The imagineNATIVE logo (Image: imagineNATIVE)
The 14th annual imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival is underway: this year's fest runs from October 16-20, 2013 and the line-up is "dominated by female filmmakers," organizers say. More than half of the works screening at the festival were made by women.
Organizers say imagineNATIVE is "the world's largest festival of Indigenous films and media arts," with a total of 101 films including documentaries, shorts and features screening this year. It all started at 2 pm on Wednesday, October 16 in Toronto with a Welcome Gathering at the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto.
The opening film of the festival is Mystery Road from director Ivan Sen, which also appeared at this year's Toronto International Film Festival. The movie tells the story of Indigenous cowboy-detective Jay Swan returning to his hometown in the Australian outback to investigate the murder of a young girl.
Closing out imagineNATIVE on October 20 is Uvanga, directed by Madeline Piujuq Ivalu and Marie-Hélène Cousineau and set in Igloolik, Nunavut. The festival website describes it as a film about a young man "discovering the land and culture of a father he never knew."
As well as film screenings, the 14th edition of the festival sees the launch of the indigiTALKS Video Essay Project, which challenges three Ontario-based indigenous artists (Wanda Nanibush, Rachelle Dickenson and Ariel Smith) to create a 10-minute video essay. Each artist will also give a public presentation on "a new thesis of artistic discourse in Indigenous-created film and video work."
For an idea of what to expect at the festival, check out this video, created at the 2010 edition of imagineNATIVE: