Indigenous Film Showcase in Venezuela Open to All Filmmakers

Rick Kearns
3/30/14

The Wayaakua Indigenous Audiovisual Foundation of Venezuela, (known by its Spanish acronym of MICIV) is inviting all indigenous and non-indigenous filmmakers of the world to participate in the 2nd International Indigenous Film Showcase of Venezuela, this year entitled Sabino Romero Lives.

The director of the showcase is the internationally respected Wayuu filmmaker, photographer and activist David Hernandez Palmar. Palmar is known throughout Latin America, Europe and the United States for his documentaries and photos. He also was an official representative of the Wayuu (who live across Venezuela and Colombia) in 2009 when he made presentations to U.S. legislators about conditions in his territory and engaged in repatriations discussions with staff at the Smithsonian Institute.

In the press statement for the showcase, Palmar indicated that indigenous and non-indigenous filmmakers are welcome to submit materials but that, all subjects must be related to Indigenous Peoples, "...including: territory, spirituality, traditional medicine, historical memory, art, human rights, displacement, war, self-determination, impacts of mining and mega-projects."

This year's showcase is dedicated to the memory of Yukpa leader Sabino Romero who was murdered last year while on his way to an indigenous election in the Sierra de Perija region in western Venezuela. Romero was an activist for efforts to remove ranchers and others who have refused to leave the territory that was deeded to the Yukpa people by the administration of former President Hugo Chavez.

While the event is dedicated to Romero, the showcase organizers state that, "Films that directly promote political parties, government institutions, NGOs or religious movements will not be considered."

 The MICIV is organized by the Wayaakua Foundation, and is made possible due to the efforts of various communication collectives, the support of the National Autonomous Cinematography Center (CNAC), and the National Cinematheque Foundation (FCN), both from Venezuela.

Films will be screened in alternative venues, indigenous communities, universities, and non-profit outreach events organized by the Showcase. Details on those locations will be published on the MICIV website.

Non-Spanish language films must be subtitled in Spanish and the deadline for submissions is April 11, 2014.

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