Presenting a few pictures of an ensemble gathering at the festival, Persistence Resistance @ NID, held from 30-31st January 2010 held at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad.
A screening of the film ‘Bilal’, made by Sourav Sarangi was held on the 24th of November 2009, at the India International Centre. The director was present for a discussion after the screening.
To know more about the film, log on to: http://www.magiclanternfoundation.org
Posted below are some memorable photographs from the event!
Shankhajeet De and Sourav Sarangi, in conversation with the audience!
Reena Ekka Dasgupta and Ranjan De at the table! Under Consruction films on display!
Audience at the IIC!
The filmmakers were present at the festival and engaged in discussions about the film after the screening of their film.
Posted below are some memorable photographs!
Students pondering over the Magic Lantern Foundation table!
Komita, guest lecturer, Kalindi College, Sudhanva Deshpande and Ranjan De
To know more about the film, log on to www.magiclanternfoundation.org
Posted below is a memorable photograph of their visit!!
(From L to R) : Reena Ekka Dasgupta, Auditi Dey, Shashi Gupta, Arun Gupta, Ranjan De.
Presenting a few pictures of an ensemble gathering at the Persistence Resistance festival held from 17th to the 19th April this year(2009), evoking a few nostalgic moments for all.
Kesang Tseten, Nirmal Chander and Rahul Roy
Madhusree Dutta and Vivan Sundaram
View from a distance
Ranjan De and Sonia Jabbar
Amar Kanwar , Shahid Jamal and R.V.Ramani
Kaushik Bhowmik and Somnath Sen
Sherna Dastur , Amudhan R.P. , Nandini Ramnath, Sanjay mohan
Geeta Kapur(back), Pushpmala N., Anuradha Kapur(centre), Neelima Sheikh, Ghulam Mohammed Sheikh
Prasanna Vithanage, Samina Mishra, Sameera Jain, Sanjeev bhargav
Sonia Jabbar , Sonal Jain and members of Khoj
The Magic Lantern team having a blast at dinner
Vijaya Mulay and Gargi Sen
Hansa Thapliyal, R.V.Ramani, Nirmal Chander with Arghya Basu in the background
Sanjay Mohan and Arghya Basu
Aruna Vasudev, Jai Chandiram and Neelima Mathur
Paromita Vohra, Avijit Mukul Kishore, Sameera Jain
Vijaya Mulay, Bina Paul
Ravina Aggarwal , Sonia jabbar, Gargi sen
Vijaya Mulay, Lalsawmliani Tochhawng(Teiteii) and Gargi Sen
MLF team in conversation
Kesang Tseten, Rahul Roy and Shahid Jamal
Jai Chandiram , Rajula Shah , Anupama Srinivasan
Rohan Shivkumar, Nirmal Chander and Paromita Vohra
Rajula Shah(back), Sherna Dastur and Nandini Ramnath
Premola Ghose and Neelima Mathur
Uma Devi(back), Anupama Srinivasan, Mahesh
Vijaya Mulla and Sehjo Singh
8th October 2009
Dr.K.R.Narayanan Centre for Dalit and Minorities Studies, Jamia Milia Islamia, held a week long screening session of some of our films for their students, namely -The Women Betrayed, Shit, Chaliyar… the final struggle, Notes from the crematorium, The (T)Error of POTA and others in an effort to encourage the students to discuss on issues like the behavior towards the lower castes that have been created by the society, which has been excellently portrayed in films like ‘Shit’ which has been directed by Amudhan R.P., it is a film that deals with the story of Mariammal, a woman sanitary worker, who cleans the shit from a lane in Madurai, everyday of her life and the indifference of the people who continue to shit on the street everyday rather than use the toilets that have been provided a short distance away. Also, The (T)Error of POTA was screened on Thursday,8th October 2009. Directed by our very own Ranjan De, Gargi Sen, jointly with Neha Mittal, with Ranjan De and Sudhir Aggarwal on Camera, the film is a documentation of the public tribunal that was organised in Delhi, March 2004 by several groups all across the country to highlight the misuse of this draconian law which has seen victims ranging from young innocent children to elderly people being accused of terrorism without proof, owing to the discrepancies in the POTA legislation which gives the state the right to arrest anyone on grounds of mere suspicion, and hence subjected to being treated as outcastes in the society. One of the victims, a ten year old, deposes on how he was arrested from the forest on grounds of killing a political leader and even of planting mines to cause an upheaval.
