A cycle of nine films – including feature-length narrative and documentary films, short films, and music videos – dedicated to exploring facets of Sámi identity through artistic means.
Selects from the Tromsø International Film Festival
– June 4
A package of Sámi films chosen by the Tromsø International Film Festival (TIFF), including the experimental dance films The Wind Whispers There is Someone Behind the Tundra (Norway, 2006) and The Yoiking Hand/Juoigangiehta (Norway, 2011), and the narrative documentary Sámi Daughter Yoik/ Sámi nieida jojk(Sweden, 2007).
The Wind Whispers There is Someone Behind the Tundra/Biegga savkala duoddariid duohken lea soames
Directed by Ken Are Bongo & Elle Sofe Henriksen (Norway, 2006). As dancers travel through time and space, enjoying the wonders of the sky, they find different objects that connect them to their Sámi ancestors and reveal a belief in the powers of nature. Choreographed by Elle Sofe Henriksen/Johtti kompani, the silent film’s impressionistic imagery is inspired by the poem Biegga savkala duoddariid duohken lea soames by award-winning Sámi poet Synnøve Persen.
The Yoiking Hand/Juoigangiehta
Directed by Elle Sofe Henriksen (Norway, 2011). A short documentary and dance film by choreographer and filmmaker Elle Sofe Henrikson that provides brief insight into Sámi culture. The Yoiking Hand features the unrehearsed movements of three traditional Sámi yoikers and their thoughts about why the hand moves in a certain way while yoiking.
5 min. In Sámi with English subtitles.
Sámi Daughter Yoik/Sámi nieida jojk
Directed by Liselotte Wajstedt (Sweden, 2007).Sámi Daughter Yoik is a beautiful, fractured documentary that delves deeply into the insecurity, humor, and vulnerability of a young urban Sámi woman trying to understand herself. Armed with a few Sámi phrases learned in a summer course and a kolt (traditional Sámi outer garment), director Liselotte Wajstedt sets off on a road trip determined to find a connection to her culture. Part video diary, part experimental animation, this film explores the excitement of the filmmaker’s self-discovery and her frustration at trying to fit into a culture that she doesn’t fully understand. The painful and often hilarious trials of Wajstedt reveal that defining indigenous identities is truly an international struggle.
58 minutes. In Swedish and Sámi with English subtitles.
Selects from the Sápmi Indigenous Film & Art Festival
– June 11
A package of Sámi short films and music videos picked by Dellie maa – the Sápmi Indigenous Film & Art Festival that goes beyond traditional portraits of Sámi culture and represents a fresh, new wave of Sámi storytelling and filmmaking, including works by Oskar Östergren, Marja Bål Nango, Amanda Kernell, Ken Are Bongo and Elle Márjá Eira, and Per-Josef Idivuoma and Lars-Ánte Kuhmunen.
8 Seasons, 8 Films/8 årstider – 8 filmer*
Directed by Oskar Östergren (Sweden, 2014). The climate of Northern Scandinavia fluctuates from the coldest, darkest winters to the brightest, warmest summers. It is through the filter of these shifting seasons that the indigenous Sámi developed their view of life and nature through history. As a nomadic culture, nature is the most sacred element of life to the Sámi and in these fluid conditions, four seasons are not enough to describe their relationship to it.
Comprised of eight documentary short films, 8 Seasons, 8 Films introduces audiences to the eight different Sámi seasons through the interpretations of eight different artists, spreading knowledge about traditional and modern Sámi life and expressing the different feelings that the Sámi seasons represent.
The eight seasons and their respective artists include:
Deep Winter/Daelvie | Monica Edmondson, glass art
Early Spring/Gïjre-daelvie | Sofia Jannok, music
True Spring/Gïjre | Ola Stinnerbom, stage art
Early Summer/Gïjre-giesie | Oliver Israelsson, handiwork
True Summer/Giesie | Anders Sunna, visual arts
Early Autumn/Tjaktje-giesie | Lena Stenberg, photo/installations
True Autumn/Tjaktje | Lena Lundin Skott, handiwork
Early Winter/Tjaktje-daelvie | Tomas Colbengtson, graphics/glass art
40 min. Each film is 5 min. & in Swedish with English subtitles.
*Q & A with director Oskar Östergren follows screening.
Before She Came, After He Left/Før hun kom, etter han dro
Directed by Marja Bål Nango (Norway, 2012). In Sámi artist and filmmaker Marja Bål Nango’s deeply affecting film, a young man on the verge of marriage questions the frailty of life and the complex bonds of friendship after a recent tragedy.
22 min. In Norwegian with English subtitles.
The Association of Joy
Directed by Amanda Kernell (Denmark, 2013). Charlotte (Ida Dwinger) and her husband Mads (Bo Carlsson) live a privileged but lonely upper-class life without children. An educational project for Thai girls seems to be the way out of boredom and into the charitable limelight for Charlotte.
Teenage Joy (Maryann Salvador) moves from Thailand to Denmark to be inserted into Charlotte and Mads’ beau monde villa – complete with swimming pool. But Joy is not at all interested in Charlotte’s care or her offer of education and makes it very difficult for Charlotte to be the good person she so desperately wants to be.
To Herd Reindeer/Guoðohit
Directed by Ken Are Bongo & Elle Márjá Eira (Norway, 2013). A unique, music video encounter with a Sámi reindeer herding family. We follow the artist’s father and brother herding their family’s reindeer in the tundra, in Northern Norway. Both the music and the film capture the essence of this unique lifestyle in the coldest time of winter. Old traditions are passed on to the younger generation. Sámi artist Elle Márjá is portrayed through her personal joik, performed by her father Per Henrik Eira.
Sound of Snowy Wind/Guoldu njurgo
Directed by Per-Josef Idivuoma (Norway, 2013). Sámi musician and reindeer herder Lars-Ánte Kuhmunen’s Sound of Snowy Windmusic video portrays a schizophrenic man in northern Scandinavia that ends up in a gunfight with himself. From his album Somás muittut (Stierdna, 2012).
5 ½ min.
– June 18
Written & directed by Aleksandr Rogozhkin (Russia & Finland, 2002). In Alexander Rogozhkin’s surprisingly gentle film set in Finland near the end of the World War II, uniforms, national alliances, even the markings on a fighter plane can be misleading, and the assumptions spawned by language and cultural barriers can be both comic and dangerous.
When Anni (Anni-Kristiina Juuso), a solitary young Sámi woman, offers escaped Finnish sniper Veikko (Ville Haapasalo) and Ivan (Viktor Bychkov), a Russian captain accused of anti-Soviet correspondence, refuge on her primitive homestead, the trio of lost souls – none of whom speak the other’s language – must coexist without fully understanding each other.
The Cuckoo is a meditation on the ability of people to feel tenderness for each other as individuals, even when they believe they have nothing in common.
104 min. In Russian, Finnish, & Sámi with English subtitles.