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Saborear Frutas Brasileiras

2011, 38 min.

Inhabitants from the city of Salvador, Brazil, show how to enjoy to the full their favorite fruits from the local markets. No spoons, forks or napkins in these performances. As they touch, smell, bite, scrape, suck, lick, slurp, chew and swallow, they pay homage to the sensuousness of the Brazilian people.

To see the film, click on the picture.


Knowing and not knowing at the foot of the mountain

2011, 9,39 min.

Two mountains tower over the village of Pé de Serra, deep in the Bahian interior. Some villagers claim to have seen strange balls of golden fire floating from one mountain top to the other. Some say it is the mae-de-ouro, the mother-of-the-gold, taking the gold from the mountain elsewhere to keep gold diggers at bay. Others, however, are not so sure.

To see the film, click on the picture.

The permeable body

2012, 2,13 min.

This video is a clip from a project-in-progress on the permeable boundary. In contrast to Western notions of the body as a closed container of the self, Brazilians conceive of the body as a porous vessel, which allows all kinds of spirits to move in and out of it. Spirit possesion is but one example of the Brazilian preference for permeable boundaries: the ideal of permeability pervades Brazilian culture as a whole.

To see the clip, click on the picture.


O Vento (the Wind)

2014, 4,00 min.

Dorival Caymmi’s song O Vento (The Wind) powerfully evokes how it is the wind that get’s everything into motion. Shot in Bahia (Ilha de Maré, Santo Amaro, Salvador)

Let’s go call the wind

Let’s go call the wind

The wind that hits the sail

The sail that moves the boat

The boat that carries the people

The people who catch the fish

The fish that brings the money

Curiman ê

Curiman lambaio


To see the clip, click on the picture


The Possibility of Spirits

2016, 71,00 min.

What is it that you film when you film a spirit?

I was brought up to believe that spirits do not exist: people who believed in them had somehow missed out on the true nature of things.

Years of research on Candomblé, an Afro-Brazilian religion, taught me the limits of such euro-centric definitions of the possible and the impossible. Refusing to choose between belief and disbelief, I embraced my not-knowing. I opted for being baffled.

"The Possibility of Spirits" is an essay film that seeks to keep the mystery of spirits center stage. Borrowing from surrealist montage techniques, the estrangement effect of Brechtian theatre and a Brazilian taste for the genuinely made-up, it invites viewers to let themselves be confused and -- in that confusion - consider the possibility of spirits.

Knots and Holes. An Essay Film on the Life of Nets.

2018, 73,00 min.

Nets are all around us. They materialize such principles as connecting, filtering and patterning. Which is why anthropologists might want to have a closer look at what people do with them and what they do with people.

In Bahia, Brazil, I sought out places where people work with nets. I recorded the conversations, emotions and sensations that occur in the presence of nets. I went on a fishing trip with Tico. I spoke with evangelicals, explaining the parable of the fishing net. I hung out with the boys from the Candomblé religion, who have their shirts made of lace. I shivered as I learned how lethal the introduction of a grid may be. I smiled when I heard how a fat man in tight jeans became a frolicking mermaid. And I never stopped wondering how the principles of filtering and patterning play themselves out in my own life – as a filmmaker, as an anthropologist, as a-gay-man-in-love.

Keeping alive the tension between openness and closure, knot and hole, grasping and caressing, this film invites its audiences to ponder the observation that all we humans ever do is to impose structures onto life and being, then to find out that neither life, nor being, follow our designs.