Screenings: The Mad Masters, Jean Rouch, France, and Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti, Maya Deren, Ukraine/United States

Dublin Core

Title

Screenings: The Mad Masters, Jean Rouch, France, and Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti, Maya Deren, Ukraine/United States

Description

3 Nov 2017, Fri 07:30 PM - 09:00 PM
The Single Screen, Block 43 Malan Road

Introduction by Dr Marc Glöde, film scholar and Assistant Professor, School of Art, Design and Media (ADM), NTU

The Mad Masters, Jean Rouch, France, 1955, 36 min

For Jean Rouch’s landmark film The Mad Masters, the French filmmaker himself coined the term “ethnofiction” due to the blending of both documentary and fictional aspects. Rouch takes his viewers to the city of Accra (West Africa) where he follows the Hauka movement and their religious and ritual proceedings, consisting of mimicry and dancing to become possessed by British Colonial administrators. The work caused a highly political debate since on one hand it was considered offensive to colonial authorities because of the Africans’ blatant attempts to mimic and mock the “white oppressors” and, on the other hand, African students, teachers, and directors found the film to perpetrate an “exotic racism” of the African people. An outstanding film that until today is one of the classics to be revisited and discussed.

Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti, Maya Deren, United States, 1985, 52 min

Between 1947 and 1951 the experimental filmmaker Maya Deren spent significant periods of time in Haiti to make a film about Voodoo rituals and rites. The material she shot was left unedited until after her death when it was assembled into the film Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti. Deren’s work reveals the ongoing merging of art and ethnography, one of the legacies of Surrealism, also standing as an important cultural record of Haitian Voodoo—a religion based on West African beliefs and practices, combined with aspects of Roman Catholicism. The contrasting of Haitian dance with ‘non-Haitian elements’ in a series of dream-like sequences testifies to Deren’s Surrealist interest in alternative realities. Gradually, the focus shifted from dance to the complex nature of Haitian ceremonies, while celebrating Haiti for its hybrid culture as well as for its symbolic importance as the political site of a successful slave revolution, which resulted in Haiti becoming the first modern black republic.

These Screenings are part of the public programme of Ghosts and Spectres – Shadows of History.

Date

2017-11-03

Programme Item Type Metadata

Short Description

For Jean Rouch’s landmark film The Mad Masters, the French filmmaker himself coined the term “ethnofiction” due to the blending of both documentary and fictional aspects.
Between 1947 and 1951 the experimental filmmaker Maya Deren spent significant periods of time in Haiti to make a film about Voodoo rituals and rites. The material she shot was left unedited until after her death when it was assembled into the film Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti.

Programme Type

Audience

General

Location

Onsite (CCA)

Collaboration

No

Commissioned Work

No

Education

No

Collection

Citation

“Screenings: The Mad Masters, Jean Rouch, France, and Divine Horsemen: The Living Gods of Haiti, Maya Deren, Ukraine/United States,” NTU CCA Singapore Digital Archive, accessed April 19, 2024, https://ntuccasingapore.omeka.net/items/show/4380.

Item Relations

This Item Is Part Of Item: Ghosts and Spectres – Shadows of History
Item: Jean Rouch Is Part Of This Item
Item: Marc Glöde Is Part Of This Item
Item: Maya Deren Is Part Of This Item