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The Regina Public Library (RPL) Film Theatre, in partnership with VUCAVU and the Dunlop Art Gallery, is pleased to present a curated selection of works that showcase the work of independent filmmakers that have particular resonance with our local context. The RPL Film Theatre screens the best of world cinema. We have something for everyone, and are the only cinema in the city to consistently present critically-acclaimed new releases and repertory cinema.

The Dunlop Art Gallery is dedicated to engaging, researching and presenting a diverse range of visual artwork. The main focus is on contemporary culture. Dunlop Art Gallery enhances the quality of life of its publics by informing the practices and understanding of visual art through activities that include exhibitions, programs, publishing and collecting.

RPL Film Theatre presents
The 2020-2021 Film Focus Series

Dana Inkster

Regina Public Library Theatre and Dunlop Gallery presents

2020-2021 FILM FOCUS SERIES : Dana Inkster

 

ABOUT THE WORKS

 

The Art of Autobiography (2003), Dana Inkster 

No two adoptees are alike. Harold & Peter, Lynne & Lynn, Maureen & Stephen and Dana candidly share their stories and reveal how being adopted shapes an individual’s identity right into adulthood. Their stories underline the complexity of adoption as it relates to the human impulse to tell stories about ourselves in pursuit of figuring out where we fit in.

Each person behind these stories is completely unique but they share a common bond – adoption.  Each person has been faced with the task of filling the gaps in their personal life story.  Each one of them has delved into the art of autobiography.

Each person behind these stories is completely unique but they share a common bond – adoption. Each person has been faced with the task of filling the gaps in their personal life story.

For our second film, Dana Inkster’s film “Welcome to Africville”, Gary Varro, the Executive and Artistic Director of the Queer City Cinema wrote a short curatorial text that describes his experience with the impact of this film and the topics it takes on:



Dana Inkster’s film “Welcome to Africville”

Written by Gary Varro

“20 years ago, I programmed Inkster's “Welcome to Africville” at the 2000 edition of Queer City Cinema (QCC) in Regina. This short fictive pseudo-documentary film intimately and poignantly captures the impacts of displacement on four individuals directly affected by the forced destruction in 1969 of their community of Africville located on the outskirts of Halifax. The four characters recount sexuality, love, and loss in a way that brings a personal, pointed and political weight to the film. Coincidentally, I had researched and written about Africville for a paper while a student of Architecture at the University of Manitoba in the mid 80’s. At that time, I was also in the midst of coming to terms with my own sexuality and the impending alienation and displacement that I would come to experience as a result of coming out.
 
Dana, along with several other filmmakers, attended QCC 2000 and spoke on a panel focusing on Pornography and Community, where she discussed the devastation of Africville and the lives of queers depicted in the film. Because of the festival’s theme that included a focus on pornography, QCC itself was under attack for weeks by provincial and federal right-wing politicians and a Christian group who passionately protested outside the festival venue, the Regina Public Library. The opposition and interference was intense. Dana, along with the other guests, took it all in stride, gracefully engaging with the protesters, the media and imbuing the panel discussion with thoughtfully eloquent words and reflection. It was the highlight of the festival. Dana’s film inadvertently served to address what became a year of disruption for QCC and an attempt to destruct and destroy the festival, and denounce and erase the existence of queer sexuality in Regina. Dana’s calm and engaged presence that year was a gift and “Welcome to Africville” serves to remind me of this, and her sensitive perspective and lens.”



Dana Inkster’s Welcome to Africville is a “docufiction” that the African-Canadian community in Halifax that was razed for “urban renewal” in the late sixties. Against a backdrop of black and white archival footage of this neighbourhood under demolition unfolds a slice-in-time narrative set on the eve of destruction. Highlighted are three generations of women in an Africville family, including a proud and lustful, thirty-something dyke, plus the friendly and queer local bartender (Alexander Chapman, known for his starring role in J. Greyson’s Lilies). Lushly photographed against brightly coloured settings, the film raises the question, not only of a lost community history, but also of lost sexual histories and identities.
 

Click here to listen to a podcast interview with the filmmaker from RPL Film Theatre Ep. 17: Dana Inkster
https://www.podbean.com/media/share/pb-9x64w-e8e9b5?utm_campaign=u_share_ep&utm_medium=dlink&utm_source=u_share

 

 

...pseudo-documentary film intimately and poignantly captures the impacts of displacement on four individuals directly affected by the forced destruction in 1969 of their community of Africville located on the outskirts of Halifax.
This programme is presented to you by the Reginal Public Libray and the Dunlop Gallery:

The Regina Public Library Filk Theatre and the Dunlop Gallery thank the following organizations for their support of this programming.