BR>International festival of underwater film and video in its fourth edition took place in a small but old Slovenian city Slovenske Konjice. In three days (between 26th and 28th of February) nearly thousand of participants enjoyed in a great variety of underwater films, video, children’s paintings, great underwater photography’s and excellent music performed by young talents.
“Sprehodi pod morjem” should become a first Slovenian underwater film back in 1952 but destiny made different decision. Camera was floated by seawater and everything that left was a book with the same name. After nearly sixty year’s prof. Dusan Kuscer and Marjan Richter, the pioneers of Slovenian underwater photography and film allowed us to use the title for our humble event and that is the story how the festival was born. Actually it was born under the patronage of successful international symposium Diving AST which was shut down two years ago and in that moment the festival became “adult”.
First three editions were mostly retrospectives of the best titles of Belgrade film festival but this year we took first steps to make our own program. The schedule is quite simple and a main goal is to avoid commercialization like happened to bigger and older festivals. We decided that we will dedicate first two days to children and youngsters and only two evenings for adults which were good recipe for fun. On Friday night we open the photo exhibition with a concert and on Saturday evening we present nine films from world latest productions in two parts which started with one guest in each part.
During brake we served some domestic food and local vine and atmosphere becomes perfect.
Simple and efficient some would say but the point is that we were lucky with quests. If last year the stars of the event were three photographers (Macao from Cuba, Arne Hodalic and Miha Matavz from Slovenia), director of Golden Dolphin and great accordionist Borut Mori than this year we made a small step forward. Our guest were great names like founder of FMISM (Festival Mondial De L´image Sous-Marine), Mr Daniel Mercier and three great photographers with three exhibitions, which were specialities first time seen in Adriatic region. Slovenian Borut Furlan presented Black & Blue series of underwater perfection among which was first ever seen the 210 cm wide and 70 cm high underwater panorama. His colleague Marjan Richter presented more than fifty years old expedition to Ethiopia back in 1960 which was mother of all latest expeditions and example how to make research and exploration in the same time. Author of the third and the most exciting part of the exhibition was Anatoly Beloshchin from Russia with Nude & Fashion series which knocked down present crowd and made great impression. Anatoly Beloshchin and his model Tatiana Smelko were without doubt stars of this year’s event. Saturdays evening was dedicated to underwater films and between nine works from nine different countries we picked only one which received the first Grand prix (Chrystal seahorse) of “Sprehodi pod morjem” ever. The winner was Jose Lachat’s short film Sinistre. The decision was tuff because the last hunters from Steve Lichtag were right behind the winner. During festival we received nearly 150 children’s paintings and we picked three most beautiful (decision was hard because all the paintings were beautiful as well) and rewarded authors with small seahorses and that was final part of the festival. Next year we are bringing back the ninth edition of international symposium Diving AST, but this time as a part of 5th International festival “Sprehodi pod morjem”. The event will take place between 1st and 3rd of February 2013 and we will do our best that it will bring only art and joy.
Production & design: Creativ, Novi mediji d.o.o.