„Anne Aghion is raising funds through Kickstarter for Iriba Center For Multimedia Heritage, a Documentary project in Kigali, Rwanda that will gather films, photographs and audio recordings dating from the start of colonial rule in East Africa to the present day to keep the country’s history alive and accessible for all Rwandans.
To help fund this project, see http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1021275587/iriba-center-in-rwanda-a-media…
IRIBA CENTER is the extension of more than a decade of work by multiple award-winning filmmaker (and Sundance Institute grantee) Anne Aghion.
Since 1994, all Rwandans share genocide as their central legacy. As they search for a path to long-lasting recovery and peace, discovering—or re-discovering—their common history and cultural identity is essential to moving forward and to consolidating peaceful coexistence. Our goal is to give free and open access to that history in picture and sound.
IRIBA CENTER FOR MULTIMEDIA HERITAGE, whose name means „the source,“ will gather films, photographs and audio recordings dating from the start of colonial rule in East Africa, more than a century ago, to the present day. On site—in a building the French Embassy in Kigali has already pledged to us—we will offer individual screening stations, and create class and group programs. Just as important, we also plan to send mobile cinema programs out into the rural communities where most Rwandans—and the most disenfranchised Rwandans—live.
Audiovisual materials are an important part of any country’s historical and cultural legacy. But in Rwanda, where many do not read or write, less than a generation after the most efficient genocide of the twentieth century, these resources will play a critical role for future generations to learn about their past as they build towards a common future free of strife.
To begin with, we will solicit materials from international institutions such as the Tervuren Royal Museum for Central Africa in Belgium or the Institut national de l’audiovisuel in France. We will also search out materials held by private individuals and institutions in Rwanda and the Great Lakes Region of Africa.
In addition, IRIBA CENTER will be the Rwandan home for a unique archive of 350 hours of video footage accumulated over the ten years Anne filmed in Rwanda, covering the reintegration of perpetrators and survivors in a single community, and the three years of local genocide trials held there. Recognized by scholars internationally as the only such long-term documentation of a post-genocide community, this footage will become part of Rwanda’s historical legacy.
The response to our plans for IRIBA CENTER has been tremendous:
• The French Embassy in Kigali has allocated a building for us—this is raw space that will need refurbishing, but it is large, airy and centrally located;
• Bophana has agreed to grant us a free license to their proprietary data management software, with guidance and support in our initial year;
• Several major international donors have already expressed an interest in contributing to our effort.
So why are we turning to you on Kickstarter? In order to qualify for these resources, we have months of work to do. The $40,000 we hope to raise will help cover costs such as legal, administrative and specialist consulting fees as well as other development expenses and the ability to devote all of our energy and resources to getting the project off the ground.
We are aiming for IRIBA CENTER to open its doors in 2012. To do so, we will need to begin hiring and training core staff as early as our official announcement.
But Kickstarter is an all or nothing funding platform, so if we don’t reach our fixed goal by August 21, 2011, we’ll lose all of your contributions (which will revert to you)! So, please join us! Help us make IRIBA CENTER a reality by participating what you can and spreading the word far and wide!
Bio: Anne Aghion’s work as a filmmaker has brought her to Rwanda for over a decade. Her GACACA FILMS, a series of three one-hours and the feature film MY NEIGHBOR MY KILLER have earned her numerous honors, among them an Emmy Award, UNESCO Fellini Prize, a Nestor Almendros Award for Courage in Filmmaking from the Human Rights Watch Film Festival, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Two of the shorter films were shown on television networks including Sundance Channel, Arte and more than half a dozen networks around the world. MY NEIGHBOR MY KILLER was one of the rare documentaries shown in Official Selection at the Cannes Film Festival. The films have screened for tens of thousands of Rwandans to date. http://www.gacacafilms.com„