South Africa: Freedom of expression workshops and awards

4 August 2015

Freedom of expression workshops and awards at the Durban International Film Festival 2015, ‘Screen Africa’.

Freedom of expression and related issues were a core feature of Arterial Network’s three-fold presence at the 36th edition of the Durban International Film Festival, as part of its Artwatch Africa artist rights programme.

A closed three-day workshop aimed at artists, cultural practitioners, journalists and human rights organisations, coordinated by Arterial Network South Africa, took place at the festival, which ended 26 July 2015.


Award to ‘Beats of the Antonov’
During the DIFF Awards night, an Artwatch Africa Award was presented to an African film that meaningfully engages with the issues of freedom of expression. The film ‘Beats of the Antonov’, directed by Hajooj Kuka, won the awards for its portrayal of the spirited resilience of local communities and ethnic cultures whose rights have been denied within their country of birth, the remote war-ravaged areas of Southern Sudan.

The Artwatch Africa project promotes the value of creative expression for society and the role creativity plays in personal development, social cohesion or social change. The award celebrates activism in the arts, and honours the courage of filmmakers and their subjects. The award is accompanied by a R15,000 cash prize.

The Artwatch Africa Jury comprises filmmaker Junaid Ahmed, author and director Gcina Mhlophe, executive dean at the Faculty of Arts and Design at Durban University of Technology, René Alicia Smith, and Peter Rorvik (seen on the photo above), secretary-general of Arterial Network. The Artwatch Africa project is supported by the Swedish Foundation for Human Rights, Swedish Postcode Lottery, Swedish Institute, HIVOS, Mimeta, Goethe Institute and Doen Foundation.

Arterial Network has representation in more than 40 African countries. Visit the Arterial Network website for more information.

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