Image: PIANOFORTE, VIFF 2023
A kaleidoscope of ground-breaking artists, great performances, and cultural icons
This year’s documentaries explore a variety of art forms, profiling practitioners both aspiring and iconic. While some have proven to be trailblazers, others have found themselves waylaid while in pursuit of their dreams. In each case, the filmmakers have determined the ideal aesthetic complement for their subject, including the riveting use of 3D to offer a greater appreciation of Anselm Kiefer’s textured canvases. The passion fueling each of these artists is palpable, making for inspirational viewing.
No artist instills a sense of sublime awe like the legendary Robert Irwin, Elusive yet down to earth, Irwin is a true original. His extraordinary work is honored in this stunning portrait of one of the most influential contemporary artists of our age.
In a recollection of veteran filmmaker James Ivory's unfinished film about Afghanistan. Old footage provides a pronounced air of mystery to compliment its rough beauty, setting the scene for a look back into Ivory's life.
Filmed over thirteen years, viewers follow Apolonia Sokol's seemingly storybook life. In a portrait of the vibrant, charismatic force that is Apolonia, in tandem with a remarkable document of the creative interplay between the filmmaker and her subject.
In a deserted mining town, 29-year-old Caiti Lord faces existential ennui. As her childhood aspirations feel impossible, Lord has taken a life as a struggling singer songwriter, working at her local bar. Captured through the quiet rhythms of her hometown.
When a self-taught street dancer struggles in the search for paid work, his raw determination and artistic passion pushes him to attend classical training. Call Me Dancer is a fight for a dream despite all odds.
For many growing up in the 1990s, Indigo Girls was the band that defined a generation, admired for their unique alt-folk sound, and gender norm defiance. In a recollection of their 40-year career, their legacy is solidified through earnest interviews.
A thrilling glimpse into what it takes to compete in the renowned International Chopin Competition, which takes place every five years and can bestow overnight fame on the victor. This doc conveys the nerves, camaraderie and of course the glorious music.
Since her breakout as one of the most high-profile Black models in the 1970s, fashion world titan Bethann Hardison has advocated for diversity both on and off the runway. This elegant documentary traces her attempt to revolutionize the fashion world.
This remarkable film documents a 28-year quest for glory. Indonesian sculptor Nyoman Nuarta’s goal is to build the world’s largest brass and copper structure. To do so, he must contend with public opposition, and political turmoil.
A stunning documentary presents the work of contemporary German artist Anselm Kiefer, who for decades has rattled history and shown a mirror to post Second World War complacency and forgetfulness. Presented in 3D.