Fejos Postdoctoral Fellowship: Lucas Bessire

As we round out the year Wenner-Gren is pleased to present an abstract and trailer for Dr. Lucas Bessire who received a Fejos Postdoctoral Fellowship to aid filmmaking on The Ayoreo Video Project.


ayoreo_trailer_FINAL from Lucas Bessire on Vimeo.

The Ayoreo Video Project

Fejos Postdoctoral Fellowship

The Ayoreo Video Project is an experiment in visual anthropology and political advocacy through collaborative video-making with Ayoreo-speaking people. Developed over two years in collaboration with Totobiegosode-Ayoreo leadership and the organization Video Nas Aldeias, the project taught Ayoreo to make their own videos. It began with a video workshop in a remote village, which trained a select group of fourteen Ayoreo from five villages, three different Ayoreo tribes and both sides of the Bolivia/Paraguay border in the basics of digital filmmaking. The project assisted Ayoreo filmmakers as they conceived, shot and eventually edited videos on the topics and themes of their choice. The result is a set of four feature length films, meant as stand-alone parts of a quartet, which substantively revise previous filmic imagery of Ayoreo.  These include the first three Ayoreo-made videos and an ethnographic documentary about the process. Together, the films allow Ayoreo to tell their own stories about themselves, to speak back to impoverished representations of their humanity, and to facilitate cross-cultural dialogue in a context of violent dispossession. At the same time, the films open new directions for future reflection, research and advocacy.  They are:

Farewell to Savage.  2017. 70 minutes.  Directed by Lucas Bessire, with the Ayoreo Video Project.

Yiquijmapiedie / Our Ways. 2017. 52 minutes.  Directed by Chagabi Etacore.

Ore Enominone / Visions.  2017. 92 minutes. Directed by Ajesua Etacore, Daijnidi Picanerai, Chamia Chiqueno and Erui Etacore.

Ujirei / Regeneration. 2017. 55 minutes.  Directed by Mateo Sobode Chiqueno

To learn more about Dr. Bessire’s project we invite you to read his article in the November issue of Visual Anthropology Review.

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