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All the Dreams We Dream

Hand-drawn animation

21 minutes

2017 - 2020

Kadyrkhanova Asel All the dreams installation view rendering.jpg

The hand-drawn animation film has derived from my research into (non-) memory of the Kazakh famine, 1930 - 1933. Caused by the Soviet policies of collectivisation, the famine was a "limit event", or an event of such extremity that it shattered the very foundations of Kazakh nomadic society, making it easier to 'sovietise' the region.

I began by drawing by hand, responding to memoirs of survivors, through which process I came to make a 21-minute long film. The film is structured like a non-linear oneiric narrative. It reworks two memoirs by Kazakh poet Gafu Kairbekov on encounters with famine victims. It studies the idea of empathy and fear, asking how we remember the catastrophic event and those who perished. What remains in the collective memory when evidence is erased and stories are silenced?

It focuses on the subtle boundary between animal and human, and between human and non-human, asking how stories of violence and pain should be told so that we can tolerate them.

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asel kadyrkhanova all_the_dreams_we_dream 2020
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Kadyrkhanova_ All the Dreams We Dream yurt 2020
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Animating the transformation of a human body into a yurt.

Assel Kadyrkhanova Asel All_the_dreams_we_dream Animation
Assel Kadyrkhanova Asel All_the_dreams_we_dream 2 Animation
Assel Kadyrkhanova Asel All_the_dreams_we_dream 3 Animation
Assel Kadyrkhanova Asel All_the_dreams_we_dream 4 Animation

Some drawings from the sequence of a metamorphosis.

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