Image
thumbnail_letters-1.jpeg

Fiona Tan: DEAREST FIONA

12 Okt 2023

Fiona Tan: DEAREST FIONA

Wir haben Filmemacher:innen eingeladen, mit uns Materialien zu teilen, die für ihren Film in irgendeiner Weise wichtig waren: Inspirationen wie Fotos oder Zeitungsartikel, Shotlists, Drehbuchseiten, Notizen und vieles mehr.

Die Künstlerin und Filmemacherin Fiona Tan gibt uns einen wundervollen Einblick in die Entstehung ihres besonderen Films DEAREST FIONA sowie die immensen Recherchen  und Emotionen — die darin nun verwoben sind. 

"By chance I came across a pile of old letters, hidden down the back of an old desk drawer. Handwritten by my father, these letters were posted to me from Australia over three decades ago, just after I moved to the Netherlands in 1988. Composed on average once every fortnight, I find my fathers letters well-written, interesting, and often amusing, reminding me of events — both at home and on the national or international stage — about which I had forgotten. He switches effortlessly from the minutiae of pets at home and the task of babysitting Nikolas, his first grandson, to hassles at work and larger historical events of the time: the Tiananmen Square massacre, the collapse the communism in Eastern Europe, Mandelas election as the first Black prime minister in South Africa. I marvel at his ability to summarize the eras key global events and his calm but humane engagement with world news. Seen from a distance I am struck with wonder at the magnitude of these tumultuous historic moments, these events which have shaped to a large extent the ensuing decades. They cast long shadows.

Over many months I spent countless hours delving into Eye Filmmuseums extensive archival collection of film and moving image, an opportunity at once both exciting and daunting. A montage project, DEAREST FIONA has been painstakingly edited from images lifted entirely from silent non-fiction films shot before 1920 in The Netherlands. Some are tinted or hand-colored, which is often very beautiful, but most are in black and white. Officially categorized as non-fiction, for me this footage encompasses much more. Of course there is cliché embedded in these images—Hollanders in wooden clogs, fishermen on boats, the ever ubiquitous windmills. But beyond that two key aspects of this material struck me and are worth mentioning here. In particular the many scenes of communal life in the fields, in factories, in towns, and in villages leave a lasting impression—almost no one is ever alone. Further, the numerous scenes of heavy and physical manual labour trigger an almost corporeal reaction within me as a viewer, rendering them unforgettable.

The role of sound is not to be underestimated. In addition to the voice-over, an intricate sound design has been composed and constructed which supports the visual line, bringing the long forgotten and silent images back to life. But the soundscape goes further than a mere reconstruction of a former reality, instead sparking the imagination and enabling a journey both personal and universal. In an unusual juxtaposition of word and image it is as if the letter-writer discovers these images together with us, the viewer. The resulting film aims to be an unexpectedly emotional voyage through time and place, questioning the current status quo while hovering somewhere between dream and reality." - Fiona Tan

 

Image of movie Dearest Fiona

DEAREST FIONA

Fiona Tan | Niederlande 2023 | 100 min | eOmdU

Freitag, 20. Oktober 2023:
21.00 Uhr - Filmmuseum

Samstag, 21. Oktober 2023:
13.30 Uhr - Metro, Historischer Saal