The Festival

MYArt Film Festival is a chance  to see and discover quality cinema that is generally unknown to the Italian public. The choice of films pays particular attention to young directors, new trends and new audio-visual languages emerging from the Mediterranean countries.

The presence at the Festival of directors from three continents offers an opportunity for networking and exchange of ideas  in the Italian and European film industry, as well as the chance to stimulate South-South co-productions and to explore the themes related to immigration, integration and intercultural exchange.

Competitions and prizes

The program of the Festival is subdivided into the following cinematographic sections with the presentation of the following prizes:

 

Documentary competition

Documentary films created by directors of the nationalities admitted to the competition (minimum duration 60 min.) On themes relating to immigration, integration and cross-cultural exchange in Mediterranean Counties.

Prize 3.000 euros “Sprar Prize” (acquisition of rights for their own promotional activities).

 

Short film competition

Short fiction films created by directors of the nationalities admitted to the competition (maximum duration 30 min). On themes relating to immigration, integration, and cross-cultural exchange in Mediterranean Counties.

Prize 1.500 euros “Migrantes Prize” (acquisition of rights for their own promotional activities).

 

Non-profit short film competition

Short films advertising non-profit causes created by any audiovisual medium in countries or nationalities of youth admitted to the competition (maximum duration 3 min) on themes relating to immigration, integration and cross-cultural exchange in the Mediterranean area.

Prize 500 euros “Migrantes Prize” (acquisition of rights for their own promotional activities).

 

Non-competitive section

Trailers that present the recent work of established directors, critically-acclaimed films, films that have won prizes in major international festivals, the best of contemporary cinema that narrates and interprets reality on the themes relating to immigration, integration and cross-cultural exchange. The possible projection of the films submitted in the Non competitive section, will be decided at the incontestable discretion of the Stage Management.

 

Special sections, themes, retrospectives, homages

In addition to the cinematographic program, the Festival will organize meetings with the participants and round table talks.

During the event a Festival Centre will be set up, a meeting space for the attendees and the public, where multidisciplinary displays will be presented, and activities inspired by the culture of three continents, and meetings on the theme of current events will be offered.

The Festival dedicates particular attention to young people and to students with a School Space: special screenings, a panel of young judges, meetings with directors and training seminars.

The premise

For many years Calabria has been the point of arrival and welcome for people forced to run away from their homes due to the threats of persecution or war that suddenly overwhelm their lives. This is why it is also among the first regions in Italy both for the number of people welcomed and for the number of communities that have shown their generosity in this situation. This presents the region and its future generations with great social and cultural challenges that, according to how they are dealt with, will determine the quality of human relations and the development of the territory.

However, Calabria remains one of the most troubled regions of the country. Even today it is plagued by problems in the cultural, industrial, legal and social spheres. But this new role places it in a privileged position, allowing it to experiment with new models of cultural and social life and of production. Moreover, its geographic position makes it a point of reference in the physical and symbolic space that is the Mediterranean today.

With this in mind, the first challenge that must be faced is psychological and cultural. It will be vital to work above all with the new generations, so that they are prepared to face future challenges without prejudice. This is why a film festival focused on the theme of Human Rights will help to create a landscape in which different cultures can mix to create a new community.

But why a film festival?

Despite the crisis of the past few decades, cinema, both Italian and international, has retained its appeal and its communicative power. Even today it remains one of the artistic media best suited to transmit thoughts and feelings, and to speak to us of distant and unknown places with more profundity than superficial social networks. Cinema moves us, it makes us empathize with others and understand their motivations, their struggles, their environment, and above all their humanity, which is too often reduced solely to numbers and statistics.

And it is for this reason that a film festival on Human Rights is necessary, even fundamental: it is a tool to uncover the foundations of future social architecture.

Creating spaces for discussion between artists of different nationalities responds to further needs: on the one hand it offers different points of view to the debate and on the other it gives young directors the chance to promote their work. Because, due to the prominence of profit-based decision making in today’s cinemas, many works remain in obscurity. And it is chiefly documentaries and short films that feel the limits imposed by distribution logic, genres that should be protected for their double role as a training school for emerging (and later acclaimed) directors and as instruments of incontestable narrative capacity.

The context

In its history, Calabria has seen the arrival of numerous peoples from all over the Mediterranean basin. The presence of diverse cultures, co-existing in continual contrast and exchange, represents the true richness of the area and determine its vitality. Always a place of encounters between civilizations, our sea is the ideal laboratory in which to situate our research into a new concept of global citizenship that understands how to join the protection of human rights with respect for diversity. Yet the Mediterranean sea, cradle of ancient civilization, birthplace of democracy, fraternity, humanism, and human rights, has now become a watery graveyard. Today the remains of those same values lie together with the corpses of poor migrants.

Drowned in the abyss of egoism, deformed by fear, the rhetoric of invasion makes us live as though anyone who comes from outside our borders is a danger to us, as our own constricting identity becomes more and more a prison.

In this context, the Mediterranean has a central role, bearing already in its name the idea of mediation, and this awareness propels our region and future generations towards great cultural and social challenges.

By overcoming the logic of tragic opposition between heterogeneous cultures we can recover the possibility of synthesis, the cohabitation of different traditions, positive fusion, and openness of one culture to another. Racial prejudice and unjustified xenophobia will be prevented and substituted by a culture of peace, welcome, and promotion of human rights. We believe, in fact, that comparison, dialogue, exchange and reciprocal respect can be the driving forces of cultural growth.

Cinema is a particularly suitable tool to this objective, with easy access especially for the young. The art of cinematography is an immediate instrument that facilitates knowledge without being schematic or reductive. Through the point of view of young directors, the festival will contribute to the construction of meeting places between artists of different nationalities, offering spaces for open reflection to the entire community.

Giving value to the social function of artistic expression, here cinema, can be a valuable antidote to every type of fundamentalism. Combining voices to build connections between cultures and promoting new cinematographic talents: these are the two ambitious objectives that the festival aims to achieve.

The event

“My Art” Festival is organized by the multi-ethnic cultural association “La Kasbah” onlus of Cosenza – which is recipient of funds from the Dipartimento della Gioventù della Presidenza del Consiglio dei Ministri to support activities which foster socio-cultural inclusion among the applicants and appointees of international protection, and the students of secondary schools in the area – and by the young cinema production house Lago Film di Cosenza. It will take place at Cosenza on 28th, 29th, and 30th April 2017. It enjoys the support of the following partner institutions: Provincia di Cosenza; Comune di Cosenza; Associazione nazionale comuni Italiani (Anci), Sistema di Protezione per Richiedenti Asilo e Rifugiati (Sprar); Fondazione Migrantes; Fondazione Calabria Film Commission. They collaborate in the staging of the festival with the following partner groups: Movimento per la Cooperazione Internazionale (Mo.c.i.); Clown in corso; Pagliassi.it Soc. Coop.; Officine Babilonia; Circolo Culturale Popilia; Circolo Culturale Cabret; Istituto Tecnico Industriale Statale “A.Monaco” ; Liceo Scientifico Statale “G.B. Scorza”; Liceo Statale “Lucrezia della Valle”; Liceo Scientifico Statale “E.Fermi”.