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© Aurélie Lamachère

Carte Blanche Alice Diop – Reformuler

A black woman, naked, looks at herself in a mirror. Does she discover herself? Does she recognize herself? Is it an encounter with herself? Perhaps, at long last. Alice Diop, captivated by the photograph by Zanele Muholi, puts words to her own intimate and political journey. In this carte blanche, which opens the second part of the Festival d'Automne, the filmmaker invites an assembly of women with whom to collectively think together and to define or reformulate themselves.


Although silent, images speak to us. The photograph taken, by the South African artist Zanele Muholi, of a black woman, lying naked on a bed, holding in her hands a round mirror in which she stares at herself with strange intensity, had this effect on Alice Diop. This photograph, handed to her by a dear friend, became the symbol of an underground revolution for her. From then on, it became a matter of "daring to bare your flesh, no longer accepting to be defined by those around us and of looking inside ourselves". But searching from deep inside ourselves as a woman, a black woman, inevitably has the effect of "exhuming and questioning what the violence of History has been able to do to the intimate", explains the filmmaker who won the Silver Lion award at the Mostra Venice Film Festival for her feature film Saint-Omer. In this carte blanche, Alice Diop calls upon the women who accompany her in her personal and political path. This assembly of filmmakers, poets, writers, dancers, singers and researchers opens a space for collective thinking about a world in which the voices of those concerned count. A world in which we can choose our own terms, and self-determine, reformulate ourselves.