Chamisso’s Shadow (3): Kamtchatka and Bering Island

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The final section of Chamisso’s Shadow leads us from Bering Island to the coast of Kamchatka. The journey is the same previously taken by the German botanist, zoologist, physician and explorer Georg Wilhelm Steller and along the route Ottinger films beautiful natural landscapes dominated by the Kronotsky Volcano.

This section of the film retains the previous chapters’ focus on a multiplicity of voices and perspectives an approach which Ottinger explains stating “On this trip, I collected everything I encountered that seemed noteworthy: pictures and original footage of people who still speak indigenous languages, songs, dances and nature.” The materials, stories and experiences gathered by Ottinger throughout her journey go to the very heart of the film allowing the filmmaker to present the multifaceted cultural, linguistic and geographic changes which occur over time.

The screening will be introduced by Jean McNeil.

Part 1

Part 2.1

Part 2.2

Tickets are £7 for each part, and will automatically discount to £20 total if you purchase all 4 parts together.

This screening has been organised by the Birkbeck Institute for the Moving (BIMI), The Centre for Research and Education in Arts and Media (CREAM), the Goethe-Institut and LUX. With support from the Open City Documentary Film Festival, and in association with the German Screen Studies Network.

Jean McNeil was writer-in-residence with the British Antarctic Survey for a year in 2005-6, when she spent four and a half months in the Antarctic. She has  also worked with BAS as a writer in residence aboard a ship-bound expedition to Greenland, and has held residencies in the Falkland Islands and in the Svalbard Archipelago in the Arctic and has journeyed by polar icebreaker across the Atlantic twice. She has published four books on the polar regions, including Ice Diaries, a memoir/travel narrative that won the Grand Prize (and also the Adventure Travel category) at the Banff Mountain Film Festival in Canada in 2016. She teaches at the University of East Anglia where she is Reader in Creative Writing.

BBFC rating
Running time
177 mins
Other features
Ulrike Ottinger

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July 22nd

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