Tenzin Mingyur Paldron, USA 2016. 3 min, no dialogue, DCP
Hunter and the Skeleton
Gentsu Gyatso a.k.a. Bin Bai, China 2012, 26 min., Tibetan with eng. Subtitles, DCP
Kunsang Kyirong, Canada 2022, 18 min., Tibetan with English subtitles, DCP
Sonam Tseten, India 2019, 19 min., Tibetan with English subtitles, DCP
Tenzin Phuntsog, USA 2022, 16 min., Tibetan with English Subtitles, DCP
Today, Tibetans are living all over the world, which creates transnational realities. In these five short films, filmmakers from a variety of different backgrounds reflect on these different diasporic contexts, creating a series of filmic responses which demonstrate the plurality of the contemporary Tibetan experience.
Silent film poem Nyingtam brings together a series of Tibetan faces, dimly lit to anonymise their identity, alongsidetraditional music and visuals which convey conflict and care between generations, altar practice, sacred dance, isolation, rest, and love. Similar conflicts between heritage and modernity can be traced in the animated Hunter and the Skeleton, which presents a colourful version of an Eastern Tibetan folk tale with imagery inspired by thangka painting.
In Dhulpa groups of Tibetan immigrants from small communities work in a Canadian laundry facility- mostly strangers to each other, but connected incidentally as part of a broader wave of recent immigration. A different kind of exile story unfolds in Pema, in which a woman’s life is suddenly complicated by the reappearance of her father after a childhood shaped by the sadness and frustration of enforced family separation.
Finally Pure Land, shot on 35mm, builds a loose narrative around long distance conversations between a young Tibetan-American man and his Tibetan-born mother. The character wanders through a natural landscape resembling the exiled homeland of his mother, taking photographs in an attempt to “find a frame that evokes a sense of belonging.” The camera here is used as an instrument to reveal the impossibility for displaced Tibetan individuals to be seen in actual Tibetan landscapes.