(c) Icarus Films

THE NINE MUSES (United Kingdom, 2011, 94 min.)

Capturing the experience of African and Irish immigrants to Britain in the decades after World War II, this cine-poem is a layered, poignant meditation on human mass migration and its relationship to land use and culture. Combining footage of isolated places and rarely traveled roads, readings from classic texts by Homer, Dante and T. S. Eliot with the music of Arvo Pärt and India’s Gundecha Brothers, this experimental film offers an evocative journey through myth and environment, a self-described “Proustian attempt to suggest the idea of migration.” Found footage of steamship arrivals, tenement neighborhoods and angry native backlash is intercut with high-definition video shot in the snowy remotes of contemporary Alaska. Recurring images of bleak vistas traversed by faceless, parka-clad figures suggests a poetic corollary to how England might have felt to new arrivals: very cold, very lonely and very white. Directed by John Akomfrah.

Shown with SACK BARROW

Ticket/Reservation Info:

FREE. No reservations required.

National Gallery of Art, East Building Auditorium, Fourth St. & Constitution Ave., NW

(Metro: Archives/ Navy Memorial/ Penn Quarter, 7th St. exit.)

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Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital