HSS – Queen Mary Academic leads the film collaboration in South Africa

Published on:

March 2, 2021

Cinema has served South Asian women in Great Britain as an important bridge between cultures and countries.

The Young Curators Lab (YCL) is an annual workshop initiated as part of the UK Asian Film Festival (UKAFF) to promote a new generation of film curators and audiences and to present a diverse spectrum of South Asian cinema.

Young curators will have the opportunity to develop curatorial skills and view a selection of new feature films that have been submitted to the UK Asian Film Festival. You will select a film that will be screened as “Young Curators’ Choice” which will receive a special award from UKAFF in 2021. There have been several Queen Mary students involved in previous editions of the Young Curators Lab.

To the Dr. Devasundaram-led YCL workshops will again be attended by budding curators from across the UK, including London, Leicester, Edinburgh and Glasgow as well as Coventry, the UK’s 2021 City of Culture, of which UKAFF is an official partner.

Young Curators Lab – South Africa

Dr. Devasundaram will hold a weekend workshop for selected applicants in March, but will also lead the first edition of the Young Curators Lab in South Africa.

This year the UK Asian Film Festival (UKAFF) is working with students from Johannesburg’s Wits School of Arts and Coventry participants who will join the team for the online learning workshops.

Dr. Devasundaram has worked with the Witwatersrand University’s Center for Indian Studies in Africa (CISA) and the Film and Television Department of the Wits School of Arts for several years. In 2019 he was invited to a symposium attended by international researchers and film practitioners on the subject of “Cinema of the Global South: Towards a Southern Aesthetic”. His documentary “Films, Memories, Magic” was shown in 2018 at the Bioscope Independent Cinema in Johannesburg, which was awarded the QMUL Community Engagement Prize.

Building on this interaction, Dr. Devasundaram and Dr. Damon Heatlie (Wits University) will jointly organize a first YCL in March, which is specifically aimed at young participants from Johannesburg and whose contribution will influence the selection of the Young Curators’ Choice film for UKAFF 2021. This interactive workshop and screening evaluation session will expand YCL UK’s ambitions to South Africa and form the basis for future collaboration with scholars, curators and students at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.

Dr. Devasundaram, Senior Lecturer in Queen Mary’s Department of Film Studies, said: “The first edition of YCL in South Africa is a wonderful opportunity to gain new perspectives on South Asian cinema and to build global bridges around film curation. I look forward to joining aspiring people interact with curators from Johannesburg. “

About the UK Asian Film Festival

The UK Asian Film Festival offers an eclectic mix of films, engaging interviews, outstanding masterclasses, workshops, live performances, visual arts exhibitions and an annual short film competition. The festival aims to celebrate, honor and reward great films, filmmakers and artists from South Asia.

The festival offers a unique platform for South Asians working in film and media around the world. Screenings and events include feature films, documentaries, short films, panel discussions, and screenings on education and community.

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