In Memory of Namibian filmmaker Oshosheni Hiveluah
I have the sad news of the passing of Oshosheni Hiveluah on 09 October 2019. Let us give tribute to her, her work and her contribution to cinema. She will be dearly missed.
I am republishing excerpts of the interview with her on the African Women in Cinema Blog and her report of the 2014 International Images International Film Festival for Women (IIFF), also on the Blog.
Well in terms of growing up, I was born in exile in Angola. Since I was born during the war my perception was for a very long time very militant because of propaganda songs, videos and the lifestyle that I lived. Then I spent part of my childhood in the former GDR and my first cinema experience was so magical and enchanting-I think it was the 1984 film, Neverending Story and I was fascinated with cinemas from that day forth. This was the total opposite of what moving images had been for me before this, so as any child would have, I fell in love and hard. We didn't go to the cinema often but when we did I could not hide my enthusiasm for days ahead. Most of the regular weekly stuff I was exposed to were the TV shows like Batman etc. you know 80's shows-sitcoms, Cosby show, etc., but because we lived in a communist state the shows that were screened had to be in line with communistic ideals and of course all channels were majorly censored. Back in Namibia from 1990 I was exposed to a lot of commercial blockbuster Hollywood films and very few African films which made filmmaking in my eyes appear to be an exclusive and distant thing and for a selective few. Because I always wanted to tell stories however I opted for theatre at the time, because it was open to me to explore. Then I remember seeingSarraounia (Med Hondo, 1986) one evening as a teenager, a film shot in Burkina Faso, and it changed my outlook and perception on African cinema. I then started digging and searching for more foreign films, going to embassies for film screenings and trying to expose myself to films I was not accessing and films that had that heart, that passion that I shared when telling stories. Then I moved to Cape Town to study and I felt like I had arrived, there were alternative theaters (cinema nouveau and Labia) that screened independent films and it was during that time that I was also learning more about filmmaking, work on set, etc.
See the obituary at Namibi Insider: https://namibinsider.com/2019/10/10/remembering-namibian-filmmaker-oshosheni-hiveluah/