Limitless Cinema in Broken English

March 7, 2008


Filed under: Uncategorized — celinejulie @ 7:49 pm

This is a press release from the Bangkok Experimental Film Festival

The 5th Bangkok Experimental Film Festival
The More Things Change … 25-30 March, 2008


Curator’s Introduction

BEFF 5 will showcase new experimental film and video work from Thailand and around the world. Our open call for submissions attracted over 380 submissions, ranging in length from a couple of minutes to a couple of hours. We were thrilled that over 140 works were submitted by Thai artists and filmmakers.

Although we will screen both Thai and international work, BEFF 5’s core program responds directly to Thailand’s cultural and political reality. This work offers a refreshing, innovative and critical reflection on contemporary Thai society.

BEFF 5 is not a hard-core ‘experimental film’ program, but rather a platform for a wide range of alternative screen culture, including artists’ films, video art and animation, independent short films and experimental documentaries.

The program is divided into 7 sub-programs, as follows. All times are approximate; and the venue info here is provisional at this stage (to be confirmed).

1. The More Things Change (core program)

The central theme of BEFF 5 (The More Things Change …) reflects two strong themes in recent Thai screen culture: first, a concern with the imagery of everyday life; and second, a focus on the political turmoil that has gripped the country since the fall of the Thaksin administration in late 2006. In the core BEFF 5 program, these two themes are interwoven.

Governments come and go, but the spiritual, biological and seasonal cycles of daily life go on. The Thai people seem to take political upheaval in their stride. Yet the uncertainty affects everyone, subtly changing the rhythms of work and play, in the city and the countryside. What is the relationship between the cycles of everyday life and the repeating patterns of politics?

3 programs; approx. 90mins each; mostly Thai
@ all venues

2. Walee Ra-Ruen / fluid dynamics

This section conjures up the ancient symbolism of water. A poetic program of films will explore the metaphor of water as a medium – the medium of life, of health, but also of contagion; a channel for the exchange of goods and people, of new ideas, of hopes and blessings. This program will be screened as part of BEFF 5’s opening night event, on and beside the Chao Phraya River.

1 program; approx. 1 hr; Thai and International
@ Gallery VER, Klong San

3. Media Art & Animation

Bold, playful and often abstract, this showcase of media art, animation and abstract video work will explore the boundaries of these media. All over the world, artists are using new media to express themselves. At the same time, many are investigating the media tools that shape modern life so powerfully, and how these media shake up the histories of art, film and television.

2 programs; approx. 1 hr each; Thai and International
@ Gallery VER, The Alliance Française, Bangkok, Jim Thompson House (library)

4. Mobile Ciné

A roaming program of guerrilla screenings will take place in public space, leaking alternative dreams into the concrete jungle. Under the direction of conceptual artist and cinéphile Pratchaya Phinthong, the mobile ciné will take experimental film where it has never been before. Works will be drawn from the 3 sub-programs above, and supplemented with Pratchaya’s own selections.

1 program; duration variable; Thai and International
@ various locations, central Bangkok

5. BEFF 5 International Harvest: experimental film & video from around the world

A showcase of new experimental film and video work harvested from around the world. This will include Special Programs put together by guest curators – one from Germany (supported by the Goethe Institute) and one from Australia (supported by MAAP-Multimedia Art Asia Pacific).

4 programs; approx. 90mins each; mostly International
@ Alliance Française, Gallery VER, Jim Thompson House (library)

6. Doco-Loco

Documentary film has also been challenged by the changing media landscape. In the era of digital mobile devices, webcams and reality TV, the documentary has strayed from its traditional function of recording truth, and has been reborn with a new sense of adventure, flirting with fiction and ambiguity. This program spans conventional documentary work and newer, experimental forms.

3 programs; approx. 90mins each; Thai and International
@ Alliance Française, Jim Thompson House (library)

7. Thai Buffet

A special feast of independent and experimental films by Thai filmmakers, curated by Thunska Pansittivorakul for ThaiIndie and Chalida Uabumrungjit for the Thai Film Foundation. This sub-program will bring the work of emerging artists into focus, alongside some landmarks in Thai film history. Includes a premiere screening of new work by Thai illustrator and animator Lolay (Thaweesak Srithongdee).

3-4 programs; approx. 1 hr each; mostly Thai
@ Alliance Française, Jim Thompson House (library)


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