The Apprentice 
2014, Türkiye, Tayfun Belet (22′).
Türkçe, İngilizce Altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

In 2014, when this film was shot, Bergama’s last master parchment maker in the world was 82 years old and looking to transfer his skills to someone in order to keep the art alive in the place where it was born thousands of years ago. When he is unable to find a young man willing to endure the hardships of life as a parchment apprentice, he finally accedes to the request of a young woman eager to learn the craft. This is her story. Tayfun Belet’s film The Apprentice has screened in numerous festivals and has also been recognised with a Special Success Plaque from UNESCO.


The Battle of Jerash 
2018, USA, Carlos Cabrera (26′)
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

Set on the grounds of a preserved hippodrome, a group of legionnaires, gladiators and charioteers try to hang on to Jordan’s ancient past. But as tourism continues to decline in the Middle East, the performers are faced with the harsh reality that each show may be their last. The Battle of Jerash is an entertaining look at ‘the Roman role’ in one Jordanian town, not so much in the past, but in the present.


Bauhaus Windows
2018, Germany, Anna Faroqhi, Haim Peretz (8′).
Almanca, Türkçe altyazıları (German, Turkish subtitles)

When the iconic Bauhaus school of art and architecture undergoes a massive renovation, the original windows are given a new life as the defining elements of a purpose-built exhibition space in Berlin. This short film documents the process involved in the ‘recycling’ of some of the most important cultural heritage of 20th-century Europe.


2016, Iran, Mehdi Heydari (26′)
Azerice, İngilizce altyazı (Azeri, English subtitles)

The Karapapak are a Turkic tribe that have historically resided in the areas to the east of present-day Turkey, from the Caucasus in the North to Iraq in the South. The documentary Bride offers a detailed depiction of the wedding customs and traditions among the Karapapak tribe living in the Azerbaijan region of north-western Iran. 


Caserta – Dining at the Royal Palace 
2016, Holland, Angelica Vigilante (10′)
İtalyanca, Türkçe altyazı (Italian, Turkish subtitles)

The Royal Palace of Caserta is the largest royal residence in the world by volume. It is listed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, together with Vanvitelli Park and Aqueduct and the nearby royal residence of San Leucio. The English Garden at Caserta is one of the oldest in Europe and includes an area inspired by Pompeii. In this video created for her blog, ‘assoupaspossible’, Angelica Vigilante interviews Mauro Felicori, general director of the Royal Palace, and Vincenzo Mazzarella, director of educational services, who talk about the charms and treats of Caserta.


Channerwick Brock 
2017, Scotland, Tanya Venture, Ellie Graham (10′)
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

Channerwick, in the Shetland Islands, is an ideal spot for enjoying a hiking holiday – especially if you’re an archaeologist. Over the summer of 2015, volunteers recruited through Archaeology Shetland cleaned, investigated and recorded an area along the coast where winter storms had exposed masses of archaeological deposits to reveal something amazing: an Iron Age castle. This short film records the story of this discovery by those who took part in the excavations.


Ciano: A Fisherman’s Tale 
2018, USA, Marco Vitale, Elena Grosso (13′).
İtalyanca, Türkçe altyazı (Italian, Turkish subtitles)

Luciano Monin has spent his whole life as a fisherman in Burano, the Venetian island known for its brightly coloured fisherman’s houses. But while each year may bring more and more tourists to Burano, the island’s fishermen, along with the fish, are dwindling in number. Ciano is more than the tale of one fisherman; it’s a Mediterranean tale as well. This short film from Marco Vitale and Elena Grosso points out, in living colour, the reality of a dying craft in a changing world. 


2014, Türkiye, Sibel Göloğlu, Savaş Karakaş (32′).
Türkçe, İngilizce altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

After close to 40 years, a Turkish-international team of archaeologist-divers return to Serçe Liman in Selimiye, Marmaris, the site of some of the most important underwater archaeological discoveries in the world. This film from Sibel Göloğlu and Savaş Karakaş lets you follow the original team, as they search for new underwater treasures and reminisce about the exciting days of their youth in Serçe Liman, working under the direction of Professor George Bass, the father of underwater archaeology.


Govan Young
2017, Scotland, David Archibald (30′)
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

Govan Young follows a group of schoolchildren as they learn the rarely told story of the Viking invasion of Central Scotland and the subsequent establishment of the medieval kingdom of Strathclyde, which had its spiritual centre in Govan. How will the children react when they discover that Vikings and kings walked on the ground below their feet? This entertaining film directed by David Archibald, Cara Connolly and Martin Clark has been shown in around 20 festivals, and it recently won three awards at the Arkhaois Cultural Heritage and Archaeology Film Festival (SC, USA).


