Open City Documentary Festival

World Records: Artificial Orders

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Festival Hub - Studio

What’s so good about authenticity? After all, appeals to the “natural” and “authentic” are often used to bolster the ranks of white supremacists, justify state repression of gender and sexual rights, and depict immigrants as invaders. In this context, should the task of documentary be to remain faithful to representing social worlds with realistic clarity, or, can documentary acknowledge the artifice of our worlds in order to envision and invent more democratic forms of imagination and institution building? Is it time to celebrate the artificial instead? In this panel, filmmakers, programmers, and critics engage the term artificial in the context of their own practice, arguing for and against documentary approaches that embrace this vexed term.

This session will be hosted by Jason Fox (Editor of World Records) and the panel will include Erika Balsom, Tabitha Jackson and Priya Sen (Yeh Freedom Life). Published by UnionDocs Center for Documentary Art, World Records brings together the voices of scholars, critics, makers, and curators who offer new and complex perspectives on documentary to challenge and extend its margins.