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Film Screening: Island of the Hungry Ghosts

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Ellen Melville Centre

2 Freyberg Place

Auckland, Auckland 1000

New Zealand

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Located off the coast of Indonesia, the Australian territory of Christmas Island is inhabited by migratory crabs travelling in their millions from the jungle towards the ocean, in a movement that has been provoked by the full moon for hundreds of thousands of years.

Poh Lin Lee is a “trauma therapist” who lives with her family in this seemingly idyllic paradise. Every day, she talks with the asylum seekers held indefinitely in a high-security detention centre hidden in the island’s core, attempting to support them in a situation that is as unbearable as its outcome is uncertain.

As Poh Lin and her family explore the island’s beautiful yet threatening landscape, the local islanders carry out their “hungry ghost” rituals for the spirits of those who died on the island without a burial. They make offerings to appease the lost souls who are said to be wandering the jungles at night looking for home.

ISLAND OF THE HUNGRY GHOSTS is a hybrid documentary that moves between the natural migration and the chaotic and tragic migration of the humans, which is in constant metamorphoses by the unseen decision-making structures.

Watch the trailer here.

This event is part of Gus Fisher Gallery's The Shouting Valley exhibition public programme.

The Shouting Valley: Interrogating the Borders Between Us features artists whose politically motivating and activating work asks us to engage in urgent discussions of injustice in order to effect change.

The works in this exhibition highlight contemporary issues relating to borders and migration, questioning why freedom of movement often appears to be a Western privilege; a subject in the forefront of people’s minds following the tragic events in Christchurch and the controversy surrounding the treatment of refugees at Australian off-shore detention centres. As a country largely populated by migrants, the exhibition resonates with Aotearoa’s diverse history and asks us to think about our own whakapapa.

More on the exhibition here.

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Date and Time

Location

Ellen Melville Centre

2 Freyberg Place

Auckland, Auckland 1000

New Zealand

View Map

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