War is the Father of all and of all is king;
some he makes Gods and some Men,
some he makes slaves and some free.
Eraclito, Fr. 53 (Diels – Kranz)
Fragment 53 is a feature-length documentary film on war considered in its necessary and universal dimension, faced both as an actual and archetypical event.
The phenomenon has been investigated on the field in Liberia, a country of peculiar, radical and unsettled conflicts, presenting sceneries, personalities and events ascribable to the essential warfare that the authors aim to evoke.
The film develops through a set of first-person accounts selected from a wider amount of interviews with eminent warriors, generals and warlords collected in Liberia between 2011 and 2014.
Seven self-contained portraits are presented one after the other, introduced by a voice-off statement from the authors and followed by an epilogue composed by nocturnal images on a set of quotations from former General Philip Wlue’s vision of the world.
Whereas the images flowing over the statement at the beginning of the film are mostly presented as objective plans, imposing a distance between the camera and the subjects, the first person accounts of the warriors are collected and portrayed from a very close angle and position.
Through a bare and restless use of a hand camera insisting on their bodies and faces, this approach maintains a continuous tightness between these fighters’ accounts and the eye of the camera.
Any personal and historical context is excluded from their tales in order to elevate them to a wider and impersonal dimension.
This concept leads also the editing of the film that shows a series of isolated, self sufficient and not intercomunicating portraits built through jump cuts and not naturalistic close-up frames.
CARLO GABRIELE TRIBBIOLI
A Production of
FEDERICA SCHIAVO GALLERY
CENTRE D’ART CONTEMPORAIN GENÈVE / BIM 2014
Video Post Production
CARLOS IBANEZ DIAZ
Additional Audio Mix
Audio Post Production
HEAD - GENÈVE
Still Images Editing
FEDERICO M. TRIBBIOLI
MARIA TERESA ZINGARELLO
ROBERT K. KOLLIE
Assistant Location Manager
ANTHONY R. WASHINGTON