Date(s) - 04/27/2009
7:00 pm

MIT 6-120

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Event free and open to public.

Born in Mauritania, raised in Mali, trained as filmmaker in the Soviet Union and residing in France and Ethiopia, Abderrahmane Sissako will be Abramowitz Artist-in-Residence at MIT from April 19-May 2, 2009. While at MIT, Sissako will be investigating economic violence in Africa.
Sissako’s films meditate on Africa’s position in a globalized world. A past recipient of the Geneviève McMillan and Reba Stewart Fellowship for Distinguished Filmmaking at the Harvard Film Archives (HFA)will be returning to HFA for a screening of Bamako on April 20th. Bamako marks a departure from Sissako’s recent work, turning away from the film-essay of Life on Earth (1998) and the observational style of Waiting for Happiness (2002) to instead fuse modernist aesthetics with populist elements from any number of genres. The film’s Brechtian centerpiece is a trial, held in the Malian capital of Bamako, whose defendant is Western capitalism itself, facing charges that it has forcibly kept a decolonized Africa impoverished and oppressed. Alternating between the monologues that make up the testimony and a series of episodes from the daily life that continues around the trial – and sometimes interrupts (or even undermines) the proceedings – Sissako continues to explore the intertwining of public and private, global and local, modern and traditional so central to his earlier films, although now with a broader palate of tones than before, ranging from the farcical to the ironic and from the satirical to the quietly tragic.
Co-sponsors: MIT Office of the Arts