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    Directed by

    Chile, Argentina, Canada


    16 min


    Filmed in the Andean Mountains in the traditional lands of the Atacameño, Aymara and Calchaquí-Diaguita in Northern Chile and Northwest Argentina, ALTIPLANO takes places within a geological universe of ancestral salt flats, volcanic deserts, and coloured lakes. Fusing earth with sky, day with night, heartbeat with mountain, and mineral with iridescent cloud, ALTIPLANO reveals a vibrating Ektachrome landscape in which a bright blue sun forever threatens to eclipse a blood-red moon. Coupled with an entirely natural soundscape generated from infrasound recordings of volcanoes, geysers, Chilean blue whales and more, ALTIPLANO makes use of in-camera editing to create evocative visual rhythms through the ecstatic clash of color and form. Landscapes pulse and stutter, transformed through complex pixelation and superimposition techniques into spaces that exist in a multitude of times simultaneously. Located at the heart of a natural ecosystem threatened by a century of saltpeter and nitrate mining practices and recent geothermic exploitation, ALTIPLANO reveals an ancient land standing witness to all that is, was and will be.



    Malena Szlam
    Malena Szlam
    Malena Szlam

    Malena Szlam


    Born and raised in Chile, Malena Szlam is an artist-filmmaker based in Montréal. Working at the intersection of cinema, installation, and performance, her practice explores the relationship between the natural world, perception, and intuitive process. The poetics developed through her time-based works and in-camera edited films engage the material and affective dimensions of analogue film practice. Szlam’s work has been exhibited in numerous festivals and museums, including the International Film Festival Rotterdam, the Edinburgh International Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival, the New York Film Festival, the Hong Kong Film Festival, the Museum of Fine Arts Boston, and the Buenos Aires Museum of Modern Art. A recent retrospective of her work was presented at Los Angeles Filmforum. Her films include ALTIPLANO (2018), MORFOLOGÍA DE UN SUEÑO (2018), LUNAR ALMANAC (2013), ANAGRAMS OF LIGHT (2011), RHYTHM TRAIL (2010-11), BENEATH YOUR SKIN OF DEEP HOLLOW (2010) and CHRONOGRAM OF INEXISTENT TIME (2008). Her installations include Por la noche volvió delirando todo es agua (2011), Through the Margin of Mirrors (2010), Chronogram of Inexistent Time (2008), Una esfera cuyo centro está en todas partes (2005) and Milimetraje (2004).

    Selected Filmography