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Documenta Madrid

Documenta Madrid is an international film festival dedicated exclusively to documentary film. Documenta is a continuously evolving festival and aspires to improve year after year as a showcase for the best in international documentary film, one which brings us closer to both the classics as well as the latest offerings in the genre. 



DOCUMENTA 10 kicks off on May 7th with the best in international documentary film

The City of Madrid's Department of the Arts is organizing the 7th International Documentary Festival DOCUMENTA MADRID 10, to be held from May 7th through the 16th. The rise in the number of films submitted to participate in the Competitive Sections (1153 films this year) and the number of countries from which they have come (92 different countries) once again bear witness to DOCUMENTA MADRID's strength as the most highly regarded festival internationally of all the competitions in the Community of Madrid.  

 In line with these positive figures, the festival is furthering its commitment to this year's Competitive Sections, made up for the second consecutive year, of 87 films making their premiere in Spain and competing for awards in four official categories, the prize-winnings of which total 73,000 Euros.   In addition, three new venues have been added, in addition to Matadero Madrid: Casa Asia, the Reina Sofia National Art Museum, the Palafox Cinema, the Spanish-Moroccan Center and the San Juan Bautista Cultural Center. Along with these, the public will be able to enjoy the festival programming in all the usual places: Princesa Cinemas, the Círculo de Bellas Artes Cinema-Studio, Filmoteca Española (Film Archives), Academia de Cine, Casa Árabe, the Goethe Institute, the French Institute and Casa América. One of the main attractions for the public, in addition to the interesting program, is that most of the activities are free of charge, and the rest have discount prices.  

In addition, the festival will, for the second consecutive year, have as its Matron of Honor, HRH Princess Leticia. In addition to its robust Official Section (this year made up of 87 films), DOCUMENTA MADRID 10 has a wide-spanning Informative Section made up of several film series:  

Tribute to the filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin: In recreating her childhood experiences on a reserve in the Abenaki nation, Obomsawin became one of her country's pioneering film directors in the 1970s, with the help of the prestigious National Film Board of Canada (NFB).  

Wang Bing Retrospective: His particular filmography combines different trends in recent Chinese documentary film, in addition to having an interactive element and civic commitment.  

Peter Hutton Retrospective and Master Class: the festival will be offering the most exhaustive representation of this filmmaker's work ever shown in Europe. In addition, this unique portrait artist of cities and landscapes will be giving a master class on May 14th at 12 noon in the Círculo de Bellas Artes Cinema-Studio.  

USA Independents: the incisive and veteran Joseph Strick and the visionary Ben Russell complete the circle with Hutton in this series devoted to contemporary American filmmakers who have revolutionized the principles of documentary filmmaking.  

Other Parallel Sections worth noting this year include:  

Latin American Film: this section brings together Different Voices in Colombian Documentary Film and offers a thought-provoking master class by the Mexican editor Valentina Leduc Navarro on Wednesday, May 12th at 7:40 pm in Casa América.  

Arabic Film: For the fourth consecutive year, the Casa Árabe is opening its doors to the festival with a program reflecting the latest in contemporary Arabic documentary film.  

Documenta Space Conquest: offers a look at the space race from its beginnings, shedding light on some of its darker moments, beyond the scientific advancements for peace and the expansion of the humankind's frontiers.    

Proper Names: the creator of the "river films" Wang Bing, the spokesman for Armenian reality Harutyun Khachatryan, and the filmmaker / specialist in local customs Tommaso Cotronei are three featured artists who all share a commitment to unique aesthetic and narrative works.   Some of the most notable parallel activities also include:


The release of the eighth volume in the Documenta Texts collection of books published by the festival in collaboration with the 8½ bookshop.

Open House: Home movies and the Contemporary Recycling Thereof has a look at how this format serves as a visual memory bank, the way it inevitably takes on greater nostalgia over time and the influence it has had on present-day avant-garde filmmakers.


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