Paul Emmanuel’s 3SAI: A RITE OF PASSAGE wins Best Experimental Film Award at the Sardinia Film Festival 2010
3SAI: A RITE OF PASSAGE has won the Best Experimental Film Award at the Sardinia Film Festival 2010. This 14 minute film by artist, Paul Emmanuel, received a Sardinia Film Festival diploma.
Fiction; animation; documentary; and visual art/ experimental works were screened at the ceremony on 26 June. Prizes were awarded by the jury of film judges: Lorenzo Saglio, President of New Circle Cinema; Piero Livi, Dean of Sardinian directors; Maisetti Massimo, President of the National Federation of Film Clubs; Adriana Casu, cultural worker; Marino Canzoneri, Head Humane Society Iglesias; and Nando Scanu.
Emmanuel says: “I am so excited and happy about the international success my work has achieved thus far.”
The final day of the Sardinia Film Festival 2010 in Sardinia, an island off the Western coast of Italy opened with the last projections of short films entered into the competition. The award ceremony was held in the courtyard of the Quadrangle. Unfortunately Emmanuel was unable to attend this ceremony to receive his Award in person.
The film is also to be shown at the SMART Museum, University of Chicago in November.
TRANSITIONS comprises a series of five ostensibly ‘photographic’ works which, when examined closely, are revealed as sensitively hand-drawn, photo-realist sequences of images. These film-like progressions obsessively capture liminal moments of five transitory stages in life. A sixth work titled 3SAI: A RITE OF PASSAGE – a 14-minute film produced by the artist – documents the head shaving of new recruits at the Third South African Infantry Battalion (3SAI) in Kimberley. This is one of two South African military training camps that still perform the obligatory hair shaving of army recruits when they join the South African National Defence Force. For the artist, these moments that he observed raised a number of questions. During South Africa’s Apartheid era, obligatory head shaving was an enforced rite of passage for thousands of white male conscripts. This film extends the content of the second of the five drawings.
Launched in 2008, TRANSITIONS is Paul Emmanuel’s most significant project to date, and has received critical acclaim during its museum showings in South Africa. As an exhibition and film project the work explores moments of shifting white male identity and liminal spaces. It took the artist over four years to research and creates the works.
Currently, TRANSITIONS, a critically acclaimed touring museum solo exhibition, is being exhibited at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of African Art in Washington DC, where it opened on 12 May. Emmanuel has received several excellent critical reviews including one by the art critic of the Washington Post
Transitions Project Manager, Les Cohn, says: “the enthusiastic response from the Washington audiences and press to the Transitions exhibition and the warm welcome we received, will remain as a career highlight for both Paul and me!”
Emmanuel graduated from the University of the Witwatersrand in 1993. He was the first recipient of the Ampersand Fellowship, which recognises emerging South African artists and supports a residency in New York. He was born in Kabwe, Zambia.
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