Harvest: A Rural Spain Anthology (Hasat: Kırsal İspanya Antolojisi
2017, Spain, Diego Vivanco (28′)
İspanyolca, Türkçe/İngilizce altyazı (Spanish, Turkish/English subtitles)

Three connected short shorts from Kauri Multimedia: Saffron focuses on Daniel, Quico Tıpa and Raul and their project to revive traditional saffron harvesting in rural Teruel, Spain, where chronic depopulation virtually halted what was once a major industry; Cork looks at the sustainable harvesting of cork bark, an activity that takes place in Extremadura and Castilla La Mancha once every nine years during July and August; and Salt offers a beautiful depiction of the unique cultural landscape of the Janubio saltworks on the island of Lanzarote.


Hermana: The Untold History of Ankara’s Jewish Community 
2017, Türkiye. Enver Arcak
Türkçe, İngilizce Altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

Hermana relates the story of the Jewish community in Ankara, from its heyday through its migration. Using interviews with former residents of the capital’s Jewish neighbourhood, the documentary relates the history of the community, which has been present in Ankara since Roman times. The film focuses on the late Ottoman period, with the opening of the Ravzai Terraki school in 1899 and the construction of the synagogue in 1907, through the founding of the Republic and the times that followed. Director Enver Arcak received a SALT Research Grant for the film, which premiered at the28th Ankara International Film Festival in 2017. It won the Best Documentary Audience Award in the Boston-Turkish Festival Documentary & Short Film Competition that same year.


Immediacy of Distance
2016, USA, William Morris (23′).
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

An experimental documentary that explores memory and place, Immediacy of Distance started with artist William Morris’s discovery of 30 rolls of Super 8 movies in the basement of his family home. The images, recorded by his mother, provide a snapshot of life in the black urban environment of North St. Louis in the 1970s. Morris pairs these images with original and existing music as well as audio interviews with his mother that present an oral history of growing up in a poor black family in rural Mississippi in the 1930s and 40s.


2017, Türkiye, Savaş Yavuz (17′)
Türkçe, İngilizce altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

A shared tradition belonging to the Turkish and Greek populations of the Black Sea Region, ‘kalandar’ has a history that goes back thousands of years. On a midwinter’s night, bands of masqueraders would go from house to house, entertaining the residents with stories in exchange for gifts. The prize-winning documentary Koncolos follows a handful of people in one of the mountain villages of Trabzon who are trying to keep this tradition alive.


The Last Farmer-cum-Prehistorian
2014, France, Sophie Cattoire (52′).
Fransızca, Türkçe altyazı (French, Turkish subtitles)

A film by Sophie Cattoire, The Last Farmer-cum-Prehistorian shares the magical appeal of prehistory, the sheer physical pleasure of going deep underground and discovering paintings and drawings that testify to the artistry of the human beings we once were – when mammoths roamed the countryside. It’s a film about Gilbert Pemendrant, the owner of the Bernifal Cave in Meyrals, Dordogne, France. You’ll get as much pleasure out of Sophie’s film as Gilbert gets out of sharing the secrets of his marvellous painted cave. (The film is being screened at Foça Film Days with the cooperation of the Izmir French Cultural Institute.)


Layer (Katman)
2017, Türkiye. Melek Ulagay Taylan (67′)
Türkçe, İngilizce Altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

Looking at an archaeological dig in progress, sometimes it’s hard to answer the question, “What exactly is going on here?” Katman demystifies the work of archaeologists, as it follows Drs Gül Pulhan and Stuart Blaylock and their team at the Gre Amer archaeological recovery excavations in Işıkveren Village in Batman, near the site of the Ilısu Dam. Melek Ulagay Taylan’s documentary premiered in Istanbul at the Pera Museum in January, and it’s just returning from Italy, where it was featured in the prestigious archaeological film festival in Rovereto.


Loch Paible Music Video
2017, Scotland, Tanya Venture (3′)
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

Along the west coast of the Scottish island of North Uist in the Outer Hebrides, local residents were discovering and reporting worked bone, pottery and wooden objects eroding out of a layer of peat. With support from the SCAPE Trust, the Loch Paible ShoreDIG community archaeological project was conducted to learn more about the site. This lively little music video documents an ordinary day at work at an iron-age dig in a spot where bits of archaeological information are lost with every high tide.


