Faux départ
by Yto Barrada, Morocco 2015, 23'
SCREENPLAY: Yto Barrada   SOUND: Simou Mohamed
PHOTOGRAPHY: Javier Ruiz Gomez   PRODUCER: Sean Gullette
EDITING: Kate Abernathy   PRODUCTION: Abraj Group Art Prize

Schermo dell'Arte - Archivio Film
Presented at Lo schermo dell'arte Film Festival 2016
Today more than 50,000 Moroccans make a living from the counterfeiting of, and the trade in, fossils and minerals. The arid region between the Atlas Mountains and the Sahara Desert, which was the floor of an ancient ocean, has become a particularly valuable land for the discovery of fossils and their subsequent commercial use. The collection of such specimens is strenuous: you have to dig by hand between fossil-rich strata and old piles of mining debris, using only chisels, picks and hoes. The difficulty of finding authentic natural artifacts gives birth to parallel counterfeiting activities through the use of dental instruments. The Moroccan artist's film - a finalist for the Prix Marcel Duchamp 2016 - calls into question the roots of our existence, the beginning of life on earth, raises questions about the legitimacy of the forgery of prehistoric life forms, and emphasizes how an unpredictable artistic aspect may be hidden behind these mystifying skills.
Yto Barrada
Yto Barrada, an artist of Moroccan origins, was born in Paris in 1971 and lives and works between Tangier and New York. She studied history and political science at the Sorbonne and photography in New York. She is co-founder and artistic director of the Cinémathèque de Tanger. In 2011, she was named Artist of the Year by Deutsche Bank, which was followed by her Riffs exhibition at the Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin, which opened the way for a large exhibition tour. Her works in photography, film, sculpture, prints and installations have been exhibited in numerous international museums. She’s had solo shows at the Goteborg Konsthall (2009), the Centre de la Photographie, Geneva (2010), the Canadian Center for Architecture, Montreal (2013), the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (2014). He participated in the Venice Biennale (editions: 2007, 2011), the third Édition, Biennale Internationale, AIM, Marrakech Festival (2009-2010) and at the Triennale in Auckland (2013). Currently the M-Museum Leuven is home to her solo exhibition.

Selected Filmography
2015 Faux départ (False Start) 2011 Hand-Me-Downs 2010 Playground 2009 Beau Geste 2007 The Botanist 2005 La contrebandière (The Smuggler) 2003 Le magicien (The Magician)

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