From 1-4 September 2010 two events at the Goethe-Institut will focus on professional women in the African film industry.
In Arts Work: Meeting of African women filmmakers from 1-3 September 2010 (on invitation only), 25 women filmmakers from sub-Saharan Africa will explore chances and challenges for women in the film world and steps to be taken to strengthen their voices.
During an open forum on 4 September, the public is invited to join the discussion at the Goethe-Institut from 10-1pm. The events take part in conjunction with the Women of the Sun Film Festival, the First African Women Film Festival to take place in South Africa.
"The film industry is a very challenging sector where women are still underrepresented worldwide," the filmmaker Marie Ka from Senegal wrote. The meeting of the filmmakers marks the beginning of a series of platforms, with the objective to improve the intra-African exchanges and professional situation of women artists and women working in the cultural sector titled "Arts Work". The project is interested in the situation of female artists, their limitations and possibilities, their access to resources, their acknowledgement or lack thereof - in brief: the gendered aspects of making or breaking.
For the first women's platform in September, the Goethe-Institut has invited successful filmmakers who contribute actively to change the working patterns in their field and in their country. Their biographies and their experiences, their goals and ideas are the starting point of the two-day meeting, which also represents the beginning of joint activities. Among the speakers e.g. the known Fanta Regina Nacro director and producer, culture scholars and filmmakers Christina von Braun and Beti Ellerson, director of the Center for the Study and Research of African Women in Cinema. The meeting was developed together with the filmmaker and film curator Dorothee Wenner.
Arts Work: Open Forum
Saturday, 4 September 2010: 10am to 1pm (public)
To Screen and Be Seen - Female Perspectives on Filmmaking in Africa
Goethe-Institut Johannesburg, 119 Jan Smuts Avenue
The audiovisual industries on the African continent are undergoing dramatic changes. The digital revolution has led to the dawn of a new filmmaking era that opens up opportunities for filmmaking in Africa. Increased African audiences for films that are screened on a variety of platforms, mean more filmmakers, including women, will enter the industry in the coming years.
What are the perspectives and challenges for women in this traditionally male dominated field? What lessons can be learned from experienced women of the craft? What impact will an increased numbers of women behind the camera and in decision making positions have on films yet to be made? What stories shall be told and how? Will choices of genre and aesthetics be affected? Finally, how are African women filmmakers claiming their space and with what vision?
These will be some of the discussion points during the open forum at the Goethe-Institut. This public forum will be following a two day meeting of 25 African women filmmakers and guests with the objective to strengthen the intra-African exchanges and presence of women filmmakers on the continent.
In partnership with the Women of the Sun Film Festival, and with so many important voices from the African film industry present, we want to use the occasion to engage in an open discussion about operating as a woman in the film industry.
The forum participants come from all over sub-Saharan Africa. The forum will be moderated by the filmmaker and programmer of the Berlinale Dorothee Wenner and film curator June Givanni.