“I do not intend to speak about, just speak nearby”
Since the early 1980s Trinh T. Minh-ha has been developing a theoretical, filmic and poetic oeuvre that is fundamental for postcolonial and feminist debates. Born in Hanoi in 1952, later moving to Saigon, Trinh emigrated to the USA in the 1970s during the Vietnam war.. After studying Ethnomusicology, Composition and French Literature, she taught in Senegal for three years. In 1992 she took over a professorship at UC Berkeley in the department of Rhetoric as well as Gender- and Women’s Studies. The author, theorist, artist, composer and last but not least filmmaker designates her visual and textual work as boundary event, that takes places in the in-between of categories, thus challenging and deconstructing the universal claim of authoritarian forms. In 1989 her influential book >Woman, Native, Other< was published, in which she opens up a transdisciplinary conceptual space in which the dividing lines between art and science blur and the predominant canon is de-hierarchized. Thus, the “speaking nearby” proclaimed in her debut film >Reassemblage< is also to be understood as a poetic form of linguistic action, as a political attitude towards oneself and the world.
This retrospective is dedicated to all of her eight films by Trinh T. Minh-ha, originated between 1982 and 2015, transcend between the documentary and the fictional. She develops her approach to filmmaking out of a manifest urgency: „I would say that my films are meant to change our perception of reality and our experience of cinema – which includes everything of our bodies.“ The emphasis on bodily experience is crucial in this context, as Trinh’s films put high expectations on the viewing and listening habits of the audience. She conceives the spaces of the cinema as a place that can activate that corporality. Here the films unfold their subtile but no less radical political stance.
Trinh T. Minh-ha is present during the festival and is available for a Q&A for selected films.
OPENING RETROSPECTIVE WITH REASSEMBLAGE
CURATED BY MAREN GRIMM, JOHANNA KLIER, SOPHIE PETERSON