The screening of the film was followed by a discussion between some of the students and Mr.Ranjan De,who was present at the screening on Thursday,8th October, wherein the students expressed their angst towards the attrocities faced by the weakened sections of the society and their inability to be able to speak out for themselves, of how the law is being misused by the people to their own benefit, being well aware of the harm inflicted upon those affected.
Stills from some of the films that were screened:
Directed by Amudhan R P
A day in the life of Mariammal, a woman sanitary worker, who cleans the shit from a lane in Madurai.
The Women Betrayed
Directed by Sehjo Singh
Why women in Jharkand are branded and hunted as witches?
Directed by Amudhan R.P.
The world of undertakers, a community that is only remembered in the event of death.
Chaliyar..The final struggle
Directed by P.Baburaj and C.Saratchandran
A river, her people and a factory that gobbles all the precious natural resources and pollutes the land and lives.
The (T)Error of POTA
Directed by Gargi Sen,Ranjan De,Neha Mittal
A public tribunal calls to put an end to a draconian security legislation.
Persistence Resistance is on the road and we have begun our journey to colleges across India.The festival presents a range of subjects and forms the films work with, and try to interrogate the emerging aesthetics of political film-making.
The Journey till now :
- Persistence Resistance at the Film and Television Institute of India
Spanning over three days from the 15th to the 17th of September 2009 , a varied collection of films was screened at the festival accompanied by seminars and discussions with filmmakers.Some of the filmmakers present at the festival were Madhusree Dutta, Vipin Vijay, Sanjay Kak, R.V.Ramani, Rajula Shah, Arghya Basu, Anirban Datta, Sourav Sarangi, Abhay Tiwari among others. We were also very happy to have the legendary Kamal Swarup amongst us.
The seminars involved engaging discussions amongst the filmmakers and the audience that comprised of the students as well as the local enthusiasts who came to the festival,leaving an impact on one and all.
Overall, the festival evoked a good response.
Boards displaying schedule of the films screened at the FTII
A brief description of the topics that were discussed
15 September 2009, 10:30 to 13:30
Independent Cinema in the Globalized world: Challenges & Possibilities
The diverse articulations, practices and contexts that we share with our fellow filmmamkers are invaluable when they are created on ‘their own terms’, technical/ aesthetic standards regardless. Independent Cinema always stands at the crossroads of many approaches/ perspectives, interests / concerns, principles / aspirations, challenges / liabilities etc. A discussion is often incomplete without pondering on how independent filmmakers negotiate with socio-economic mechanisms which themselves facilitate and how these mechanisms also define / subvert / control independence. We feel the need to identify and explore our own fears, anticipations, anxities and ecstacies, struggles hopes and sublimations along with charting among ourselves possible courses that Independent Filmmaking stands to explore.If a forum is constituted today besides all that already exist, what could be the anticipations and possibilities foregrounded, how could it function – what would be the salient objectives / functions, how would it address the issues that we have here today?
At the Preview theatre at FTII, the venue of the seminars/open forum.
16 September 2009, 10:30 to 13:30
The Cinematic Subject / Gaze,Voyuerism & Eco-political Legitimacy
Independent Cinema today is situated mostly within an aggressive image culture of advertising, television, print capitalism etc. perpetuated by endlessly repeating loops of cross referring image tracks. In an arena fed by sensuous titillations and insatiable visual hunger how does your work exist without being ‘consumed’? Are there conscious strategies that emerge in your practice vis a vis this threat of inevitable ‘consumption’? How will independent cinema preempt/ resist objectivisation of the subject and within this context do funding, distribution, exhibition, rewards complicate the issue?
Sanjay Kak and Anirban Datta
17 September 2009, 9:30 to 10:30
Taking Film Studies to the Laboratory
Lecture by Moinak Biswas
Moderator : Suresh Chabria
Open Forum 10:30 to 13:30
Reality & Re-presentation : Responsibilities / Scripting the ‘real’ & anticipating the Future
From the beginnings of Cinema in the time of the reportage, newsreel and cinema verite to the times of ‘reality’ tv and the growing television documentary market, what is the changed context of looking at the ‘real’? Does independent cinema work towards creating a space for countering this ‘real’ ? How ‘personal’ is ‘personal’ enough to distinguish itself from the existing popular image codes while keeping the ‘universal’ interest intact. Does the independent filmmaker feel challenged by a ‘real’ that resists the expected/desirable ‘representation’? How does cinema contribute to reality?
