Batum takes as its starting point the experience of near drowning in the Black Sea of Batumi, Georgia. As such, the film is induced with a desire for an auto-ethnographical self-interrogation. Images that feature in the film are a constellation of personal and prosthetic memories, acquired through historical and cultural knowledge as exemplified by the poems of Osip Mandelstam and Joseph Stalin, among other cultural tropes. While making Batum I was set to explore a certain displacement of identity that emerges when we encounter past experiences. I sought to experience how memories become fiction once recorded and how in this process of recording, the camera itself holds a mysterious agency. I am, above all, always interested in ways in which film, as one of the technologies of memory, can be seen as an innovative creator of memories themselves. The film also investigates how the complex relationship between personal and collective memories often subverts the social and political identity constructions.
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2016|