Friday, May 28, 2010

Electric Armenia

Electric Armenia from Karl Armen on Vimeo.

I have returned from Armenia 3 months ago after a year and a half of living, working and doing volunteer work there. I was shooting footage roughly on a weekly basis, trying not to miss out on key and everyday happenings that were occurring around me. I loved being in Armenia, it became a second home to me.

I shot with an aim to make a fiction movie but did not know what form or structure it would have. The country being ancient but also in post-soviet reconstruction, I knew that the movie had to include both symbols of old and new. So when I shot, I kept in my mind to record- when apt and possible- old and new elements using the same camera moves, so that I can juxtapose them smoothly during editing.

1 comment:

  1. I re-cut this. Something I've been meaning to do for a while. I think I was using too many shots of national monuments and relying on their greatness to make the film look interesting. I decided to get rid of some and use more 'street' and 'nature' footage instead. Also, I added some of my intro shots near the end. The film, with its travelogue nature is exploring the notion of past events lived and their significance, so the closing works better now I think.

    A friend of mine asked what some of the Armenian writing meant:

    --tchehenvel, [tʃɨhɛnvɛl], on the train window (many points in the film) means ‘don’t lean’

    --teghakir genats, [tɛʁakir gɛnats], in red (at 2:48) means ‘prescription for life’. It’s followed by axioms for clean and ethical living. The list is taken from the work of turn of the century Armenian ethicist Hohvaness Boudjikanian