December 23, 2022 | Ludovica De Benedetti

A movie inviting us not to cover our eyes: UNIMED awards Jasmila Zbanic for “Quo Vadis, Aida?”

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For 6 editions, UNIMED has been organising the UNIMED Award at the Venice International Film Festival, collateral prize resulting from the collaboration between UNIMED and la Biennale of Venice.

This annual award, launched in 2017, is assigned by a jury of international students coming from UNIMED associated universities to the competing movie that best reflects the value of cultural diversity, promotes freedom of artistic expression and cultural exchanges.

The award was established in memory of Prof. Franco Rizzi, former Secretary General and founder of UNIMED, for his lifelong and career commitment to improve cooperation between Euro-Mediterranean universities.

Indeed, since its foundation, UNIMED has always been committed to use education as a global force and a mutual understanding vehicle.

For that purpose, the UNIMED Award promotes the understanding between peoples of different cultures and religious beliefs, it fights racism and discrimination, revealing the complex causes of violence and demonstrating the successful mastering of conflicts.

The aim of the UNIMED Award is to encourage cultural exchanges among students and highlight the value of cultural diversity in art.

In 2020, the Award was conferred to the movie “Quo Vadis, Aida?” by Jasmila Žbanić, for its artistic value and its ability to depict the current themes of integration and multiculturalism. The jury motivated its choice as follows:

The movie deals with the war that broke up Yugoslavia, in particular in the area of Srebrenica. Through Aida’s eyes, we are involved in the tragedy of a community that lives together, even though it’s culturally divided.

The director’s choices stress the protagonist’s dualism – mother and interpreter. The style of the movie is sober and real: it leaves in the audience a feeling of disillusionment and deafening silence.

The movie invites us not to cover our eyes, when we look at the brutality of the past, and to think about a present that is still too controversial.

On November 29th, 2022, the film “Quo Vadis, Aida?”, winner of the UNIMED Award in Venice in 2020, inaugurated the Balkan Film Festival in Rome.

After the distances imposed by the pandemic, UNIMED met the film director Jasmila Žbanić and had the honour to deliver the Award.

After the distances imposed by the pandemic, UNIMED met the film director Jasmila Žbanić and had the honour to deliver the Award.
 
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International artists conceived this award with an incredible  commitment to convey its messages.   The Award “The Dance of Light (Sun)” was created by Miloš Todorović, with the collaboration of the young curator Natasha Radojevic, partner of the Drina Gallery and founder of Logic Art Space. The dance of light is a humble interaction between the visual sensation of light and its profound symbolism.

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