After the screening of his film Wai'á rini, the power of dream in other Xavante villages, the people of Aldeia Nova from the São Marcos reservation asked Divino to make a film on the same ritual, the Wai'á ceremony. In this ceremony the young men are initiated into the spiritual world to develop their curative power. This is a new experience for Divino, as he has to shoot in a different village, but also find a way to try new tricks and to develop his editing skills.
During a video workshop in the Kuikuro village in the Upper Xingu, Brazil, an eclipse takes place. Suddenly, everything changes. The animals take new forms. Blood falls from the sky like rain. The sound of the sacred flutes crosses the dark night. There is no time to lose. One must sing and dance. The world must be awakened. In this video, the Kuikuro video makers tell us what happened when the moon menstruated.
Direction: Takumã e Maricá Kuikuro
Photography: Takumã, Mariká, Amuneri, Asusu, Jairão e Maluki
Interrupting the nightly news in an act of guerrilla television, Gómez-Peña returns to the persona of a Chicano-Aztec veejay—"The Mexican who talks back, the illegal Mexican performance artist with state of the art technology"—to elaborate the complications of American identity. This post-NAFTA Cyber Aztec pirate commandeers the television signal from his underground "Vato bunker", where virtual reality meets Aztec ritual. Gómez-Peña embodies the doubly radical Chicano performance artist, delivering radical ideas through a radical form of entertainment.
Forest Law underlines the persistent fact that we are yet to learn to live otherwisein an age defined by the colossal consequences of a new socio-geological order we ourselves have created through irresponsible interactions with Earth’s systems.
Over 6,000 gold prospectors invade the reserve of the Nambiquara of Sararé, and loggers raid the mahogany-rich forests, which are threatened by extinction. Pressure on the World Bank (with whom the government of Mato Grosso is negotiating a loan) could end prospecting, but the pillage of the forest continues.
In Portuguese with English subtitles.
Directed by Vincent Carelli, Maurizio Longobardi, and Virginia Valadão; edited by Tutu Nunes.
Four Ikpeng children reply to a video-letter from the children of Sierra Maestra in Cuba, introducing their village, families, toys, celebrations, and ways of life with grace and lightheartedness. Curious to know about children from other cultures, they ask to continue the correspondence.
Direction and camera by Karané, Kumaré, and Natuyu Yuwipo Txicão; edited by Mari Corrê.
Chief Pedro Mãmãindê (who directed the proceedings and the shoot itself) describes the necessity of strengthening the girls of his village by secluding them after their first menses. After several months, the village throws a party, with singing, feasting, and the ritual abduction of the girl by an allied village. When the Nambiquara of Mato Grosso see videotape of themselves performing this ritual, the excess of Western clothing makes them uncomfortable. The ritual is then re-enacted with traditional body painting and adornment.
Indians In Brazil is an educational series for Brazilian public schools that invites students to experience cultural diversity. Four teenagers are invited to discover a new world and participate in Indian daily life in two different communities. They show their emotions, curiosity and fears, and are surprised by their new friends.
Based on his ever-changing performance Indian Tails, this video features Luna sitting alone in his darkened room in front of the TV on Christmas Eve. As he sits, he calls friends, family and ex-lovers, excusing himself from all their celebrations. Luna tells us, "In the work there is a thin line between what is fictional and what is non-fiction, and what is real emotion and what is art. … There is a cultural element where I let (or seem to let) people in on American Indian cultures.
An elegy to Diane Burns on the shapes of mortality and being, and the forms the transcendent spirit takes while descending upon landscapes of life and death. A place for new mythologies to syncopate with deterritorialized movement and song, reifying old routes of reincarnation. Where resignation gives hope for another opportunity, another form, for a return to the vicissitudes of the living and all their refractions.
A myth illustrated on the stones of a waterfall, the reconstruction of a great communal hut, the attempt to recover objects kept for years in a museum in Manaus. In IAUARETÊ, Waterfall of the Jaguars the Tariano Indians, of the North-western Amazon, after decades of missionary catechism, decide to make a cultural record for future generations.
It's the time of celebration and merriment in the Alto Xingu. The dry season is coming to an end. The smell of the damp earth is mixed with the sweet perfume of pequi. But it has not always been like that: if it had not been for a death, the pequi would possibly not exist. Linking the past to the present, Kuikuro filmmakers tell a tale of dangers and pleasures, of sex and betrayal, where men and women, hummingbirds and alligators build a shared world.
Direction: Takumã and Maricá Kuikuro
Photography: Takumã, Mariká, Amuneri, Asusu, Jairão and Maluki
Logging and approximating a relationship between audio recordings of my father and videos gathered of the landscapes we have both separately traversed. The initial distance between the logger and the recordings, of recollections and of songs, new and traditional, narrows while the images become an expanding semblance of filial affect. Jáaji is a near translation for directly addressing a father in the Hočak language.
The Waiãpi videomaker Kasiripinã decides to show white people the documentation he did on his people in Amapo. He presents and comments on three celebrations that represent episodes of the myth-cycle of the creation of the universe. The theme of the Tamoko celebration is war, and it presents the death of a cannibal monster. In the second celebration, Pikyry, the dancers act out the spawning of fish. The last is the Turé, the dance of the flutes, in which the Waiãpi reenact the death of the tapir in honor of the creator, Janejar.
Produced at the San Francisco Art Institute, and featuring a few musical numbers, this jungle drama deals with a commercial corporation infiltrating the Amazon to sell beauty aids to the indigenous peoples. Witch doctor magic and political intrigue run rampant in this hot house environment, and men and women deal with the beast within and without.