The 14th International Contemporary and Video Art Festival “Waterpieces” organised by Culture and Arts Project “NOASS”, this year coincides with the Riga City Festival and runs from August 15 – 17. Festival “Waterpieces” is one of the key annual events for moving image and digital arts culture in Latvia, celebrating the intersection of film and music, and bringing a wide spectrum of the best local and international animation, video and installation art to its audience.
This year’s festival theme – Changing Urban Cityscapes – is an invitation to rediscover cosmopolitan context as an organic and heterogeneous entitywhich has a mind of its own and the power to change and reshape the patterns of our daily reality. The summer festival banner includes: curators talks, short and animation film screenings, featuring a wide selection of video art from the Baltic states, Spain, Australia, Japan and many more, moving image an installation art exhibitions, kids programs, workshops and music performances on AB Dam and alongside the beautiful Riga City Canal in Kronvalda park.
The festival kicks off on Friday, 15 August, with a preview of the “Temporary Urban Screen Riga” large cross-cultural project curated by Lorenzo Gerbi (Screencity Lab, IT) in collaboration with Interactionfield (DE) for the festival “Waterpieces”. A wide international moving image selection showcases the works that have already been viewed by millions of people across the globe on big screens in public spaces, including city parks, central squares, shopping centres and city facades to name but few. The project, that will be on show during the two festival days, August 15 -16, involves the participation of such distinguished institutions as Streaming Museum (USA) with Björk’s “Mutual Core” video in Times Square’s Midnight Moment, Screencity Festival (NO) with “Urban Tide” programme and PAF Festival that invites us to take an animated walk through symbolic and real cities.
On August 15, the opening ceremony will be followed by the screening of Best of Punto y Raya 2014 (ES). Punto y Raya (Dot&Line) is the world’s most abstract festival, exploring experimental narrative expressions in filmmaking and live cinema through the use of pure Form, Colour, Motion and Sound, and avoids direct representation. Since its establishment in 2007, Punto y Raya overcomes intercultural barriers and brings together people from all over the world under the motto “Back to basics!” Another of Friday’s spectacles is the CologneOFF International Videoart Festival’s “Art in Urban Environments” screening curated by Wilfried Agricola de Cologne and incorporating Japan Media Arts Festival’s latest selection of short film and animation.
On 16 August, the events programme will continue in Kronvalda park, near the Riga City Canal with curators’ talks and open-air film screenings. Looking at the many impulses shaping our urban, cosmopolitan experience, curator Eglė Mikalajūnė (National Gallery of Art, Lithuania) will introduce the generation of Lithuanian artists born in the 1970s and 1980s in her programme “Cityscapes on the Verge”. The video selection foregrounds work by eight moving image artists from Lithuania, and directs our attention to the city – a living organism, that speaks to people through its architectural forms and natural segments, and which flourishes betwixt hutments and high-rises. The second talk will reflect on trending urban movements and changing cityscapes as seen by the artists currently living and working in Estonia; this will be in the programme curated by Sten Ojavee (Contemporary Arts Center, Estonia).
The evening will conclude with a bright, dynamic and immersing screening of digital art selection curated by Australia’s most progressive festival Pause Fest specifically for the event. The program features commanding names within contemporary digital culture and is inspired by urban images and practices.
On the third and the last day, August 17, the festival “Waterpieces” will be returning to AB Dam with a premier of its special Kids edition. For the first time, we are happy to invite a young audience to enjoy open-air children’s screenings, organised in collaboration with London Animation Film Festival, take part in many family workshops and create a stop motion film with a use of various techniques and materials.
The selection of more than 40 short animations already awarded at festivals around the world is divided into segments for audience aged 0-7 and 7-15.
First of our partners, The London International Animation Festival started in 2004 and has very quickly become the largest animation festival in the UK. LIAF, showcasing over 250 films each year, proudly supports, delivers and promotes the whole spectrum of animation, showing that animation is for everyone.
Our next partner, The OFAFA Author’s Animated Films Festival in Cracow is an annual summary of the works created by Polish animators in the previous years. That’s a place where old masters meet young talents. OFAFA presents professional, student and non-professional films which were created at minimum 50% by one person. Therefore the viewers are invited to the worlds created by the imagination of particular artists.
The workshops following screenings will be a perfect opportunity to learn the basics of stop motion animation. Children will be encouraged to express their ideas using various techniques and materials. Each of stands will present different idea for short stop motion film. Everybody is welcome to make their own video, later to be taken home.
Over the three festival days, many talks, events, music performances and parallel screenings will take place on AB Dam and in the city centre, making it the perfect occasion to relish the last days of summer and enjoy our annual celebration of moving image and digital arts culture.