Two international online discussion took place on Saturday and Sunday, gathering youth from Serbia, Russia, Belarus, and Armenia with the author of the film “Forget me not”, Sun Hee Engelsoft.
The leading topic of Saturday’s discussion was Human Rights and Film. The guests discussed on how can film contribute to human rights promotion and how challenging it is to open sensitive social issues on screen. They also explored the importance of art in social and political change.
“If we want to send our message through art, we have to work on it a lot. To make art more reachable to the general population.” This was the central message of Mamikon Horsepyan, the Human Right defender from Armenia. He also noticed that people are still not ready for an innovative approach or presenting issues through art. “When something new comes to our societies, people are not happy for it. Always, there is a boycott, a criticism…,” said Mamikon. According to Mamikon, when art is out of standard, it is confusing for our societies, and the artists should work a lot to make art more reachable to the general population.
Sun Hee, the other guest of the discussion, agreed with Mamikon and added that it is essential to keep fighting to point to social issues in our own ways. That was her inspiration when she was creating the film “Forget Me Not” about women in South Korea and their struggles to overcome the pressure of giving up their babies for adoption. She explained that her motivation for creating such a film was in her personal fight to show the world the pressure and the context of the system directed to young pregnant women in South Korea. “It’s about culture,
it’s about pride. There is the unexpectedness of women behaving in different ways, and of course, everybody knows the reality. So they would be considered damaged girls if they have had a child before,” explained Sun Hee.
The guest from Russia, Dina Barinova pointed out that filmmaking is a way to meet the people she would not be able to approach in day-to-day life. It is also a unique chance for those excluded people to share their messages with the wider audience.
All the guests agreed that these days, every kind of art becomes social, and any statement becomes a statement of freedom, no matter what you say.
The discussion was held on Saturday, the 13th of March, gathering youth activists from Serbia, Ukraine, Belarus, Russia, and Armenia, as the official part of the KinoChronics Film Festival.