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Mishkin Gallery: Critical Ecology on Film | Apichatpong Weerasethakul in conversation with Mishkin Gallery Director/Curator Alaina Claire Feldman
Start Date: 4/29/2021Start Time: 1:00 PM
End Date: 4/29/2021End Time: 2:00 PM
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Event Description:

Thursday, April 29


Cactus River (Khong Lang Nam)

Apichatpong Weerasethakul in conversation with Mishkin Gallery Director/Curator Alaina Claire Feldman

video, no sound, 10:09 minutes, 2012


World renowned artist and filmmaker Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Cactus River (Khong Lang Nam) is a short experimental film starring his long-time collaborator Jenjira Pongpas. Weerasethakul’s films are often marked by interplays between organic, natural time and measured cinematic time while drawing from Buddhist narrative structures as well as science fiction. The title of this work is a contradiction evoking a river full of desert plants, but also a very real future for the Mekong due to upstream constructions of Chinese dams. As water levels continue to fall, Jenjira leads a new life after marrying a retired American soldier and changes her name to Nach, also meaning “river.” Both the Mekong and Nach are changing, along with the memories of who and what they once were. 

Apichatpong Weerasethakul is a Thai independent film director, screenwriter, and film producer. Working outside the strict confines of the Thai film studio system, Weerasethakul has directed ten features and dozens of short films. He has won the Un Certain Regard top prize, Jury Prize, and Palm d’Or at the Cannes International Film Festival as well as numerous other awards such as the Principal Prince Claus Award and the Artes Mundi Prize.

Alaina Claire Feldman is the Director/Curator of the Mishkin Gallery and Professor in Baruch’s Arts Administration MA program. She was the Managing Editor of Apichatpong Weerasethskul: Serenity of Madness in 2016 and produced the artist’s traveling retrospective of the same title (curated by Gridthiya Gaweewong) for Independent Curators International (ICI).


Some changes in the environment are easy to see while others are more covert. Through the work of four international artists/artist collectives, the Critical Ecology on Film program will expose and tackle questions regarding ecological crises in relation to climate change, inter-species communication, nuclear power, and privatization of the commons. Artists will join professors from across the Weissman School of Arts and Sciences to connect visual culture and the humanities in transdisciplinary conversations that concern the entanglement of politics and our contemporary ecologies. Each film will be screened followed by a conversation. Critical Ecology on Film takes place on Zoom and is free and open to the public.

Cactus River film still

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