Screening 2 | Media as Sanctuary

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January 26, 2024

La lumière collective, 7080 Rue Alexandra #506, Montréal, QC H2S 3J5

This screening focuses on the role of digital media, screen culture, and virtual space as potent and imaginative sites and sights of refuge, solidarity, and resistance against hegemonic historical narratives, reading the image against the grain of oppressive national or colonial dominance in the popular culture.


Irani Bag (2021), Maryam Tafakory, 7′

Using excerpts of films produced between 1990 and 2018, Irani Bag is a split-screen video essay
questioning the innocence of bags in post-revolution Iranian cinema. Irani Bag is part of
Monographs, a series of essays on Asian cinema commissioned by the Asian Film Archive (AFA).


Your Father Was Born 100 Years Old So Was the Nakba (2017), Razan Al Salah, 7′

A ghostly voice echoes: the disembodied, imaginary voice of the filmmaker’s grandmother, a
Palestinian refugee in Lebanon who was never able to return to her hometown. Her words haunt
Google Street View images of Haifa, the only means she could have had of visiting her lost home.
But 50 years after the “great catastrophe,” the streets are no longer recognizable. The old woman’s
soul wanders in vain through cyberspace in search of her house, probably demolished after the
Nakba, and for her son Ameen, imagined as a little boy from another time. Over the images, which
distort and pixilate as the network connection cuts in and out, are superimposed images of the
trauma of forced relocation. Razan AlSalah pays heartbreaking tribute to the first generation of
refugees. (Charlotte Selb, RIDM)


If from Every Tongue It Drips (2021), Sharlene Bamboat, 68′

If from Every Tongue It Drips is a film that explores questions of distance and proximity, identity and
otherness, through scenes from the  daily interactions between two queer women—a poet and a
cameraperson. Created between three locations: Montreal, Batticaloa and the Isle of Skye, and
connected through languages – Urdu, Tamil & English, personal and national histories, music and dance, and the gaze of the camera lens, they explore subjects both expansively cosmic and intimately close—from quantum superposition to the links between British colonialism and Indian nationalism.


The screening will be followed by a discussion with Razan Al Salah and Sharlene Bamboat, moderated by Sanaz Sohrabi and Farah Atoui.


RSVP for the screening here.


Media as Sanctuary is part of the The Political Aesthetic: Resisting Displacement, Displacing Resistance screening series (October 2023-April 2024), curated by Sanaz Sohrabi and Farah Atoui.


The Political Aesthetic: Resisting Displacement, Displacing Resistance

The Political Aesthetic screening series explores how political action is performed by taking up space and place through artistic actions. Aesthetic and imaginative practices bring an entangled web of forgotten histories, memories, and geographies in relation to one another, mediated through new forms of encounter and arrangement. We focus on art’s capacity to reveal things-in-relation through formal experimentation, performative actions, and public interventions. We are focused both on the violence of the force of displacement, and the potency of displacement as a strategy of dissent, creating temporary and shifting spaces of inhabitation and intimacy, moving things out of the way to make room for new (and potentially liberatory) forces.

Find more info on this screening series here.