Films at the 4th Dharamshala International Film Festival

The fourth edition of the Dharamshala International Film festival is underway (Nov 5-8) in Dharamshala, a town in North India, known for being home to the Dalai Lama and thousands of Tibetan exiles.

In the last four years DiFF has fast established itself as one of the fastest growing and most interesting film festivals in India and in that region of Asia. Started by filmmaker couple Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam, their film selection focuses mostly on indies from India and rest of the world. The festival showcases excellent selection of recent independent films from all over the world, featuring both narratives and documentaries. The festival also hosts panels and discussions with filmmakers and artists who are invited to this otherwise quiet town in the hills.

The diversity and the creativity of the festival programming rivals any major International film festival, not just in India but anywhere in the world.

For this year’s full program, visit

Some notable films this year are:

The Wolfpack
The Concrete Night
The Look of Silence
The Tale of Iya
Zero Motivation
Wild Women – Gentle Beasts


Heart of a Dog, a film by Laurie Andersen


HEART OF A DOG – This month’s must watch film now showing at the Film Forum NYC

HEART OF A DOG (HEART) is a personal essay by renowned performance artist Laurie Anderson that weaves together childhood memories, video diaries, philosophical musings on data collection, surveillance culture and the Buddhist conception of the afterlife, and heartfelt tributes to the artists, writers, musicians and thinkers who inspire her. Fusing her own witty, inquisitive narration with original violin compositions, hand-drawn animation, 8mm home movies and artwork culled from exhibitions past and present, Anderson creates a hypnotic, collage-like visual language out of the raw materials of her life and art, examining how stories are constructed and told — and how we use them to make sense of our lives.

Beginning with the dream sequence that opens the film, HEART creates a visual language out of the many linked stories comprising its 75-minute running time that is akin to dream logic. “The first story is told from the perspective of my dream self. The first words in the movie are ‘This is my dream body,'” says Anderson. “So the narrator says right away that these stories come from a different time and place.” But the film is as much about fractured stories as it is about the construction of stories.

Heart of a Dog fuses the raw materials of Anderson’s life and art into a greater narrative about love and loss, life and death, and the passage of time. She segues into her beloved dog Lolabelle’s journey into the afterlife — or the Bardo, as it is known in The Tibetan Book of the Dead — depicted in a series of charcoal drawings that were originally shown in the artist’s 2011 show “Forty-Nine Days in the Bardo” at the Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia. The multimedia exhibition included some of the same themes in HEART, including love and death, the many levels of dreaming, and illusion.


Transcendental Gonkar Gyatso


Wall Street International article by Raffaele Quattrone

There is a bridge able not only to connect but also to create a dialogue linking East and West, spirituality and matter in a great harmony. It is the bridge in the construction of which many of us are engaged as well as many visual artists among which we can mention Kimsooja, Shirin Neshat, Wang Qingsong, Takashi Murakami, Imran Qureshi, Francesco Simeti, Alessandro Moreschini, Gonkar Gyatso. About the practice of Gonkar Gyatso I dwelt on several occasions including an interview published here on the pages of the Wall Street International where I defined Gyatso, English-American artist born in Tibet, a “post-global ethnographer” interested in developing the ties between traditional Buddhist iconography and Western pop culture, Eastern spiritual tradition and Western materialistic culture paying to both the same care and attention.

Read the full article at the Wall Street International / Art

BIOGRAPHY – Born in Tibet in 1961, Gyatso studied traditional Chinese ink and brush painting in Beijing, Thangka painting in Dharmsala and fine arts in London. Gyatso was the recipient of a Leverhelm Fellowship in 2003 as an artist in residence at Pitt Rivers Museum in Oxford. He is the founder of the Sweet Tea House, a contemporary Tibetan Art Gallery in London. His work has been internationally exhibited in galleries and museums, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York City), The Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), the Tel Aviv Museum of Art (Israel), The Institute of Modern Art (Australia), the Rubin Museum of Art (New York) the Chinese National Art Gallery (Beijing), the Glasgow Gallery of Modern Art (Scotland), the Courtauld Institute of Art (London), Burger Collection (Switzerland), the Wereldmuseum Rotterdam (Netherlands), Queensland Art Gallery and Gallery of Modern Art (Australia), Colorado University Art Museum and Collections (USA), the 53rd Venice Biennial (Italy), the 6th Asia Pacific Triennial in Brisbane (Australia) and the 17th Sydney Biennale. His work is held in numerous public and private collections around the world.