‘On the traces of Abraskil’
Cultures are not static entities but are constituted by changing practices and meanings that operate at different social levels. Any given national culture is understood and acted upon differently by diverse social and cultural groups. Narratives of nationhood emphasize the traditions and continuity of the nation as being ‘in the nature of things’ and often are supported by a foundational myth of collective origin. ‘On the traces of Abraskil’ is a documentary that aims to give shape to an abstraction, that is, the construction of cultural identities in the specific context of Abkhazia, a self-declared state on the South-Western flank of the Caucasus region.
‘On the traces of Abraskil’ is a search and a research on the construction of a myth and its functions. These functions, the shared meanings of nationhood, have been documented in relation to the views projected from different representatives of Abkhazian society. At which level should a national culture be identified? And which set of values within those groups are the ‘authentic’ ones? There is anything definable as ‘authentic’ in the age of globalization? These are the questions ‘On the traces of Abraskil’ reflects upon. It is from these junctures that ‘On the traces of Abraskil’ tries to recuperate the Abkhazian foundational myth of Abraskil and the different understandings of his story.
The documentary introduces visual poetry and storytelling in order to challenge the traditional documentary format into an experiment that erases the boundaries between reality and illusion, tradition and modernity and eventually memory and myth.
‘On the traces of Abraskil’ an experimental documentary by
Sine Ergun, Writer and Curator.
Ibrahim Karci, documentary maker and Journalist,
Aper Sen, Visual Anthopologist,
Burcak Konukman, Performance Artist and
Pau Cata, Cultural Researcher and Curator.