ICA announces full program for “FRAME of REPRESENTATION”

December 6, 2021

The Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) has announced the full programme
for FRAMES of REPRESENTATION (FoR), its annual international film festival dedicated to the cinema of the real. The festival takes place at the ICA on The Mall in London from Thursday 25 November to Saturday 4 December 2021.

FoR21 presents 20 premieres from Africa, the Americas, Asia and Europe within this year’s thematic focus of (Re)Imagining. The programme explores film practices at the intersection of image production, collaboration and fabulation, while also touching on notions and ideas relating to co-creation, direct observation, manipulation and the ethical implications of artistic production.

An accompanying line-up of masterclasses, workshops, performances and director Q&As will further interrogate the relationships between creation, reality and artifice in relation to the programme.

All but one of the 20 films on the FoR21 programme is a UK premiere, with the other presented for the first time in London. Highlights include:

A Night of Knowing Nothing, Payal Kapadia’s bold and distinctive debut feature, which was awarded with the Œil d’Or (‘Golden Eye’) for the best documentary at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

El Gran Movimiento, a powerful new work on the plight of the Bolivian working classes by Kiro Russo – recipient of the Special Jury Prize in the Horizons section of this year’s Venice Film Festival.

A Man and a Camera, Guido Hendrikx’s spectral, door-to-door journey through the Netherlands that screened to acclaim at International Film Festival Rotterdam 2021.

The Last Shelter by Ousmane Zoromé Samassékou, winner of the top prize in CPH:DOX’s international competition, which depicts intimate portraits of migrant journeys in the vast Saharan deserts.

Archipelago (Archipel) by Félix Dufour-Laperrière probes questions of national identity in contemporary Québec and will be the first ever animated work to be screened at FoR.

The Tale of King Crab (Re Granchio) by Alessio Rigo de Righi and Matteo Zoppis, a picaresque tale of immigrants and outsiders that merges reality and fabulation, which was recently screened at the Directors’ Fortnight in Cannes this year.

Travel guidance and restrictions permitting, the ICA will welcome all these filmmakers to introduce their films in-person, along with the other directors and artists whose works also feature on the FoR21 programme. Guests will include Zia Anger, Theo Anthony, Daniel Blumberg, Toia Bonino, Todd Chandler, Marine
de Contes, Carlos Alfonso Corral, Federica Di Giacomo, Félix Dufour-Laperrière, Tamer El Said, Guido Hendrikx, Audrey Jean-Baptiste, Maxime Jean-Baptiste, Payal Kapadia, Salomé Lamas, Zhao Liang, Tali Liberman, Felipe López Gómez, Roberto Minervini, Tadhg O’Sullivan, Iva Radivojević, Alessio Rigo de Righi, Gianfranco Rosi, Kiro Russo, Ousmane Zoromé Samassékou, Virgil Vernier, Matteo Zoppis, and the Sonic Liberation Front with Radio alHara and Recordat. Full film and event listings can be found at the end of the press release

FRAMES of REPRESENTATION (FoR) was conceived in 2015 as a laboratory
to engage with new visions of the cinema of the real, supporting the exhibition, production and distribution of innovative and politically aware cinematic languages. The festival amplifies ICA CINEMA’s commitment to nurturing and connecting avant-garde filmmakers, artists and audiences with cinema-goers as an essential experience, acting as part of a community while striving to protect fragile and inspiring forms of artistic production.

In addition to the premieres, FoR21 also features the second edition of PROGRESSIO. This pioneering platform was launched in 2019 by the ICA, in association with Cineteca Madrid and the Sundance Institute in the US, to support independent filmmakers in the development of feature-length projects by engaging with the aesthetic and political aspects of their works and facilitating exchanges with key industry guests. This year, Marine de Contes and Tamer El Said have been invited to share their upcoming feature films at FoR21.

n annual highlight of the festival is the day-long symposium titled ‘how to think: Radio Silence’, which this year takes the form of a community radio broadcast. ‘Radio Silence’ brings together intimate and informal contributions from many illustrious academics. Other events on the programme include Zia Anger’s My First Film, an experimental and partly improvised multimedia performance that seeks
to reinterpret conventional frameworks of the cinematic experience; and a rare
solo performance by experimental musician, composer and artist Daniel Blumberg, blurring the boundaries between songform and free improvisation.

The festival will also feature an online broadcast created in collaboration with the Sonic Liberation Front, a group of sound platforms and sonic artists who have come together with the Bethlehem-based station Radio alHara to unify their sound for Palestine. Sound artists and DJs from the Sonic Liberation Front and Radio alHara will curate and present music and sound art at the Opening and Closing Night events for FoR21, with the support of MUBI – a global streaming platform and film distributor.

FRAMES of REPRESENTATION 2021 will provide a space to question the idea of cinematic authorship, co-creation and control in the formation of the moving image, encouraging audiences to actively participate in discussions and form a collaborative community with filmmakers.


Opening Night: A Night of Knowing Nothing by Payal Kapadia + Q&A
Winner of the best documentary award at Cannes, Payal Kapadia’s immersive work addresses the political complexities of contemporary India.
Thursday 25 November, 8pm

Performance – Sonic Liberation Front
A sonic narrative imagined and developed especially for FoR21 and performed by Recordat, with the support of MUBI.
Thursday 25 November, following A Night of Knowing Nothing

Workshop – Radio alHara
A workshop with the Radio alHara collective, followed by a performance from sound platform Recordat.
Friday 26 November, 5pm

Seeing Red (La Sangre en el Ojo) by Toia Bonino + Q&A
Toia Bonino subverts archetypes of crime movies and revenge tragedies in this multi-layered portrayal of the scars caused by toxic masculinity. Friday 26 November, 6.20pm

