GUEST: FRANCESCA BERTIN
Francesca Bertin, D/I 2020, 23 min, OmeU
Zingonia, a capitalist planned city for 50,000 inhabitants in the northern Italian province of Bergamo. At the beginning of the film, which is in black and white, we see a posh architectural model from 1964. At the end of the film, there is nothing but dust kicked up by demolition excavators. In between, people live in the city. One of them describes her arrival as a young woman right after the establishment: “A beautiful place. I thought it was a resort.” But the private investor’s dream of the shrewd deception of the workers who thought they were on vacation was shattered; only a part of the planned factories and housing complexes were completed, and the profit return missed. But many people stayed, and others came from far away. They have their own dreams, they do their own trade, and they make a living, even under clandestine conditions. They live. They write poems: “We shared the same environment. This landscape was at our disposal as a natural toy. We shared the same environment. It was an area where everything was at our disposal. Everything ends. It was just a dream.”
GUEST: DANIEL KÖTTER
Daniel Kötter, ETH/D 2020, 79 min, OmeU
Apartment block after apartment block is erected. Women carry the water used to mix the cement, canister by canister, through the rising carcasses of the buildings. A centuries-old river valley is cleared away and milled to gravel. Pastures must give way to access roads. »Rift Finfinnee« is about Ethiopia’s urbanization, about the growth of the capital Addis Ababa, called Finfinnee in Oroma. Rift refers to the rupture line between the African and the Arabian continental plate, whose offshoot, the East African rift, extends into the Ethiopian highlands close to the capital. Daniel Kötter’s film tells of the problems of the local population, of the disappearance of rural structures that seem unable to oppose the materialization of the expanding city. »Rift Finfinnee« doesn’t portrait individual fates, the film is rather an allegorical narrative about the drifting apart of the Ethiopian society.