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Artist-focused documentary film fest returns to Boulder | Colorado Arts and Sciences Magazine

Mimesis Documentary Festival is described as an immersive theatrical and virtual slate of movies, workshops and more with artists, producers and scholars from around the world


An artist-focused, community-oriented documentary film festival that is committed to “showcasing the infinite potential of nonfiction media” returns to Boulder and the university Aug. 2-7.

Tickets and the provisional program for the third annual Mimesis Documentary Festival, described as an immersive theatrical and virtual slate of movies, workshops and more with artists, producers and scholars from around the world, are available at their website.

Festival events will occur at Boulder’s Dairy Arts Center and the University of Colorado Boulder’s B2 Center for Media, Arts, and Performance. The events will include “screenings, installation-based documentary art pieces, workshops and conversations with some of the most dynamic voices in documentary media exploring contemporary international culture,” the festival’s organizers state.

The festival’s opening night features Emma Baiada and Nicolas Snyder’s debut film Song of Salt (2022, USA) as well as screenings and a masterclass with Artist-in-Focus Iva Radivojević.

At the top of the page: A still from the film, Song of Salt, which will have a showing on the festival’s opening night. Above: Iva Radivojević, the event’s artist-in-focus, will be hosting a screening and masterclass opening night.

Set in an isolated mining town on the outskirts of Death Valley, Song of Salt glimpses into the struggles and celebrations within a tight-knit community as its residents, suspended between the past and the future, face the present realities of an eroding economy.

A microcosm of contemporary American rurality, Trona, California, demonstrates the “complexities, hardships and small beauties that are revealed when we look beyond prevailing stereotypes,” a summary says, adding: “Oscillating between dramatic stillness and wild freedom, patient observation and intimate immersion, the documentary takes us on an engaging and dignified exploration of what it means to be both forgotten and free.”

Artist-in-Focus Iva Radivojević was born in Belgrade and spent her early years in Yugoslavia and Cyprus. She is an artist and filmmaker who currently divides her time between subarctic Alaska, Brooklyn and Lesbos.

Radivojević’s films have screened at the New York Film Festival, New Directors/New Films, Rotterdam IFF, CPH:DOX, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival, DocLisboa, and Museum of Modern Art (NYC), and were commissioned by ARTE La Lucarne and Field of Vision. She is the recipient of the Sundance Art of Non-Fiction Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship, NYFA Fellowship, and Princess Grace Special Project Award and Film Fellowship.

Altogether, the Mimesis Documentary Festival highlights more than 60 projects selected from open submissions in traditional, ethnographic, docufiction, experimental, documentary arts and emerging or student categories.

While special events and artist-in-focus programs will be presented in-person only at the Dairy Center or B2 Center, both in-person and virtual viewing options are available for most programming.

The 2022 Mimesis Documentary Festival is a nonprofit project of CU Boulder’s Center for Documentary and Ethnographic Media to help “secure and promote Colorado’s place in a local, regional and international community of documentary creators and scholars.”

The festival is committed to programming 80% of projects from open submissions, offering complimentary virtual screening passes to all artists, and waiving submission and entry fees for CU Boulder students.

The Mimesis Documentary Festival is supported by contributions from CU Boulder’s College of Media, Communication and Information, its Departments of Anthropology and Critical Media Practices, the Research and Innovation Office and by festival partners and individual donors.

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