Hungry Hill and Mapping the Peaks: Film + Post-Screening Panel Conversation

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Film Environment Spoken Word


03/08/2024 14:00


Skibbereen Town Hall




Hungry Hill documents the daily struggle of a community of sheep farmers in a mountainous region of Ireland, against the backdrop of an historical warning of ecological catastrophe from another part of Europe.
Filmed on the highest point on the Beara Peninsula in the southwest of Ireland, Hungry Hill follows the day-to-day lives of a community of sheep farmers who are in perpetual negotiation with the demands of the terrain, changing societal attitudes, and the impact of globalisation. Central to the film is the story of three generations of co-director Vanmechelen’s family, who moved to Ireland from the Drowned Land of Saeftinghe in Holland/Belgium in the 1980s. The family left their farm in the polders, due to its proximity to the Doel nuclear power station and the adverse effects of pollution coming from the pharmaceutical industry. Archival media from Belgium and Holland weaves an intertextuality with footage from Hungry Hill that connects disparate times and places.
Mieke Vanmechelen is an artist and hill farmer based between the Firestation Artist Studios in Dublin and Beara Peninsula. Her practice involves being embedded in and responding to her immediate environment. Dissolving boundaries between documentary and narrative-oriented film she deploys place, animals and people as embodied investigative tools.

Michael Holly is an artist, filmmaker, researcher and lecturer in film practice at Queen’s University Belfast. His work spans contemporary installation art and documentary filmmaking, often investigating contemporary politics, ecologies and social identities.
MAPPING THE PEAKS: Post Screening Conversation
An informal discussion with Director and Producer Mieke Vanmechelen, Co-Director Michael Holly and featured local farmer Connie Doyle. Facilitated by Curator Roisín Foley.
The conversation will explore how the experimental nature of the film is grounded in the relations between the humans, animals and the the mountain itself-the location of the film, and the highest point on the Beara Peninsula. Following on from last years event The Arts of Climate Action: Acting Local, Thinking Global this event will be framed in the context of our current ecological crises, and will endeavor to approach such existential crises with collaborative and open ended approaches.