Solas Nua's CIFF@Home: "Phantom Islands"
November 10, 2021
Solas Nua's CIFF@Home and NYU DC Dialogues presented this evening's screening of, Phantom Islands. Phantom Islands is an experimental film directed by Rouzbeh Rashidi that exists at the boundary of documentary and fiction. It follows a couple adrift and disoriented in the stunning landscape of Ireland’s islands. This deliberately melodramatic romance is constantly questioned by a provocative cinematic approach that ultimately results in a hypnotic and visceral inquiry into the very possibility of documentary objectivity.
After the film, there was a discussion with Rouzbeh Rashidi and Solas Nua's Jackie Hoysted. Introductions to the program were provided by Solas Nua's Kate Meenan-Waugh.
Hand-picked by Solas Nua's Capital Irish Film Festival, CIFF@Home is a bi-monthly, curated series of Irish film. Selected for you to watch from the comfort of your own home, registration gave attendees access to an on-demand film link to view before Nov 10.
Registration was required in order to receive the film link to watch on your own prior to the live Zoom webinar discussion. Please note this discussion was recorded. Live auto-transcript captioning was available on this Zoom webinar.
2018 | Experimental Drama | Runtime: 86 minutes | English (No dialogue)
Phantom Islands was conceived as a creative documentary, a place where documentary and fiction become indistinguishable. At what point does a person or landscape that is filmed become fiction? At what point does a fictional construct collapse back into documentary reality? These questions have always haunted Rouzbeh Rashidi and played a crucial role in his filmmaking. He makes films with an almost documentary approach, using places and people that he encounters and responds to them with an uncommon degree of freedom and spontaneity. Rouzbeh’s films are constructed from accumulated footage rather than from a predetermined script, which is a documentary method. Phantom Islands consciously examines the tension between these two apparently opposing categories of filmmaking that seem less and less distinguishable the closer you look at them.
About the Filmmaker
Rouzbeh Rashidi (born in Tehran, 1980) is an Iranian-Irish filmmaker. He has been making films since 2000, at which time he founded the Experimental Film Society in Tehran. Rashidi has worked entirely away from mainstream conceptions of filmmaking, striving to escape conventional storytelling stereotypes. Instead, he roots his cinematic style in a poetic interaction of image and sound. His work is deeply engaged with film history, and primarily concerned with mysticism, philosophy, esotericism, cosmology, phenomenology, and hauntology.
About the Interlocutor
Jackie Hoysted, (b. Dublin, Ireland) is based in Montgomery County, Maryland and is an award winning interdisciplinary artist, curator and activist. She has had solo exhibitions across the US and her work has been featured in the: Washington Post, Washington City Paper, HuffPost, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, and Reno Gazette-Journal. She is the recipient of grants from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Maryland State Arts Council and the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County.
She is co-founder of ArtWatch, a DC artist collective focused on positive political activism that realized the One House project (2017 & 2018) – a collaboration of 300 DMV artists standing up for equality and inclusion. Jackie has a degree in computer science from Trinity College Dublin and a fine arts degree from the George Washington Corcoran School of the Arts and Design.
Website: JackieHoysted.com | Instagram: @jackieHoysted