El Gran Movimiento by Kiro Russo + Q&A
Kiro Russo’s feature blends the real with the fantastical, exploring the plight of the working classes in La Paz, Bolivia.
Friday 26 November, 8.15pm

DJ set – Radio alHara
A DJ set curated by Radio alHara in the ICA Bar. Friday 26 November, following El Gran Movimiento

Symposium – how to think: Radio Silence
A day-long listening event bringing together intimate and informal contributions from artists, thinkers, activists and healers, plus a screening of Tío Yim by Zapotec director Luna Marán.
Saturday 27 November, 11am-3pm

The Aesthetics of Framing: Roberto Minervini in Conversation
Filmmaker Roberto Minervini (The Other Side, What We Gonna Do When the World’s on Fire?) joins Sandra Hebron, Head of Screen Arts at the National Film & Television School, for an in-depth conversation about his cinema.
Saturday 27 November, 3.30pm

Il Palazzo by Federica di Giacomo + Q&A
Both humorous and melancholic, Federica Di Giacomo’s film reconstructs the life of a man and an artist through stories of those who knew him. Saturday 27 November, 5.30pm

Masterclass – Cinematic Visions: The Methodologies of Gianfranco Rosi
Italian filmmaker Gianfranco Rosi joins us to explore aesthetics and ethics – from his early films all the way through to Notturno, which will be screened after the masterclass with the support of MUBI.
Saturday 27 November, 7.45pm

Notturno by Gianfranco Rosi
Gianfranco Rosi’s kaleidoscopic, audacious and uncompromising portrait of life in the Middle East.
Saturday 27 November, following the masterclass

Performance – Daniel Blumberg
A rare and intimate live concert from the experimental musician, composer and artist Daniel Blumberg, blurring the boundaries between songform and free improvisation.
Saturday 27 November, 10.45pm

Bulletproof by Todd Chandler + Q&A
Todd Chandler examines American gun violence through the lens of the safety rituals now required in thousands of US schools.
Sunday 28 November, 1pm

All Light, Everywhere by Theo Anthony + Q&A
Theo Anthony’s searching feature questions and reimagines the idea of the objective lens in reference to 21st-century American policing.
Sunday 28 November, 3pm

Dirty Feathers by Carlos Alfonso Corral + Q&A
Inspired by the death of his uncle, Carlos Alfonso Corral’s debut feature seeks to understand the homeless experience in El Paso, Texas.
Sunday 28 November, 5pm

A Man and a Camera by Guido Hendrikx + Q&A
Guido Hendrikx asks us to reconsider who we are when we find ourselves on camera, and how we fill the silences in our interactions with strangers.
Monday 29 November, 6.20pm

Performance – My First Film by Zia Anger
Artist and filmmaker Zia Anger presents an adapted version of My First Film, a multimedia performance that resists the traditional cinematic experience.
Monday 29 November, 8.45pm

Workshop – Fabulation in the Cinema of the Real
Directors Guido Hendrikx, Tadhg O’Sullivan, Iva Radivojević and Matteo Zoppis join film critic and script consultant Wim Vanacker to consider how cinematic fabulation can expand the language of the moving image.
Tuesday 30 November, 6pm

FoR Shorts #1: Silabario + Hotel Royal + La Cumbre + Q&A Silabario by Marine de Contes
This hopeful short captures the quiet resurgence of a forgotten language in the Canary Islands.
Hotel Royal by Salomé Lamas
A chambermaid constructs the stories of hotel rooms’ occupants from what they’ve left behind.
La Cumbre by Felipe López Gómez
López Gómez pays a moving return visit to his isolated familial home in the Colombian Andes.
Tuesday 30 November, 8.15pm

I’m So Sorry by Zhao Liang + Introduction by Nat Muller
The nightmares of the nuclear age cast a long shadow in Zhao Liang’s poetic apology to future generations.
Wednesday 1 December, 6.15pm

The Last Shelter by Ousmane Zoromé Samassékou + Q&A
Ousmane Zoromé Samassékou meets some of the countless migrants looking for a route out of Africa, and those returning home.
Wednesday 1 December, 8.15pm

To the Moon by Tadhg O’Sullivan + Q&A
Tadhg O’Sullivan’s film is a poetic ode to the ways in which this celestial body impacts upon our lives and cultural heritage.
Thursday 2 December, 8.15pm

Aleph by Iva Radivojević + Q&A
Iva Radivojević’s feature leads us through a labyrinth of countries, forms and perspectives to reach what Jorge Luis Borges described as ‘the unimaginable universe’.
Friday 3 December, 6pm

FoR Shorts #2: Kindertotenlieder + Unrendered Road + Listen to the Beat of Our Images + Q&A
Kindertotenlieder by Virgil Vernier
Vernier examines the cyclical nature of oppression and revolt through the lens of the 2005 French riots.
Unrendered Road by Tali Liberman
A philosophical road movie traveling between Jerusalem and Jericho.
Listen to the Beat of Our Images by Audrey and Maxime Jean-Baptiste
A short that gives voice to a Guianese community displaced by France’s space race.
Friday 3 December, 8.15pm

Archipelago (Archipel) by Félix Dufour-Laperrière + Q&A
Félix Dufour-Laperrière’s poetic, playful and political travelogue reimagines his native Québec.
Saturday 4 December, 6pm

Closing Night: The Tale of King Crab (Re Granchio) by Alessio Rigo de Righi & Matteo Zoppis + Q&A
A picaresque tale of immigrants and outsiders that merges reality and fabulation.
Saturday 4 December, 8.15pm

Performances – Sonic Liberation Front & Radio alHara
FoR21 ends with music and live performances curated by Radio alHara and the Sonic Liberation Front, running until 3am, with the support
of MUBI.
Saturday 4 December, following The Tale of King Crab (Re Granchio)

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