The Avant-Garde • 1h 18m
Directed by Ernst Karel & Veronika Kusumaryati • Documentary • 2020 • 78 minutes
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An immersive marvel of sonic ethnography, Expedition Content draws on audio recordings made by recent college graduate and Standard Oil heir Michael Rockefeller as part of the so-called Harvard-Peabody Expedition to Netherlands New Guinea in 1961 to study the indigenous Hubula (also known as Dani) people.
In their nearly imageless film, Karel and Kusumaryati document the strange encounter between the expedition and the Hubula people. The work explores and upends the power dynamics between anthropologist and subject, between image and sound, and calls into question the whole ethnographic project.
Official Selection - Berlin International Film Festival
Loridan-Ivens/CNAP Award, Special Mention - Cinéma du Réel
Critic's Pick! "Startling and fascinating... builds to a shattering climax." —Manohla Dargis, The New York Times
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