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A MAN SCREAMING IS NOT A DANCING BEAR

Experimental 11m 2008

Single-channel video installation (transferred from 16 mm film), color, sound

Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary Collection

A Man Screaming Is Not a Dancing Bear explores issues of ecological witness-bearing and environmental justice within a framework of the traumatized landscape of post-Katrina New Orleans. The film moves between and interlaces three different scenes. Footage of the interior of a flooded house in the Lower Ninth Ward, the predominantly African American neighborhood that was severely damaged by the failed levee system alternates with the camera’s drifting across the lush mangrove wetlands of the lower Mississippi River Delta out of which the city of New Orleans was carved. The haunting aqueous sites are interrupted by the percussive rhythms played by the musician Isaiah McCormick on a set of window blinds, standing outside in front of the destroyed house’s window. The rhythmic drumming on this home-grown instrument subtly recall the great musical heritage of the Mississippi region, whilst exposing the domestic interior to outdoor light in an inconstant flutter of luminosity, which evokes the sediments and watery traces of recent historical events.


This film is available for the extension of the festival, until Sunday 14 November.

This film is available for audiences worldwide.

You can watch it with the following Festival Passes: