The festival celebrates women's art across time and borders, presenting renowned artists alongside those who are just starting out. The programme is diverse, putting women's art in a range of contexts and innovative perspectives, promoting its progress and breaking stereotypes. The event features a number of concerts, performances, film screenings and exhibitions...
Still frame: "Pepperminta", dir. Pipilotta Rist: press materials
The festival celebrates women's art across time and borders, presenting renowned artists alongside those who are just starting out. The programme is diverse, putting women's art in a range of contexts and innovative perspectives
"No Women No Art" is a year-round initiative promoting women in art and culture run by the association of the same name, created because of the need to make women's values and achievements heard and to bring back valuable works of previous years. Its activity helps break unfavourable stereotypes that deem women's work to be banal or sentimental. The international festival crowns the year's achievements.
The association promotes women's art via artistic events: concerts, performances, film screenings and exhibitions. The bounds of art are pushed and new ways of expression are explored. The event is kicked off with a major cinematic event - Shirin Neshat's "Women Without Men" on November 19.
This is Neshat's feature debut, based on the novel by Shahrnoush Parsipour, which is banned in Iran. The film raises the problem of different shades of femininity of Iranian women, but not seen from the local perspective, but external -through the eyes of Iranian feminism multimedia artist many years living abroad. She avoids excessive criticism and remains objective in assessments, and even expresses admiration of the artistic elements of Iranian architecture and culture, and charming beauty of feminine attire. Because of the many controversies that arose around Iran Shahrnoush Parsipour and Shirin Neshat the creation of the film was not possible in their homeland. So the film was made in Casablanca, where not only city landscapes which are reminiscent of Tehran were found, but also pictures of pristine and unspoilt nature. The film was presented at numerous festivals, won the Golden Lion in the category of "Best Director" and the UNICEF Award at the International Film Festival in Venice (2009).
The festival also features Sally Potter's "Pepperminta", starring Polish actress Ewelina Guzik. In the film, seven days, fourteen protagonists, a student and his website. An accident, a murder and a crisis in the New York world of fashion. Broken dreams, a conflict and secret confessions: in short, a tragicomedy about the effects of globalization in the age of informatisation. Sally Potter is one of the most well-known directors in the world. She is engaged in the production of feature films and documentaries.
Theatre is another focus of the event, with the TERAZ POLIŻ Artistic Group putting on "A Dress with a Hole" / "Sukienka z dziurką". This is a socially-committed ensemble that has always been made up entirely of women. The group currently consists of directors: Ula Kijak and MartaOgrodzińska, and actresses: Dorota Glac, Marta Jalowska, Adrianna Kornecka, Dominika Strojek and Kamila Blanka Worbiej. TERAZ POLIŻ, established in 2008 in Warsaw, aims to address the issues of contemporary "womanhood" in all its possible aspects and contexts. The group's latest project, a light-hearted and nearly cabaret-like performance, exposes female sexuality through exotic eroticism and the use of costume. It is rooted in a broad context of prostitution, i.e. sexuality treated as commodity.
Marta Górnicka and THE CHORUS OF WOMEN is an innovative tragic choir of women of different age and profession. It questions the linguistic cliché and exposes language in its ideological dimension; it speaks with the language of the excluded texts. The script is based on such texts of culture as fragment's of Sophocles' Antigone, works of Barthes, Foucault, Simone de Beavoir, phrases from every-day language, advertising slogans, recipes, or quotes from films and fairy tales. Marta Górnicka is a director and a vocalist. She graduated from The Directing Department at Alexander Zelwerowicz State Theatre Academy and Fryderyk Chopin School of Music in Warsaw.
The event also features discussions and lectures, eco workshops, book launches and concerts, such as the show from Monika Enterprise, featuring Golden Disko Ship, Jasmina Maschina and Tusia Beridze. Monika Enterprises has created a small, yet exclusive international network and it is currently considered as one of the best labels in Berlin. Barbara Morgenstern also makes an appearance at the concert.
Joanna Stankiewicz is the director of the initiative and an activist for pro-female undertakings and eco-friendly projects. For more information on "No Women, No Art", see www.nowomen-noart.pl