Works of Asian women filmmakers occupy centre stage

As 10th IAWRT Asian Women’s Film Festival opens in multiple cities across the country, Delhi joins in and marks the Women’s Day celebration with a scintillating line-up of film screenings, exhibitions and installations as the festival rolls out from March 5 to 8.

Showcasing the marvels from women filmmakers of Asian origin in a range of genres – documentary, short fiction, animation, experimental and feature fiction – the festival will explore diversity in country, content and form.

Take a sneak peek into the highlights of this year’s festival as it presents Sleepless Nights, a powerful cinematic documentary by Eliane Raheb from Lebanon, that puts the spotlight on the possibility of forgiveness after the civil war. My No-Mercy Home, a courageous film from South Korea by Aori focuses on a young woman’s legal battle against her father in a case of child sexual abuse; And the Unclaimed on the other hand is a moving film on the suicide of two lesbian girls by Debalina. In the shorter duration segment, look out for: Carpet Weavers by Batul Moradi; TrueLoveStory by Gitanjali Rao; The Summer Flu by Priyanka Chhabra and Aisa Nahin Hua Tha Tahira by Rajula Shah.

The countries in focus are Sri Lanka and Taiwan. “The four films that are part of the selection present to us the concerns facing modern Taiwan. We bring to you three documentaries and a feature fiction that shares the experience of its people as a nation, a community and a family,” says Uma Tanuku, curator of the Taiwan segment of the festival.

About the three films that are part of the Sri Lankan selection, Subasri Krishnan, the curator of the Sri Lankan segment says, “While all the films do not necessarily deal with the aftermath of the conflict between the Sri Lankan State and the Tamils, they do in some ways reflect the tensions of a multi-ethnic society where equal rights of citizenship is not always an entitlement.”

The festival also includes a novel segment called Soundphiles – a curation of sound works. Titled –Many Echoes, Many Worlds, Soundphiles comprises works of filmmakers, artists, journalists and media/arts students that draw one into a diversity of worlds in a variety of forms – the rhythm of the textile mills of Malegaon; broken sounds from the contested streets of London; a deafening bombing in Iran; scratchy magnetic tracks of old Hindi films, and even an ethereal dreamscape from Turkey.

A seminar – Hum Gunahgaar Auratein/ We Sinful Women – celebrating art and resistance by women in South Asia will be held on March 8 at the Goethe-Institut, Max Mueller Bhavan. This day-long event will feature four sessions on the visual arts, poetry, writing and performance; on political activism across generations; and on comedy and satire. Besides, to encourage the student community to view documentaries by women and on women, screenings will be held in different colleges and institutions during the entire month of March.

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