Kala Azar
by Janis Rafa, Netherlands, Greece 2020, 91'
SCREENPLAY: Janis Rafa   SOUND: Nikos Kostantinou
PHOTOGRAPHY: Thodoros Mihopoulos GSC   PRODUCER: Digna Sinke
EDITING: Patrick Minks   LANGUAGE: vo: Greek; sub: Italian

Schermo dell'Arte - Archivio Film  Presented at Lo schermo dell'arte 2020 

Kala azar is Greek artist Janis Rafa’s first feature film. The title derives from a form of disease that decimated the canine population of southern Europe in the 1990s. Focused on a young couple who work in an animal crematorium, the film is set in the countryside around a southern European city that the two young people drive through to recover the carcasses of animals. Through widescreen shots, a dilated rhythm and sparse dialogue, the film immerses the viewer in a dark atmosphere, with some room left for empathy and hope. The two young people find refuge in their love, and comfort in their compassion and concern for animals. Their affectionate gestures shine light on what would otherwise be a dark existence in a desolated Greece, whose abandoned landscape bears signs of devastating economic and social crises. Janis Rafa won the Feature Expanded Distribution Award 2017 with this film’s project.

Trailer: https://vimeo.com/380728704

Janis Rafa (Greece 1984, lives and works between Amsterdam and Athens) is an artist and filmmaker. Among her solo shows: Centraal Museum Utrecht (2019) and Internatinales Kunstlerhaus Villa Concordia (2018). She partecipated Manifesta 12 Palermo. As part of Lo schermo dell’arte, she participated in Feature Expanded (2017) and VISIO (2015) programs, and in the exhibitions Directing the Real: Artist’s Film & Video in the 2010s (2017) and VISIO. Next Generation Moving Images (2015).

Selected Filmography:
Take 11: What Remains is a Wound Disembodied, 2018; Winter Came Early, 2017; This Thin Crust of Earth, 2016.

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