A celebration of African premieres
The Happy Film, Roald Dahl's Revolting Rhymes, Ants on a Shrimp, Design that Heals, Eero Saarinen: The Architect Who Saw the Future, and William Kentridge: The Collaborative Artist are to be premiered at Design Indaba's FilmFest from Wednesday, 1 March to Friday, 3 March at the Artscape's Arena.
Here’s a brief intro to each (incl. trailers):
The Happy Film
The Happy Film is a feature-length documentary in which graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister undergoes a series of self-experiments outlined by famous psychology to test if it’s possible for a person to have a meaningful impact on their own happiness.
Based on the Roald Dahl/Quentin Blake classic, Revolting Rhymes is a combination of classic fairytales like Little Red Riding Hood, Snow White, The Three Little Pigs, Jack and the Beanstalk and Cinderella, but with an African twist.
Ants on a Shrimp
In this documentary, Maurice Dekkers follows Rene Redzepi, owner of esteemed Copenhagen restaurant Noma, as he relocates to Japan to set up a five-week pop-up in Tokyo. However, creating an all new fourteen-course menu inspired by local flavours poses unforeseen challenges that will either make or break Redzepi’s career.
This documentary looks into the struggles of a visionary and showcases some of the most adventurous cuisine on the planet.
Design that Heals
Founder and director of Les Centres GHESKIO, Dr Jean-William Pape has dedicated his career to combating diarrheal diseases in Haiti.
This documentary, by MASS Design Group, follows Dr Jean-William Pape, Haitian infectious disease specialist and director and founder of Les Centres GHESKIO as he sets up temporary cholera treatment tents in order to combat an outbreak of cholera in poverty-stricken Haiti. However, the humid climate and a lack of infrastructure made the disease impossible to control.
In 2010, the Group was challenged to design a cholera treatment centre to tackle the structural issues in Caribbean country. The 34-minute documentary looks at the way innovative architecture coupled with a human-centred approach to healthcare triumphed over mounting circumstances.
American Masters – Eero Saarinen: The Architect Who Saw the Future
The late architecture legend Eero Saarinen's life is seen through the eyes of his estranged son Eric Saarinen in the 30th instalment of American Masters. A giant in American architecture, Eero designed national historic landmarks such as the Gateway Arch in Missouri, New York's TWA Flight Centre at John F. Kennedy International Airport, Yales University’s Ingalls Rink, Morse and Ezra Stiles Colleges and Virginia’s Dulles Airport.
Eric goes on a cathartic journey in which he explores his father's greatest works and makes peace with the genius who abandoned his family.
American Masters has earned 28 Emmy Awards, an Oscar, three Grammys, two Producers Guild Awards and many other honours.
William Kentridge: The Collaborative Artist
While of a singular genius, William Kentridge draws on several long-term collaborators including composer Philip Miller, film editor Catherine Meyburgh and choreographer Dada Masilo to realise his film, opera and theatre productions, as well as his installation work.
Kentridge shares insights into the nature of his artistic collaborations with specific reference to Refuse the Hour, The Refusal of Time (at the Iziko South African National Gallery in association with the Goodman Gallery until 21 June) and the opera Lulu, which opened at the Dutch National Opera today. He talks candidly about what sparked the concepts, how he goes about finding the right collaborators and how the creative process plays out between the various parties.
The documentary offers insight into their collaborative process through interviews and behind-the-scenes footage of the productions that have never been seen before. It’s an engaging and amusing depiction of how these long-term, off-kilter collaborative relationships help to shape and realise ideas – the Kentridge way.
Be still and let this celebration of film inspire your creative being.
Tickets cost R80 and also get you free access to music, art and design exhibitions and installations, bars and food trucks at the Design Indaba Festival from 17:30 onwards.
In addition to this, The Labia will screen Nocturnal Animals on Saturday, 4 March. Costs R50.