by Seymour Sanchez
Award-winning filmmaker Richard Soriano Legaspi’s first documentary Ang Walang Kapagurang Paglalakbay ng Pulang Maleta (The Untiring Journey of the Red Suitcase) will have public screenings in selected venues in Italy and Germany from this month until June.
Produced by Red Room Media Productions and Cine Totoo with the support of Università delle Idee and ILLY – Italy, the film tells the remarkable stories of inspiration of a close-knit Filipino community in the town of Biella, Italy and how they create a community where the culture of both worlds can be freely woven together.
Last May 1, during the International Labor Day celebration, the Red Suitcase became part of a contemporary art exhibition entitled Exploring Resilience at MILA Kunstgalerie in Berlin. It will then travel to Ambasciata d’Italia for exhibition under the program Embodied Resilience II, curated by PeninsulaLab, Wollinerstrasse, starting May 18, also in Berlin.
The film will go back to Biella, Italy on June 6 for a public screening at Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto. This will be an opportunity for Legaspi, a 2013 UNESCO Laureate Artist and alumnus of Università delle Idee, to present his works in one of Europe’s famous contemporary art institutions. The foundation was instituted in 1998 as a concrete action of the Progetto Arte Manifesto where the artist Michelangelo Pistoletto proposed a new role for the artist – that of placing art in direct interaction with all the areas of human activity which forms society.
“It is not easy to shoot a documentary in a foreign land alone but like the film’s prevailing message that each fabric of wool has been trying to weave together the culture, history and people of Biella, including the Filipino workers and their families who continuously toil and embrace Italy, I was able to manage and finish it with the help of other people,” Legaspi said.
Legaspi started shooting the documentary in 2013 using a small camera and he returned to Italy in 2014 to continue documenting the journey of Filipinos in Biella. “They sort of took care of me and embraced my presence for three consecutive years. Technically I was alone filming but the Filipino community in Biella helped me complete this project. This is a clear example of a participatory and community art project which I am very proud of,” he explained.
The director is behind award-winning films like Paano Ko Sasabihin? starring Enchong Dee and Erich Gonzales, which won the Special Jury Prize, Audience Award and Best in Editing at the 2009 Cinema One Originals and was a finalist at the Babel Film Festival in Italy. He is also the director and writer of Manenaya, Special Jury Prize winner at the Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival and the opening film of the Asiatica Film Mediale in Rome in 2012, and Ambulancia, which earned the Miglior Montaggio Award at the San Gio Film Festival in Italy and was a finalist at the Dubai International Film Festival (DIFF), United Arab Emirates.
“Pipo,” a short film starring veteran actor Lou Veloso, Chanel Latorre, and Maliksi Morales, will compete in the upcoming Children’s International Film Festival, United Arab Emirates 2015 edition. This annual event is the biggest international film festival in the Arab World that is solely dedicated for children. The festival will be held from April 23 to May 2 at the Madinat Jumeirah and the Mall of the Emirates in Dubai, UAE.
Written and directed by award-winning filmmaker and UNESCO Laureate artist Richard Soriano Legaspi, the lone entry from the Philippines in the competition program of the festival is vying for the Audience Choice Award in the International Short Category. Pipo tells of a young boy’s dream to have his family picture taken. It is Legaspi’s second installment from his “Collective Memoirs” short film trilogy. It shows the relationship of memories and how the past and present will marry in a simple narrative. The film was a competitive grant winner of the National Commission for Culture and the Arts and with the support funding from Università delle Idee and ILLY – Italy.
Legaspi’s achievements gained more importance when he represented the Philippines in major festivals and won a prestigious award in Italy. His first full-length film “Paano Ko Sasabihin?” starring Enchong Dee and Erich Gonzales, won the Special Jury Prize, Audience Award and Best in Editing at the 2009 Cinema One Originals and was a finalist at the Babel Film Festival in Italy. He is also the director and writer of award-winning films like “Manenaya,” Special Jury Prize winner at the Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival and the opening film of Asiatica Film Mediale in Rome in 2012, and “Ambulancia,” which earned the Miglior Montaggio Award at the San Gio Film Festival and was a finalist at the Dubai International Film Festival (IFF).
A prolific filmmaker, Legaspi also directed “Pamatid-Gutom,” “Kinulayang Kiti,” “Pagtakas sa Kawalan,” “Dimensions of Belonging,” and “Fare L’Amore con il Vento.” His first documentary “Ang Walang Kapagurang Paglalakbay ng Pulang Maleta” (L’instancabile viaggio della valigia rossa) was produced by GMA News TV under the CineTotoo International Documentary Film Festival 2014. His works are more focused on raising consciousness and creating space for dialogue on communal issues, responsible transformation of society and creative activation through contemporary art.
A two-time Gawad Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP) awardee in 2010 and 2011, Carlos Palanca Awardee for Literature in 2012 for the screenplay “Primera Bella,” and a Gawad Urian nominee for “Manenaya,” he received the prestigious UNESCO Laureate artist recognition in 2013, eventually becoming a resident artist of the Università delle Idee, Cittadellarte-Fondazione Pistoletto and ILLY CAN PRIZE WINNER – Art for Social Change in Italy.
Filipinos in Dubai will have the chance to see “Pipo” on its international premiere at the Vox Cinemas, Mall of the Emirates on Saturday 25th April at 3:00pm (UAE time).
Congratulations, Filmmaker and UE College of Fine Arts, Architecture and Design (CFAD) Professor Richard S. Legaspi! His short film ‘Pipo’ is the lone Filipino film in the competition program of the 2015 Children’s International Film Festival. The festival will be from April 23 to May 2, 2015 at the Madinat Jumeirah and the Mall of the Emirates in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
The film, which stars child actor Maliksi Morales, stage actress Chanel Latorre and veteran actor Lou Veloso, tells of a young boy’s dream to have his family picture taken.
Prof. Legaspi graduated from UE in 2001 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts, major in Advertising Arts degree, at the UE CFAD, where he went on to teach. He is a fellow of the Asian Film Academy in Busan, South Korea, where he studied filmmaking under renowned directors Mohsen Makhmalbaf and Pen-Ek Ratanaruang.
His first full-length film ‘Paano Ko Sasabihin?’, starring Enchong Dee and Erich Gonzales, won the Special Jury Prize, Audience Award and Best in Editing prize at the 2009 Cinema One Originals and was a finalist at the Babel Film Festival in Italy. Prof. Legaspi is also the director and writer of award-winning films like ‘Manenaya,’ which was the Jury Prize winner at the Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival and the opening film at the prestigious Asiatica Film Mediale in Rome, both in 2012; ‘Ambulancia,’ which earned the Miglior Montaggio Award at the San Gio Film Festival, and was a finalist at Dubai International Film Festival (IFF); ‘Kinulayang Kiti,’ a winner at the Gawad CCP Alternative Film and Video Festival and finalist at the Auburn IFF in Australia; and ‘Hunger Pangs,’ which was in competition at the Naousa IFF in Greece and part of the Official Selection of World Film Festival Bangkok 2012.
In 2012, Prof. Legaspi won 2nd Place in the Dulang Pampelikula category of the Don Carlos Palanca Memorial Awards for Literature for his work ‘Primera Bella.’ In 2013, he was selected as one of the UNESCO Aschberg Laureate Artists of 2013, a scholarship program that offers residencies to young artists worldwide. UNESCO-Aschberg advocates and promotes creativity, highlights cultural exchanges and the need for artists to enrich their experience through contact with other cultures.
Kudos, Warrior Filmmaker!
Samedi 6 Decembre 2014 / 16 h