Chris Kennedy

“There is Land: The Films of Ana Vaz.” August 7, 2018

Brazilian filmmaker Ana Vaz makes films rich in beauty and political attentiveness, engaging with the ghosts of colonialism and modernity that infuse both her country and the rest of the Americas. Her first film Sacris Pulso uses a film version of Clarice Lispector’s book Brasília as found footage to inquire into the ideological underpinnings of the Oscar Niemeyer-designed city; the prefab metropolis is referenced again in The Age of Stone, which travels to western Brazil to find a ruined structure that echoes Niemeyer’s designs. In Occidente, Vaz voyages to Portugal to delve into the history of colonialism, but instead sees it being re-performed among the Lisbon elite; There is Land returns home, exploring the backcountry to investigate the notion of land ownership in a country as vast as Brazil. Finally, America: Bay of Arrows takes us to a site of first contact, when Christopher Columbus was confronted by the indigenous Taíno — a foundational and formative challenge to a nascent colonialism.

America: Bay of Arrows (Amérika: Bahía de las Flechas) dir. Ana Vaz | Brazil 2016 | 9 min. Digital
Sacris Pulso dir. Ana Vaz | Brazil 2007 | 15 min. Digital
The Age of Stone (A idade da pedra) dir. Ana Vaz | Brazil 2013 | 29 min. Digital
Occidente dir. Ana Vaz | Brazil 2014 | 15 min. Digital
There is Land (Há Terra!) dir. Ana Vaz | Brazil 2016 | 13 min. Digital

Ana Vaz in person.