human zoos.
The misery spills over to the Indian shore. Fishermen fishing in fear in ignorance of friendly and enemy waters get dumped as rebels, spies and smugglers and unceremoniously beaten to death or shot or maimed. Yet, each morning sees their boats launched once again to the sea as the sea is their motherland and the language of fish their mother tongue.
Manimekalai, the filmmaker, Munusamy, the fisherman, Rosemary, the social worker in Jesuit Christian Refugee Services, try hard to retain their sanity in this mad jumble. Their interactions with the dead or living refugees, their skirmishes with the Indian and Sri Lankan States, their personal lives overrun by external events – form the kernel of this narration. Soori, a half-wit Sri Lankan Tamil, who connects to the world through his radio, stands aloof in this bleak world of despair sending lightning jolts of truth into the dark recesses of History. No wonder, he vanishes into the blue and Manimekalai is forced by the State to return to the world of civil obedience. Munusamy is killed and Rosemary turns to her God, the same God who parted the Red Sea to save his flock in their flight from annihilation.
- Official Selection, International Competition, 32nd Durban International Film Festival, August 2011
- Official Selection, First Film Competition, 35th World Montreal Film Fetsival, September 2011
- Official Selection, International Competition, Mumbai Film Fest, MAMI, October 2011
- NAWFF Award(Best Asian Woman Film award), Tokyo International Film Festival, November 2011
- Indian Panorama, Indian International Film Festival, Goa, December 2011
- World Cinema Official Selection, International Film Festival of Kerala, 2011
- Chithrabarathi Competition, Bangalore International Film Festival, 2011
- Pecheurs De Monde International Film Festival, Lorient, France, 2013
- Rare Picks at Hundred years of Indian Cinema Package, 2013
Malayalam (with English subtitles) | 9 minutes
Director: Hari M Mohanan
Synopsis: “Invisible Wings” is a short documentary about a tea seller named Vijayan, who accomplished his desire to travel the world in spite of all the obstacles life has thrown upon him. His story speaks volumes about Inspiration, Motivation and Persistence. Vijayan fulfils his aspirations with his Invisible Wings of Desire. A story that puts spotlight on an individual’s will power and persistence can touch every heart and soul.
Madhusree Dutta is a filmmaker and curator living in Mumbai. Her films have been screened widely in film festivals and art events, and are taught in the courses on urban study, film study, cultural studies, women’s studies and sociology. She has curated several art and cultural initiatives, and conceptualized multiple archive projects. Her latest curatorial project Cinema City: Research Art and Documentary Practices(2009-2014) is a multi-disciplinary initiative to read, produce, archive and recycle the numerous configurations between the city and the cinema it produces. She has authored dates.sites: Bombay / Mumbai, a graphic timeline of the public cultures in the 20th century (designed by Shilpa Gupta). The anthology Project Cinema City, (eds. Madhusree Dutta, Kaushik Bhaumik and Rohan Shivkumar, designed by Sherna Dastur) is adjudged the Best Printed Book 2014, by Publishing Next.
Natasha Ginwala is an independent curator, researcher, and writer. She is curatorial advisor and Public Programmes curator for the Gujral Foundation’s India-Pakistan project at the 56th Venice Biennale (2015), and was a member of the artistic team at the 8th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art (2014). Her recent work also includes the multi-part curatorial project Landings (with Vivian Ziherl) presented at Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, David Roberts Art Foundation, NGBK (as part of the Tagore, Pedagogy and Contemporary Visual Cultures Network), Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, and other partner organizations, 2013–ongoing, as well as The Museum of Rhythm at Taipei Biennial 2012 (with Anselm Franke). Ginwala has contributed to several publications including Afterall Online, art-agenda, C Magazine, e-flux journal, Pages Magazine and Scapegoat Journal.
Born in Kerala to a music enthusiast mother and footballer father, Faizal Khan is a journalist based in Delhi. After covering assembly to parliament and RSS to Left parties in a full-time career spanning over a decade, he now acquaints with places like Alappuzha and the Arctic and attends film festivals in Goa, Mumbai, Cannes and Toronto to make a living as a freelancer. When he is not travelling and watching movies, he walks and bikes to write for an online journal on non-motorised transport. He also tells stories of football sometimes from World Cup venues.
Manoj Nair is a writer, critic and curator. He is the author of Pencil Sketches: a volume of writing on Indian visual arts, cinema, literature and music based on his experience as an editor and correspondent with leading Indian newspapers and magazines. Currently, he is working on a book on the history of Indian independent rock music and its contribution to Indian popular music.
Bandhu Prasad Aleyamma
Bandhu Prasad Aleyamma is an independent arts manager, performing arts programmer and filmmakers’ liaison working with major film/theatre/arts festivals in Kerala and other parts of the country. He works with theatre makers in developing new play productions, new adaptations and interpretations since 1999. In 2011, along with his long-term colleagues, he co-founded Trivi Art Concerns, a group that focuses on arts management, art in education and theatre productions. During his seven-year-long stint with the International Film Festival of Kerala (IFFK) and International Documentary & Short Film Festival of Kerala (IDSFFK), he was mentored by Bina Paul Venugopal. He has also worked as a consultant for Berlin International Film Festival and Dubai International Film Festival in selecting new Malayalam films. Recently he has associated with renowned Canadian director Sturla Gunnarsson for his latest documentary feature ‘Monsoon’ and worked for National Geographic Channel’s new series ‘Incredibly Small World’. He was awarded the ARThink SouthAsia Arts Management Fellowship in 2014-2015 and has been part of the Kochi Biennale Foundation since 2012. His curatorial premises include performing arts and political and cultural history.