“One”, A Letter to Eternity
Migration is at the heart of civilisation and the cycle of perpetual and eternal change and the ‘condition humaine’. Today’s refugees are the new settlers: Carriers of Hope. “One”, A Letter to Eternity, both film and sculpture as well spatial installation, is a poetic quest and exploration of compassion across the Mediterranean Sea. A love letter to diversity in an eternal arena of mankind in perpetual movement, where habitants of the Mediterranean co-create a lasting imprint, a ‘living’ sculpture and a vivid blueprint for eternity.
Two-way flow of exile and belonging, “One”, A Letter to Eternity, reflects a lyrical expression of life, vividly invoking the magnificent dynamic feeling with which the universe incessantly vibrates. In the nation states of the Mediterranean basin and the hinterlands, an entangling ‘Odyssean’ gaze creates yet another tale of Land peoples and Sea peoples, journeying since centuries in a quest for eternity. A cartography of concealing, unveiling, nurturing, forgetting, remembering, healing and letting go. Going through fierce transformations and turmoil, living in present times, evoked and told by locals, be they heroic or tragic, living along the Phoenicians’ historic maritime route.
Inspired by Greek tragedy, archaeology and the Phoenicians’ ancient maritime routes, connecting the Levant to South-East Europe and North-Africa, the idea and research took shape during a three month artist-in-residence at Ashkal Alwan, from March 1st – June 1st 2016, in affiliation with the Mondriaan Fund in The Netherlands.
October 2019 the Netherlands Film Fund allocated a startsubsidy for the first development phase of the hybrid filmproject “One”, A Letter to Eternity, intending to be developed and realized during the forthcoming years (2021-22-23).
Stills filmrushes, a first study ‘ A Prelude’ for ‘A Letter to Eternity’ (2016, Lebanon). Directed by Ilse Frech. Cinematography and Camera: Talal Khoury and Ilse Frech. Music: Tony Elieh and Sharif Sehnaoui.
With special thanks to Elwan, Tony alias ‘Cloudly’ and his friends, Sarah Nahas and Mahmoud Merjan in Beirut, and many dear others with whom I collaborated in order to research and to create these first filmrushes.
Stills filmrushes, study for ‘A Letter to Eternity’ (2018, Tunisia). Directed by Ilse Frech. Cinematography and Camera: Ilse Frech. Cast: Najwa Miled. Poetry: Samir Farhani.