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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition

Rotterdam Film Festival - Painting With History

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Rotterdam Film Festival - Painting With History

With the support of: 

 
Curatorial presentation by Ioana Florescu and Adina Marin
Taking further the inspiring collaboration with the innovative International Film Festival Rotterdam (IFFR), BIEFF offers the Romanian cinephile audience the rare opportunity to see some of the most interesting 2016 Tiger Awards for Short Films Nominees. Focusing on cinema's role in the re-presentation of history, the thought-provoking theme program Painting With History - curated by Peter van Hoof, Head of the Short Film Selection Commitee of IFFR - relativizes notions such as reality and fiction, falsehood and truth, analysing the ways subjectivity and objectivity intertwine in constructing our personal and collective memory and identity. In the end, history's narratives are always relative constructs, according to the perspective they are seen from.

A full of energy and color (self-)potrait of the artist traveling freely between past and present, fiction and reality, science and dream, Painting With History in a Room Filled With People With Funny Names 3, by Korakrit Arunanondchai, explores the artist’s search for identity, at the meeting area between the East and the West. Thai Buddhism and Animism and a fair measure of technology and pop culture merge in a composite of hip-hop music video and religious ad lookalike, in a film that examines the place of spirituality in the age of globalization and digitalization, at a time when heaven is a simplified version of the world recorded in high definition and spirits have been replaced by drones.

Moving from documenting the production - in a Dutch studio - of a lifelike statue portraying a white, middle-aged man, to interviews with Asmat people in Papua New Guinea, The Double, by visual artists Roy Villevoye and Jan Dietvorst, deals with the process of fabrication - of the individual and of its re-presentation - in its double meaning. While we witness the disturbingly accurate physical construction of the statue, voice-overs offer divergent narratives regarding the identity and personality of its muse. Through their various degrees of fabrication, rather than revealing, these sometimes contradicting perspectives preserve the mystery around who this man really was. The Double thus questions the very possibility of actually ever grasping the true essence of a human being, therefore inquiring in an ingenious way into the relationship between cultures, between us and them, as part of the artists’ longtime interest in post-colonialism.

Focusing on the concept of national representation, the artist Vincent Meessen represented Belgium, at the 56th Venice Biennale, in dialogue with another ten artists from different – many African – countries who share his research practice and interest in colonial history. Central part of the exhibition "Personne et les autres, Vincent Meessen & guests", One.Two.Three "revisits the largely unknown role of Congolese intellectuals within the Situationist International. The starting point is the discovery of the lyrics to a protest song that Congolese Situationist Joseph M’Belolo Ya M’Piku composed in May 1968. Working with M’Belolo and young musicians in Kinshasa, Vincent Meessen has produced a new rendition of the song.[...] The multi-colored labyrinth of Un Deux Trois, the club that was once home [...] of the artistic modernity in the Congo, offers the perfect setting for a musical dérive. Transformed into an experimental space by musicians, the club becomes an echo chamber for the impasses of history and the unfinished promises of revolutionary theory. And while M’Belolo Ya M’Piku rediscovers the song he had lost, popular uprisings break out in Kinshasa just outside of the walls of the rumba club. In spite of the cycle of violence and the militarization of everyday life, a space is created for play, polyphony and dance. The rendition that matters in One.TwoThree is perhaps less the recovery of the song than the rendition of emancipation itself, which, irresolute by nature, remains condemned to an ‘untimely repetition’." (Jubilee-art.org)

Directed by: 
KORAKRIT ARUNANONDCHAI
A full of energy and color (self-)potrait of the artist traveling freely between past and present, fiction and reality, science and dream, Painting With History in a Room Filled With People With Funny Names 3 explores the artist’s search for identity, at the meeting area between the East and the West. Thai Buddhism and Animism and a fair measure of technology and pop culture merge in a composite of hip-hop music video and religious ad lookalike, in a film that examines the place of spirituality in the age of globalization and digitalization, at a time when heaven is a simplified version of the world recorded in high definition and spirits have been replaced by drones. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)
Directed by: 
ROY VILLEVOYE & JAN DIETVORST
Documenting the production - in a Dutch studio - of a lifelike statue portraying a white, middle-aged man and then moving somehow unexpectedly to interviews on location with Asmat people of Papua New Guinea, The Double deals with the process of fabrication - of the individual and of its representation - in its double meaning. While we witness the disturbingly accurate physical construction of the statue, voice-overs offer divergent narratives regarding the identity and the personality of its muse. Through their various degrees of fabrication, rather than revealing, these sometimes contradicting perspectives preserve the mystery around who this man really was. The Double thus questions the very possibility of actually ever grasping the true essence of a human being, therefore inquiring in an ingenious way into the relationship between cultures, between us and them, as part of the artists’ longtime interest in post-colonialism. (Ioana Florescu, BIEFF 2017)
Directed by: 
VINCENT MEESSEN
Focusing on the concept of national representation, One.Two.Three "revisits the largely unknown role of Congolese intellectuals within the Situationist International movement. Used as an experimental space for the rendition of a protest song that the Congolese situationist M’Belolo Ya M’Piku composed in may '68, the mythical 'Un.Deux.Trois' rumba club in Kinshasa becomes an echo chamber for the impasses of history. [...] While the lost song is being rediscovered, popular uprisings break out in Kinshasa just outside of the walls of the rumba club. In spite of the cycle of violence and the militarization of everyday life, a space is created for play, polyphony and dance. [...] The rendition that matters here is perhaps less the recovery of the song than the rendition of emancipation itself, which, irresolute by nature, remains condemned to an ‘untimely repetition’." (Jubilee-art.org)