Looters of the Gods
2010, Italy, Adolfo Conti (57′).
İtalyan, Türkçe altyazı (Italian, Turkish subtitles)

A golden funerary wreath is the ‘star’ of this award-winning production by Adolfo Conti, which shows how major museums participate in the illicit antiquities trade. Conti follows a Greek investigative reporter and Art Squad who crack the case of the wreath, which was stolen from royal Macedonian tombs in Northern Greece and wound up in the collection of the Getty Museum in the United States. Eventually, the wreath is returned to Greece (Looters of the Gods is being screened at Foça Film Days with the cooperation of the Istanbul Italian Cultural Institute.)


Matera – City of Bread
2017, Hollanda, yön. Angelica Vigilante (8′).
İngilizce/İtalyanca, Türkçe altyazı (English/Italian, Turkish subtitles)

2019 European Capital of Culture Matera is a town of 60,000 in southern Italy that was first placed on UNESCO’s World Cultural Heritage List in 1993. Visually, Matera is a cross between Turkey’s Mardin and Cappadocia. For centuries, the town has had its own unique bread and a culture built up around it. This short film is the story of both the bread and the town. As filmmaker and cook Angelica Vigilante explains, “Some foods are to their territory what DNA is to a living organism: a bite sums up the spirit, history and identity of the place.”


Moving Meur Burnt Mound
2016, Scotland,  Tanya Venture, Tom Dawson (14′).
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

In 2005, a severe storm in Scotland’s Orkney Islands exposed a stone cist-like box at Meur. Excavations revealed that what was first thought to be a burial was, in fact, a burnt mound dating to the Bronze Age. When the site was again threatened by a storm in 2014, archaeologists and volunteers from the community re-excavated and relocated the mound to a heritage centre, where it has become a great attraction for visitors to the island and a learning resource for the local school. In this film, the volunteers share their experiences of saving this prehistoric structure.


The Mysterious Stones of Hakkari
2014, Türkiye, Bahriye Dal (40′)
Türkçe, İngilizce altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

The 13 mysterious stones at the centre of this prize-winning film were uncovered by accident close to the Turkish-Iranian-Iraqi border. Dating back to 3500 B.C., they range between 80 cm and 3.5 metres in height and bear no resemblance to anything else found in the region. “The first time we saw these historical works, with their powerful facial expressions and visual details, we were deeply affected,” say the filmmakers. “Our curiosity about their mysterious poses is what motivated us to make this film.”


Nos Racines – Our Roots
2018, France, André Russell (10′).
Fransızca, Türkçe altyazılı (French, Turkish subtitles)

Jean-Claude has worked as a carpenter since he was 14 years old. It’s not just a job, but a passion. Unfortunately, in the face of modern production, his knowledge and experience is disappearing, as are the trees he works with. A finalist in the Paris Green Documentaries Day of 2018, Our Roots is a reminder of the essential ties between nature and culture, and how we can’t preserve the latter without preserving the former, too.


Oinousses Island
2018, Türkiye, yön. Sibel Göloğlu, Savaş Karakaş (62′).
Türkçe (Turkish)

In the 17th century, the Ottomans and the Venetians were in stiff competition to gain control over the Aegean and the Mediterranean Seas. On 9 February 1695, the Ottoman and Venetian fleets fought a decisive battle off the island of Oinousses, between Çeşme and Chios. The battle ended in victory for the Ottomans and the destruction of a large part of the Venetian navy. Years later, the sunken vessels were identified by one of Turkey’s most important underwater documentary filmmakers, Savaş Karakaş, and his team using some incredible technology.


Palmyra: The Invented City
2018, Brazil, Caue Nunes (11′)
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazılı (English, Turkish subtitles)

Through the creative use of old drawings and photographs, Caue Nunes’ film shows the destruction of the Syrian ancient city of Palmyra. The script was developed based on the true story of a Syrian persecuted for defending his city’s monuments. Nunes’ calls Palmyra: The Invented City a “mockumentary”. In fact, the film asks serious questions about the “ownership” of cultural heritage.


Peace and Quiet in the Aquarium
2017, Türkiye, Tayfun Belet (22′).
Türkçe, İngilizce altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

Until they married, some of these women had never even seen the sea. But fishing in Bozburun, Datça is a family business, and once they tie their lives together with their fishermen husbands, these women resign themselves to the difficulties of life on the water. Tayfun Belet’s camera captures the strength and optimism of these women and the beauty of the ‘aquarium’. A perfect film to watch as we head towards winter in the Aegean…


Sakura: An Archetypal Journey
2018, Holland, Anne Fehres.
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

The cherry blossom (sakura) is used as a metaphor for the journey of life in this film by video artist Anne Fehres. Japanese culture is presented in a collage of history, music, philosophy, technology and society that we see through the eyes of the director. Fehres created Sakura during a residency program in Chiyoda City, Japan. The film is one of four essay films, each focusing on a different season in a different country.


