Guest Contributor | Aug 30, 2019 | 0
Namibia Film premiere – “An Infinite Scream”
A documentary film about the Namibian artist Imke Rust by Steffen Holzkamp will be premiered towards the middle of January next year at the Goethe Institut.
Title “An Infinite Scream”, the film was shot in 2012 by Steffen Holzkamp (filmmaker) and Imke Rust (artist). Holzkamp, a filmmaker and musician based in Berlin, followed the Namibian artist, Rust, into the Namib desert and documented her work.
For the making of the film, she arranged thousands of thorns into traps in the blistering desert heat. In another striking work, she planted black plastic roses crafted from refuse bags, in an arrangement complementing the natural contour of an adjacent dune. She also made an art statement by pouring half a ton of pure white salt in concentric circles on one of the mud flats exposed by tidal action.
Rust’s land art installations not only show her concern about the extent of exploitation and pollution happening in the Namib Desert, they are also an attempt to symbolically protect the land and raise awareness about the effects of the ever-growing uranium mining industry.
For the film, she borrows extensively from Eduard Munch’s The Scream, even confronting tourists in Swakopmund with her own rendition of Rust leaning against a barrier close to the shoreline, voicing her own infinite scream.
The Scream, of course, is famous as being the most expensive artwork ever when one of the last privately-owned versions was sold by Sotherby’s in 2012 for around US$120 million.
Can art be an invocation for change?
Shot in 2012 in Namibia and Berlin, Holzkamp’s approach is determined by the nature and pace of Rust’s artworks. Meditative sequences documenting the making of the “Salt Circles” are followed by reportage style filming of the “The Scream”, an art action at the Atlantic coast.
But it is not all dreary advocacy, there is a simple story line embedded. When the local arts association unexpectedly rejects Rust’s exhibition, the film takes a dramaturgical turn and shifts the focus to the ensuing controversy about freedom of arts.
The well-known artist, with the help of a network of supporters, now finds alternative ways to ensure her works will be seen.
Strong imagery, breath-taking locations and atmospheric music weave the film into an impressive portrait of courage and initiative in a rather conservative society.
Filming on location in Namibia was supported in part by the National Arts Council of Namibia.
The Film premiere will take place on 14th of January 2016 at the Auditorium of the Goethe Institut, opposite the Christuskirche in Windhoek. Steffen Holzkamp and Imke Rust will be present. The Entrance is free. The film will be shown in English.
View Film stills and the „An Infinite Scream“ trailer on the website https://aninfinitescream.wordpress.com/