The Scar, by Brad Butler and Karen Mirza
On 3 November 1996 there was a car crash that changed the entire political discourse of Turkey. The four car passengers were: The deputy chief of the Istanbul Police Department, the leader of the terrorist group the Grey Wolves (a contract killer on Interpol's red list), a high ranking Parliamentary MP (the only survivor) and a former beauty queen (Miss Turkish Cinema 1991). In the car the police found weapons, money, drugs and fake passports signed by the interior minister (who was also the head of police). In the investigations that followed links were made between the police, the government, CIA, terrorists and the vast European heroin trade. This production approaches the scandal by using 3 separate film genres to imagine and conjecture on the conversation in the car prior to the crash. The aim is for the film to widen awareness of the Deep State by inhabiting a political imaginary that pulls the dramatic situation into an absurdist exploration of the dark side of fascism, democratic occult politics, the non rational and speculative fiction.
Karen Mirza and Brad Butler's work spans filmmaking, installation, drawing, publishing and curating. The artists draw influence from critical moments of change, protest and debate. Recent exhibitions include the 20th Sydney Biennial, 2016, and MIRRORCITY at the Hayward, 2014. The Museum of Non Participation was nominated for the 2014/15 Artes Mundi 6 Award for visual artists who engage with the human condition, social reality and lived experience. They are the recipients of a Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award for Visual Arts 2015. Karen Mirza and Brad Butler are also the founders of the artist film and video space: no.w.here, now in its 10th year.
Damselfish, by Charlotte Ginsborg
Damselfish takes as its central character the world record holder for static apnea, (the ability to hold one's breath under water), which stands at twenty two-minutes and twenty-two seconds. This phenomenal feat has confounded scientists worldwide. By combining documentary footage of a dive attempt with fictionalised scenarios, the film will interweave the experiences of the diver with three other characters; a composer and two dancers. The film will investigate, through visual montage, movement and voice, the characters' abilities to use performance to access heightened psychological states, highlighting the contradictions they experience between the desire to withdraw from life or to actively perform within it.
Charlotte Ginsborg is a London based filmmaker whose work interrogates the documentary format. She works with non-actors, often in community settings, collaborating with composers, writers and choreographers to develop hybrid performances that the characters then perform in the films. Her films have been funded and commissioned by the Jerwood Foundation, Film London, Arts Council England and Channel 4. They have been exhibited and screened widely including at the London Film Festival, 2015, Now Gallery, 2014 and Whitechapel Gallery, 2013. Her recent film Opponent won the best editor award at the Underwire festival, and a selection of her films formed part of the New British Cinema - Perspectives on reality survey at the Metropolis Kino, Hamburg, in early 2015.
Mafavuke's Trial, by Uriel Orlow
Mafavuke's Trial considers medicinal plants as dynamic agents linking nature and humans, rural and cosmopolitan medicine, tradition and modernity, in a network of curative, cultural, historical and economic connections; this includes questions around bioprospecting and commercialising indigenous knowledge in a global context. The film takes as its starting point a 1940 trial, in Durban, against Mafavuke Ngcobo an Inyanga (traditional herbalist) accused by the white medical establishment of untraditional behaviour because he used 'Western' ingredients in his preparations. The film then travels through time and the tables are turned as Mafavuke accuses the pharmaceutical industry, in the present, of exploiting indigenous knowledge for commercial gain. The evolving trial is accompanied by observational scenes connecting sites and practices of traditional medicine in South Africa in rural and urban contexts.
Uriel Orlow is a London-based artist known for his modular, multi-media installations, single screen works and lecture performances that focus on specific locations and micro-histories and bring different image-regimes and narrative modes into correspondence. In September 2016 Orlow has an exhibition at The Showroom, London. Previous solo exhibitions include Castello di Rivoli, Turin, John Hansard Gallery Southampton, Spike Island Bristol and Depo, Istanbul. Orlow's work was included in the 54th Venice Biennale, Manifesta 9 Genk, and Assembly - Recent British Artists Film and Video at Tate Britain. Orlow received a Swiss Art Award in 2012, was shortlisted for the Jarman Award in 2013, and was given the Art Prize from the City of Zurich in 2015.