A small festival with great ambitions

The Unseen Festival has reached its third edition. From October 2-6 this year, projections of the new edition of Unseen will take place at various locations in Cavtat, in several festival programs. As in previous years, the selection of films by young authors who answered our public call last spring is central to the program. We are also continuing our cooperation with other festivals in Croatia and the region, which is bringing us Zagreb Subversive Film Festival and a selection of films from their program this year, selected by curator Dina Pokrajac. We will also host a selection of films from the Belgrade’s Vizantrop Festival, as well as Kurdish artist Servet Cihangiroglu and Bosnian artist with Dutch address Armina Pilav, who will present their work together through a hybrid form. We always try to make Cavtat a place of gathering for young authors from Southeast Europe for a couple of days, who would then be able to discuss their new ideas and future film projects through informal socializing and introductions.

What has been the hallmark of Unseen all these years is that it wanted to remain a small festival in a small environment that had its own cinema-show tradition, but in the meantime, it became history and now it is only recorded in the memories of locals or retired cinema operators. In a film world where festivals start their day-to-day life without a concrete plan for sustainability, survival and a sense of the environment in which they take place, Unseen is a festival that does not want to be one of the festivals but one of the steps on the road to re-establishing film life in the area. Creating the conditions for the revitalization of regular film screening, and then the possible formation of a film community and film education for future generations of filmmakers, is the mission of Unseen.

As Unseen seeks to re-launch film life in the Municipality of Konavle, this small festival in a small community did not hesitate to open up slightly larger topics, both through the selection of films in its program and in discussions and debates that are part of the festival program. The festival, after all, was initiated with the aim of revitalizing certain locations in the urbanity of Cavtat and giving it a different purpose from the existing one, which is almost always tourism in this part of the country. Accordingly, the topic of public space and then of space in general (its geographical, political and cultural layers) is something that is the guiding principle of Unseen, which it will not lose for the third year in a row. The discourse program will discuss current projects in this environment that potentially impair the quality of life of citizens and the possibility of using common resources and public space.

In conclusion, Unseen is an unambitious festival with high ambitions. With our regular audiences, partner festivals and organizations, and while leaning on the system of public support in culture, we will strive to achieve these ambitions: to continue to gather young filmmakers in Cavtat and encourage their work, to speak critically and engagingly in film language about the problems of development and influence of different “Development projects” to our everyday life, and ultimately extend the festival and cinema screening to the whole year, not just a few days of the festival.

 We look forward to your arrival at the third Unseen and enjoy the movies!