ABOUT THE FESTIVAL

This brand new film festival in the small coastal town of Harstad in the Arcitc Northern Norway, is a great opportunity to experience engaging and groundbreaking film and moving images made in the Arctic and internationally, and to hear talks and take part in interesting discussions and workshops. We celebrate film - through past, present and future - and explore our society through all the artistic expressions of film. The festival has an exciting combination of conventional film and 'moving images'; video-art, experimental film, time-based installations and sculptures. It is all set in the spectacular Arctic scenery: fjords, mountains and stunning Northern Lights, and you can experience the historic but now very modern town of Harstad; its people, museum, gallery, cafés, restaurants, and boutique shops. 

The festival is based on the fact that the relatively short history of film is now starting to measure up to a considerable size, and that our identity is now intertwined by film, as we meet it through TV, the internet, the cinema, galleries, our Smartphones etc. We can now reflect several generations back in time using film archive. At the same time film reflects forward, through the exploration of artistic expressions using new technology, as Virtual Reality and video mapping. Film today is a very powerful artistic expression, as can be seen by the fact that in some countries, film directors and visual artists within the moving image are imprisoned because of their works. The festival therefore takes an explorative approach to the whole range of artistic expressions through film, throughout history, to see where our different stories fit in, especially the Arctic story which seldom is looked at. How are our stories expressed through film and seen in relation to the rest of the world? The combination of conventional film and moving images allows an exploration of the touchpoint between these, which again is a seldom explored territory.

The festival hopes to be an inspirational and engaging arena for the general public, and students and professionals within both the film and art world. Current topics in film and the arts will be discussed, with a different main topic every year, all set in a broader social, political and cultural context of the Arctic the surrounding world. This will be facilitated by showing films and moving images of high artistic quality, and a broad programme of discussions, talks and workshops.

Some of the films will be shown in a special screening room which allows food to be enjoyed as a sit down dinner, in connection with the film. This is the popular local concept 'KinOmatisk', which has been running for over two years in Harstad, and where food from the country that the film is from, is served in connection with the screening. The producer for KinOmatisk, is also the producer of this festival; Helene Hokland.

All the above will make Arctic Moving Image and Film Festival (AMIFF) unique among the other film festivals in Norway. The aim is to create interesting discussions and to be a source of inspiration. For those unfamiliar with people in the Arctic and how they live, visiting the film festival and seeing film from the Arctic will be an ideal way in.


The main topic of AMIFF 2016

The theme of the first festival is ‘Memory and Identity'. The relatively short history of film is now starting to measure up to a considerable size, and our identity is intertwined by film. Questions like ‘how does movements in film history reflect on movements in society?’, ‘how do we understand ourselves through film and moving images and its history?’ and ‘How are memories and identity treated in film and moving images?’ will be explored.

The theme ‘Memory and Identity’ is inspired by the strong focus currently on the use of archive material in moving images today. Topics for discussions that springs out of this are fact and fiction, power and powerlessness. Who gets their stories told? Can art function as democratization of archive material?