Video

VOLTA VOLTA: An Artist’s Statement

Erick Msumanje and Alexis Hithe

Collective memory as an essential component to the survival of African people, enslaved and brutalized, dispersed and disoriented, finds an expression in VOLTA VOLTA. This expression begins quietly, gently, as we see images of Black bodies engaged in ritual spaces, such as young women dressed in white for a church ceremony, and ritual exchanges, like a man shaving himself in a small handheld mirror. These moments of the first half of the film are treated with a delicacy and patience to match their reverence, allowing for the viewer to sit through any restlessness that surfaces as the camera observes with a steady gaze, and to arrive at a place of knowing.

Click this link to access Msumanje and Hithe’s full artist statement.

Erick Msumanje is an award-winning hybrid filmmaker and visual artist. He holds a Masters in Fine Arts from the University of San Diego. His work primarily focuses on telling meditative and poetic stories that blur the lines between fiction and non-fiction. Currently, he is a Ph.D. student in the Film and Digital Media program at University of California, Santa Cruz.

Story-making and history-telling, Alexis Hithe creates conceptual and experimental work that focuses on the Black experience and its imaginings. A graduate of University of California, San Diego’s Visual Arts program, Alexis draws inspiration from her childhood in the Mojave Desert of southern California and takes a non-traditional approach to filmmaking; she believes that truth emerges somewhere between doing and dreaming, and practices radical patience as a part of her art process.

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