SHADOWS OF YOUR CHILDHOOD
RUSSIA 21 MIN, 2019
Our house becomes shrouded in the silence of night. It grows long shadows accentuated by the random sparks of the kerosene lamp. For little Stesha, the darkness becomes a way into another world that is both frightening and fascinating. Fragments of elusive memories, voices and shimmers of light – these are the flickering sensations of childhood, and they stay with us forever.
Graduated from Russian State Institute of Cinematography named after S. A. Gerasimov (aka VGIK), the Faculty of Cinematography (workshop of I.S. Klebanov) in 2010. In 2007 he received the President’s grant for talented youth. In 2013 he received the National Award in the field of documentary film and television Laurel Branch for 2013 in the category Best professional cinematographer. Director of the short films The Breath Of The Tundra (2012), The Cuckoo (2013), Idee fixe (2015), Janker (2017), Katya and Stephanie. Portrait in the Interior (2018), Shadows of your childhood (2019), Hard to be a friend (2021).
- Visions du Réel / Switzerland
- Festival Internacional de Cine Independiente de La Plata FestiFreak / Argentina
- Aesthetica Short Film Festival / UK
- Accordi @ DISACCORDI International Short Film Festival / Italy
- EnergaCAMERIMAGE / Poland
- 23rd Olympia International Film Festival for Children and Young People / Greece
- Artdocfest / Russia
- Laurel Branch Award for the Best Art Film / Russia
- Window to Europe / Russia — Creative Search Prize
- Tampere Film Festival / Finland — Best documentary Award
When my daughter Stefania was born, I started to film her constantly almost from a moment of her birth. I understand nothing remains as a rule in one’s memory from early infancy (about under three years of age), so I wanted to preserve this part of her life for my daughter. It comes out, this was the first film with her participation - "Katya and Stefania. A Portrait in Interior". Years later, my daughter would wish to look at herself as a baby and, of course, it is unlikely that memory would react somehow to it. But if some images somehow come from the past, then it would not be the visual reality in a proper sense of the word. As a result at some moment I had got an idea to try to visualize of how we see the world in childhood, an experience, which in later life exists somewhere at the bottom of our memory in a form of snatches of conversations, flashes of light and shadows. In another word, I decided to try to provide my daughter with her future memories. I started working out a visual solution that would correspond to this task. I made a decision that there would be nothing concrete, only silhouettes and shadows – black and white. I tried to limit using the color - only yellow (warm) and blue (cold). Relatively speaking, I wanted to present reality at a "zero degree" level (using Roland Barthes’s image of Albert Camus manner), simplify it as possible, discard all unnecessary details, leave only spots and lines. In this I was inspired by images of Yuri Norstein's animation "A Tale of Fairy Tales", by rhythm in the works of animator Jerzy Kucia, by mood and atmosphere of Andrey Tarkovsky’s films "The Mirror" and "Ivan's Childhood" (episodes of dreams). As for the plot construction, it was obvious for me, it could not be linear and sequential. I wished to create an intricate labyrinth, where memories have their own way of development, scenes and fragments cling to each other on some associative basis, where blur and sound guide the plot. In practical terms, the main difficulty for me was, perhaps, to imagine and find the environment I needed in a role of document. By genre, I would define my film as documentary fantasy.
DOKer 2021 — Doker Kids