VICTORIA; (2012); Olivia Ciummo; Digi, TRT: 10:21
Three sisters search for a place to rest in different landscapes – versions of utopia are taken away, leaving them with impressions of a war.
How did this film come about, and what is it about?
Victoria came about as a way to explore cyclical ideas in a cultural or environmental landscape. Being that there are many cyclical concepts to investigate, Victoria draws out impressions about the cyclical aspects of nature and fear. The people, landscapes and animals shift around in time and change characteristics to describe a way in which things might change as they cycle.
Why did you chose to film these shots, some particularly staged with animals?
I chose to document environments where nature has taken back the landscape— for example the rabbits. I traveled specifically to Victoria Canada after having heard about the feral rabbit population— I thought that filming an environment where rabbits had populated would be a way to describe this cyclical aspects of nature. It was to my surprise that the rabbits lived in a seemingly vacant suburban backdrop with hawks to battle. By chance these elements would also become characters, both the hawk and the vacant housing.
Is there anything else you’d like to say about your creative process with this film?
The footage for Victoria was shot over the course of a year and I traveled to the different locations by boat, plane, bus, and car. When I set out to shoot Victoria, a lot was left up to chance— I had thought of particular shots that I wanted to attempt, but being that I was dealing with nature, in particular the bunnies, I was not sure how things would end up. Once all the unpredictable elements were captured the film took a very different creative process, one that was more scripted and meticulous. When I watch the three sisters (played by Julia Metelsky, Saheila Azadi and Libby Morrison) walking in front of a snow bank, with the synth fading out, I can’t help but think of the media space that is created when things are fabricated – the overwhelming score, the scripted movements and voice-over all come through as very constructed elements.