2017 is well into its final quarter, but for Chris a new adventure begins in a few weeks as he commences a Ph.D. at the University of the Sunshine Coast. This is all about a documentary project, and the opportunity to enter the debate over truth in the art of documentary.
Noosa Shire, where we live at the northern most point of Australia’s Sunshine Coast, is a designated UNESCO Man and Biosphere region – under the management of Noosa Shire Council. It is one of 669 such projects world wide, about which no documentary has ever been made. In almost 50 years! But who knows what the Man and Biosphere projects are, and what they accomplish? Watch this space as we develop a website to answer that question as we log the progress of Chris’s Ph.D. project: working title “Noosa’s Bio.”
It’s appropriate during the 500th anniversary of protestant Christianity to release to universities and colleges, seminaries and churches the documentary, BEYOND EMPIRES as a streaming or downloadable file on Vimeo’s VoD service.
With Dr Daniel Jeyaraj in Tranquebar during filming, August 2010
BEYOND EMPIRES tells the story of a 23 year old German, sent by the Danish King to his trading port of Tranquebar on the south east coast of India in 1706. He died age 36 under the persecution of the Danish trading company and an official on the King’s mission board. True. Yet, the Indian federal government and state of Tamil Nadu promulgated a week of celebrating his life in July of 2006 – the 300th anniversary of his arrival in India. Even releasing a postage stamp in his honour.
Why would India regard the first protestant missionary to their shores as a cultural hero? And why is his name mostly erased from western memory.
Beyond Empires Trailer 1:53 mins
Amanda Cole has brought to the stage a remarkable legacy left by Hildegard of Bingen especially in her music and the advances she achieved for the role of women in the 12th century Catholic church. Her performance and that of narrator Jo Kadlecek brings a haunting reminder to the contemporary world that courage with art is a necessary part of maintaining the freedoms we can so easily take for granted.
Ms. Cole’s mezzo soprano performance is a dazzling reminder of the roots of western musical forms as is her mastery of the medieval stringed instruments that Hildegard preferred. The performance takes place on a simple stage adorned with the plant pigment art on hemp canvas of Anne Harris, which captures St. Hildegard’s love of nature, and its many mysteries.
When Roland Lowther contacted me from Brisbane in March, I was delighted to be able to assist him by producing the book trailer below for what is the beginning of a three book series. It took a morning to shoot using two cameras, and 16 hours to edit, finesse, and output to web.
If you or an author you know are looking for a web video to promote a book or other creative project – call me on my Australian Mobile # +61 456 732 828 – Chris Gilbert – LAMP POST MEDIA
Storytelling is a process of discovery, for you and the subject matter. Here are four essential exercises for helping you identify stories that you are uniquely wired to tell:
1. “Art is a corner of nature seen through a temperament,” says Michael Rabiger in his book, “Directing the Documentary.” Artists as story tellers, must pay attention to themselves first, what moves them and motivates them for good or ill. Continue reading
Chris’s documentary subtitled, Why India celebrates Bartholomaeus Ziegenbalg, was featured at the launch of a new museum in Tharangambadi, in the state of Tamil Nadu on Friday, August 14, 2015. The Consul Generals of Germany and Denmark joined Indian leaders at the event to mark the beginning of a collaborative project, which preserves the revered 150 year legacy of the Halle-Danish mission Ziegenbalg began in 1706.
The Francke Foundation from Halle in Germany initiated the event and screening with the intention of returning to India many of the historic records and artifacts pertaining to the history of Tamil life and culture that have been in the foundation’s archives for more than 300 years. Continue reading
On a trip last week to Sydney we took in the Caryl Churchill play “Love and Information” at the Sydney Theatre Company. Seven fine actors played 100 characters in almost 70 vignettes during the 105 minute performance. And the issue the playwright, director and actors explored? How we relate to one another and process life in an age flooding us with information, distracting our attentions, but providing very little meaning. Good art critiques culture, and helps us rise to the precious elements of life despite the gravitational pull into the meaningless. Continue reading