Wild Relatives
by Jumana Manna, Lebanon, Norway, Germany 2018, 69'
SCREENPLAY: Jumana Manna   SOUND MIXING: Philippe Ciompi
PHOTOGRAPHY: Marte Vold   PRODUCER: Jumana Manna
EDITING: Katrin Ebersohn   LANGUAGE: Libanese, Norwegian, English

Schermo dell'Arte - Archivio Film
Presented at Lo schermo dell'arte Film Festival 2018
Syrian girls in refugee camps in the Bekaa Valley, Lebanon, work as seed pickers in wheat fields belonging to ICARDA, the International Center for Agricultural Research in the Desert Areas, which does research to create new species resistant to diseases and the adverse climatic conditions. 
A priest and a researcher talk about climate change in Longyearbyen, on the island of Svalbard, in Norway, where ICARDA transferred its global seed bank in 2013, in order to provide coverage in case of climate disasters. Here, specimens of seeds from a gene bank previously located in Aleppo, transferred to Lebanon at the outbreak of war in Syria, are being replicated for the first time.
Personal events from distant parts of the world are freely connected by Jumana Manna in this documentary, with an environmental theme as a narrative link. To defeat climatic conditions adverse to agriculture and oppose global corporations like ICARDA is the challenge for Middle Eastern farmers, who see native species replaced by ones selected in laboratories. In the Arctic Circle, where the seed bank should’ve been safe, temperatures rise and glaciers melt, upsetting the ecosystem. 
Wild Relatives addresses debate denvironmental issues and opens a space for reflection on biodiversity, resilience and climate change, as well as on man-made disasters and ambivalent efforts to remedy them.



Jumana Manna 

Is a Palestinian artist, born in Princepton, New Jersey, in 1987. Her work is mainly focused on cinema and sculpture. She got an BFA from the National Academy of Arts in Oslo and an MA in Aesthetics and Politics from the California Institute of the Arts. She partecipated at many festivals, including The Viennale International Film Festival, IFFR Rotterdam, and has exhibited her works in the most important museums and international institutions, such as the Tate Modern, the Marrakech Biennale 6 and the Nordic Pavillion at he 57th Venice Biennale. Her documentary A Magical Substance Flows Into Me (2015) won the Film on Art Competition at the New Horizons International Film Festival of Wroclaw.


Selected Filmography
2015 A Magical Substance Flows Into Me  2013 A Sketch of Manners (Alfred Roch’s Last Masquerade)  2010  Blessed Blessed Oblivion 


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