Marina Mottin

Marina Mottin

Jury Member 2022

Marina Mottin has developed her expertise in art and culture as co-artistic director, head of the film department and member of the selection committee of various international festivals, specialising in the cinema of Africa, Latin America and Asia. She was program advisor for the Venice Film Festival, where she worked from 1987 to 2007 holding different positions, including her role as advisor for films from Africa and the Middle East between 2006 and 2007.

Marina Mottin has curated several exhibitions and retrospectives, contributing to the rediscovery and international recognition of forgotten or unconventional authors, artists and filmmakers. Each retrospective has implied an active search for lost prints and has often led to their restoration.

Marina Mottin’s work has involved coordinating with film archives, private collectors and scholars to secure the rare and often unique prints required by the programmes. The search has led to the discovery of a copy of The Dislocation of Amber (1975), a film by Sudanese director and visual artist Hussein Shariffe, shot in the ruins of what was once the thriving port of Suakin, or the rediscovery of the lyrical film about the destruction of Cape Town’s District Six district Dear Grand Father, Your Left Foot Is Missing (1985) by South African director Ahmed Yunus.

In 2004, for the Festival International de Films de Fribourg, she curated the retrospective Cinemas d’Asie centrale and the photographic exhibition L’Ouzbékistan de Max Penson, 1926 – 1948, after selecting materials from state and private archives in the region.

On the occasion of 1000 Eyes, the International Film and Arts Festival of Trieste, she curated the Anno Uno Award, dedicated to the Brazilian experimental actress Helena Ignez, after having realised in 2006 La femme du bandit – Hommage à Helena Ignez, the first retrospective of all her films at the Fribourg Festival. This retrospective will pave the way in the following years and up to the present to bring back to the screens a period of Brazilian cinema that had been completely ignored and to reveal the surprising career of one of the most important actresses in the world.

Marina Mottin has also curated art exhibitions, including Aquarium, a monumental sound installation resulting from the collaboration between the Soviet dissident artist Vladimir Shabalin and the musician Diamanda Galás, set up in Basel in 2011 and inspired by the millions of barrels of oil dumped in the Gulf of Mexico after the accident on the BP oil rig, and consisting of three huge stone slabs with over a hundred fossil fish “swimming” on them.

In 2013, she curated the exhibition Through the Horizon, in memory of her friend and Swiss artist Leta Peer, in the crypt of the Leonhardskirche where she sought to highlight the tension created by the concept of the horizon, the boundary between heaven and earth, visible but never attainable.

Since 2011, she has been the head of VIP Europe relations and representative of African countries at Art Basel, in charge of art collectors from both continents.


Selected by Marina Mottin:

O Pátio (1959)
Director: Glauber Rocha
Brazil, 11′
This is Glauber’s first film, an 11-minute short film shot in Bahia. On a tiled terrace having the shape of a chessboard, a boy and a girl. These two characters evolve slowly: they touch each other, roll on the ground, move away, look at each other. Beautiful shots of hands and faces alternate with shots of tropical vegetation and the sea. Already in this first film, we can discern some specific traits of the filmmaker: strong presence of nature, handling space and framing. The shots explore the graphism of the chess pattern and there is dissonant music by Pierre Henry and Pierre Shaeffer.