Download the Festival Programme for Bern 28 Sept-1 Oct:
Instagram: @ethno_kino & @ethnokinofestival
Dedicated to visionaries and pioneering storytellers across the globe, EthnoKino is an international action community of practice, working towards systemic change through the power of authentic and meaningful storytelling. Our catalytic home cinema of the commons and commoning film practices intend to co-create a nourishing influential mov(i)ement for societal cohesion, by enacting integral transformation for deep planetary impact through the establishment of a gift economy of solidarity and circularity.
EthnoKino started as a student collective in 2017, facilitating transformative encounters between science, cinema and society. Ever since EthnoKino organized expanded learning occasions at the intersections of a historically meaningful cultural hub, an occupied house Kino in der Reitschule and an international educational hub University of Bern. We explored numerous themes around Belonging, Asymmetries, Ancient Futures, Transactive Dialogues, Roads/Routes and many more.
Establishing ourselves as a legal association in 2020 with co-founding members we got EthnoKino to become an accredited teaching student assistant course at the Walter Benjamin Kolleg with (4PP) Credits till 2023. Over the past five years, EthnoKino has overseen an impact in pedagogical demands at the university we work with, improving aspects from student welfare, to participatory methods of decolonising scholarly discourses, practicing of anticapitalist values, the gift economy, sustainability and circulatory economies from the grassroots up.
Today, Ethnokino Association is run by established Bern based anthropologists, experts and storytellers across the world. We bring the EthnoKino Film Festival, that screens trailblazing and award winning films facilitating multimodal training and a cinema based pedagogy that is now scaling up for super diverse backgrounds around the world through the introduction of the Doc Impact Lab for Mov(i)ement Fellows that makes use of our social innovative Spaces.
EthnoKino has become an internationally recognised visual anthropology screening programme where the stories from the Global South meet the audience in the Global North, we expect this encounter to have a transformative impact for both sides. With an ever growing network of Partners and Community forming its current association and governance we are constantly evolving and learning from the challenges of putting up an ambitious visionary project through humble resources.
Since 2020, EthnoKino has been hosted by the Institute of Geography’s Media Lab and Animating the Commons applied research initiative partnering with the University of Oxford. Aside from our various other partnering organizations and networks supporting us with various collaborations and in-kind contributions, our current major sponsors are the Burgergemeinde, City of Bern and the Canton of Bern.
In our most recent Ethno Kino Film Festival (2023) we designated our theme to be "resilient". We have been particularly interested in films and discussions around exploring how human beings around the world interpret and manifest resilience. The various ways they resist, disobey and practice strength and hope in the face of adversity, challenges and injustices. In a world of immense interactions and global technological advancements, accompanied by unprecedented movements, colonialism, climate change, war and conflicts, we will look into inspiring stories addressing the world’s biggest problems and those providing solutions to planetary challenges. From forcefully displaced populations to those who are born strangers to their own communities, those change-makers who transform and transcend the societies they are part of; through social initiatives, educational projects, co-creative engagements of art and poetry, and other interventions, we explore what resilience means in its full humanity and wholeness.
Our aim is to explore and publicize critical scholarly and artistic perspectives of various life views and cosmologies through filmic means and, by doing so, to actively contribute to social cohesion, diversity, inclusivity and emancipation within Swiss society and beyond. Our objective is to visibilise the power of independent and authentic storytelling to shift behavior and catalyze action.
Our methodology is to support independent and transformative stories to be written, screened and shared. We believe that independent and authentic storytelling builds solidarity and engages the audience meaningfully as it broadens minds and horizons. We seek to amplify the power of stories by facilitating funding, collaboration and impactful outreach. We support independent and transformative stories to be written, screened and shared to shift behavior and catalyze action.
Up until our establishment we have screened more than 250 films and reached out to thousands of audiences. We have given 20 awards of recognition for outstanding filmmakers. We have hosted over 80 valuable guests, including award-winning documentary filmmakers, proclaimed thought leaders and inspiring visionaries.
What is new?
Between 2023-2024, our film festival will take place internationally: in Berlin (LichtBlick Kino 2-6 December) , in Istanbul (with in kind contributions in collaboration with Beyoglu Municipality during 18-22 December) and in Mexico City (ENAH National School of Anthropology and History (13-17 Nov) and a possibility to do in Marrakech at the (ISE) International Society for Ethnobiology Congress (in 15-19 May 2024 ).
Doc Impact Lab for Mov(i)ement Fellows
In practice, the Doc Impact Lab will launch itself for the first time in 2023 and start being implemented by January 2024. Mov(i)ement fellows will be made part of a training programme that is tailored made for their story needs, conceived, designed and managed collaboratively with Global Diversity Foundation and University of Bern’s Animating the Commons applied research initiative.
Mov(i)ement fellowship targets participants as changemakers producing content that includes stories speaking of innovative solutions and best practices that communities at the frontline have used for millennia facing past atrocities that are still impacting their lives and societies.
We will have about 20 project beneficiaries as Mov(i)ement Fellows from super diverse backgrounds joining from across the world (Global North Including Switzerland and widely the Global South) who are particularly interested in tackling issues on remembrances, politics of memory, colonial legacies and democracy.
A pool of top-notch mentors will be coordinated to guide the cohort. As a result of the online training programme (6 months) and in person meetings at a special retreat designed for them in the Swiss Alps and at the EthnoKino film festivals , we expect the fellows to produce short film, feature films, multimodal media or music compositions.Their work will be disseminated through our film festivals worldwide in Bern, Berlin, Istanbul,Mexico City, Marrakech, Pune (reach out of 5000 people and beyond).Our fellows will have the chance to meet the audience in person during engaging Q&As, roundtables and vision talks.
Training duration is for 6 months after meeting at the film festival, with an in-person 5 days retreat in Switzerland and in the Mediterranean. Mentors are outstanding professionals and talented experts who will support Swiss and International students in communicating their research, applied social action projects and community engagements through creative storytelling in the forms of doc films and with accompanying multimodal media and impact campaigns.