A Singular Garden
2017, Brazil, Monica Klemz (16′).

The Garden of the Catete Palace is a historical urban garden in the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Constructed by a slave-owning empire, the garden went on to witness the inauguration of 16 presidents. Today, it is listed as part of the historical patrimony of the Brazilian nation. This beautiful garden, its place in history and in the lives of those who pass through it, is the subject of this beautiful documentary, winner of the award for Best Cinematography in a Short Feature Documentary at the 2018 London International Filmmaker Festival.


Standing on the Shoulders of Giants
2016, Scotland, Tanya Venture (5′)
İngilizce, Türkçe altyazı (English, Turkish subtitles)

Once upon a time on the northeast coast of Scotland lived a powerful warrior people known as the Picts. The Picts had no written language, but they created fabulous images, mainly in the form of carved standing stones. The Wemyss Caves are also full of reliefs carved by the Picts, and this humorous film from SCAPE gives us a history of how this particular piece of cultural heritage has been recorded over time.


Tales from the Island: Salt Pans
2016, Malta, Tim Lewis (10′).
Maltızca, Türkçe altyazı (Maltese, Turkish subtitles)

“When you look at the salt pans, you see the traces of the people who made them,” says Josephine Xuereb, who narrates this short doc from Tim Lewis. As ‘the Salt Man’s Daughter’, Xuereb grew up thinking that her family’s occupation – harvesting salt in Gozo, Malta – was special; after all, they’d been doing it for 400 years. The new generation taking over the responsibility for salt production must cope with challenges such as climate change, but may benefit from new possibilities, such as renewed interest in old traditional, techniques and tourism.


Ta’riz: Tooth for a Tooth, Word for a Word
2018, Türkiye, Sezer Ağgez (29′).
Türkçe, İngilizce altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

A combination of music and literature, rap is part of the distinct culture known as hip-hop, which also includes visual art (graffiti) and dance (breakdancing). It developed among the black urban underclass in the United States in the 1970s and quickly spread throughout the world, making its way to Turkey from Germany. Director Sezer Ağgez and his team put together this film as a way of repaying a debt to the world of rap music and graffiti art that they had been immersed in during their childhood and adolescence. You’ll enjoy watching this energetic film that looks at the lives, music and attitudes of the individuals involved in the world of rap music in Turkey.


Water Mill
2018, Türkiye. Gülben Uslu (11′)
Türkçe, İngilizce Altyazı (Turkish, English subtitles)

The film looks at the disappearing culture surrounding the karmate (“Mill”), which symbolises production, labour and cooperation. The mill plays a role in daily life, providing an environment for socialising, especially for women, who come together for work. The visual imagery of the film will certainly whet your appetite!


Where Flamingos Turn Pink
2018, Holland, Angelica Vigilante (10′)
İtalyanca, Türkçe altyazı (Italian, Turkish subtitles)

This is the story of the tradition behind one of the most basic products to be found at any moment in our daily lives: salt. It’s the story of the salt harvest, first begun by the Phoenicians 2,500 years ago; of the family who, for three generations, has continued to preserve the high quality by harvesting the salt by hand; and of how salt has become a part of the cultural heritage as well as the tourist economy of the Trapani region in southern Italy. Today, the region is a nature reserve and sanctuary managed by the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF), and “Trapani Salt” is a protected geographical indication (PGI).


Women of Archangel Michael
2014, Armenia, yön. Vahan İshkhanyan (28′)
Ermenice/Rusça, Türkçe altyazı (Armenian/Russian, Turkish subtitles)

There is no priest at St. Michael’s Church of Privolnoe, in northern Armenia. Instead, every week, five middle-aged women conduct Sunday mass by themselves. They are some of the last of members of a dwindling Russian community, founded by Russian soldiers in the 1850s, but mainly abandoned by their descendents with the collapse of the Soviet Union in the 1990s. The film tells the story of the Women of Archangel Michael as they prepare for the Feast of the Holy Trinity.


You Gotta Believe
2017, USA, Nina Paley (3′).
İngilizce (English)

Nina Paley’s fantastic animation of Anatolian and Aegean statues of the mother goddess, in all her variations, is actually part of Paley’s second feature-length animation, Seder Masochism. You Gotta Believe features Moses being confronted by the goddesses that are about to be crushed by the patriarchy. Paley’s first full-length animation, an award-winning musical interpretation of the Hindu epic Ramayana called Sita Sings the Blues, is available for download from the Internet.