Lucia King, Madhusree Dutta, Rajula Shah and Sankalp Meshram
Arghya Basu, Kamal Swarup , Anirban Datta and Vipin Vijay
The Main Theatre, FTII
The main theatre corridor, with lamps made by the students @ FTII.
R.V.Ramani, Sourav Sarangi and Somnath Sen
- A response to the festival
This is a letter written by a student at the Film and Television Institute of India in response to the ‘PERSISTENCE RESISTANCE’ festival held at the institute from the 15th to the 17th of September, 2009.
‘This is an email to express my gratitude to your organization and co-organizers for having spreading the seeds of Cinema. I think I have already expressed to you this orally. But the words document it!
The festival was a gentle scold and it really came at the perfect timing. I was squeezed between trying to complete the diploma film’s post-production and shaping up my post-school future. The realization of how tedious a work of fiction can become, has risen inside me and slowly a series of questions fall into my shoulders: Which continent, where, how… to make films? As the magic lantern shone on campus, it showed me a Way, the Independent documentary making.
So many stories on which to switch on the camera and the mic that the normal path of fiction don’t allow to do, here in this country. It’s overwhelming to imagine the blank screens to fill with this Way.
In the three-days’ festival, the theaters emptied on me rivers of inspiration. The real joy lied in-between meeting the filmmakers and watching their films. In the sense that it was only this or that particular film or this or that particular director but the fact that both were united in one time and space zone. Ex: I met Ramani through the workshop he gave for our direction-batch and I watched few of his films, all separately. But an “intensity”, something, some aura, was created with the fusion of the two side by side !
Anyway, Thank you again for the Mela, the family-meeting, the festival, the Institution etc…
Yes this milieu gets stronger with such event, helping to rise consciousness in the makers and viewers about the Strength of the Independent docu Cinema.
Thank you very much.
(a student at the Film and Televsion Institute)
- Persistence Resistance at the Social Communications Media Dept,Sophia Polytechnic.
The second leg of the festival was held at Mumbai, at the Sophia Polytechnic from the 19th to the 21st September 2009. Herein , films were screened categorically under seperate themes of Gender, Citizenship and also under technical themes like editing, camera etc, and was well recieved by the audience.
The presence of filmmakers like Paromita Vohra, Avijit Mukul Kishore , Neeraj Voralia and Hansa Thapliyal helped in establishing a connect with the students wherein they cited their experiences and answered the doubts of the students.
PERSISTENCE RESISTANCE aims to celebrate a cinema space that engages with the diverse nature of films today. There is the effort to bring all the movements of the audiences and matters of films a little closer together, in a collective space to experience the diversity of time.
The term Persistence comes from the phenomenon of ‘PERSISTENCE OF VISION’ explained as a visual phenomenon where an image is retained in the retina of the eye for about 1/16th of a fraction of a second, creating an illusion of continuous motion in film and video. Also, persistence of the idea, the story, the thought that once absorbed is retained in our memory.
Wherein resistance is described as one’s resistance to a concept or thought, that one undergoes, since every person has a different perspective, and one’s idea may be opposed or argued into to come to a logical conclusion.
Documentary cinema is a new way of telling stories and tends to have constructed text put together aesthetically.
Broadly, the aim is to make films that are socially and politically relevant, but art is not supposed to bring about change, that is misuse of art.
Documentary filmmakers are usually asked about changes that they have been able to bring about, but that is not their intention. A confusion exists as to what a documentary is – whether it is news or enacted cinema.. . One would like to state this form of art as a visual representation of one’s thoughts, which in itself tends to involve a lot of research,a lot of vigour, a pre-condition almost prevalent in all, that one has to get into the depth of his subject.
These artists,they work for passion. Documentaries allow one to be a complete filmmaker , instead of being able to cover only one aspect – script or direction, which is difficult in other forms of cinema. It entails the portrayal of reality that is subjective to one’s perception.
The new generation of filmmakers have access to newer technologies.. their understanding of the form is different.