Apichatpong Weerasethakul – Primitive / Haus der Kunst, Munich / Interview

Apichatpong Weerasethakul is a Thai independent film director, screenwriter, and film producer. Weerasethakul’s narratives are based on myths and memories. Several of his films received international prizes such as the jury prize at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival for his feature film Tropical Malady.

Haus der Kunst in Munich, Germany presents Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s current project Primitive. Primitive, which the Haus der Kunst co-produced, combines the mediums film and installation: viewers explore the work in their own way and according to their own timing. In this video by Gürsoy Dogtas, Apichatpong Weerasethakul talks about his new project.

For Primitive, the artist travelled to the northeast of Thailand – an area where inhabitants’ lives are dominated by animist beliefs and where the belief of souls migrating between people, plants, animals and ghosts still exists. Primitive is a multi-part project dealing with reincarnation and transformation. One of the villages near the border to Laos is the focus: with its suppressed and forgotten history Nabua reappears symbolically. Much like earlier films by the artist, Primitive shifts between documentation and fiction, and is characterised by quiet settings and great simplicity: the camera moves slowly across a landscape flooded by the phenomenon of a ghostly light, it approaches hills where lights dance, the terrain is gently adjusted and a tree bursts into flames by itself.

Primitive was commissioned by Haus der Kunst, Munich; Fact, Liverpool; Animate Projects, London; and produced by Illuminations Films, London, and Kick The Machine Films, Bangkok.

Apichatpong Weerasethakul, was born July 16, 1970 in Bangkok, Thailand.

The exhibition Apichatpong Weerasethakul: Primitive at Haus der Kunst runs until May 24, 2009. Video by Gürsoy Dogtas. Haus der Kunst, April 4, 2009.

> Right-click (Mac: ctrl-click) this link to download Quicktime video file.

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