FROM TRASH TO TREASURE: turning negatives into positives in Lesotho
From erosion to overgrazing to enduring poverty, the people of Lesotho—a highland country surrounded by South Africa—face a variety of difficult challenges. Yet grassroots communities in the country also exhibit tremendous resourcefulness and creativity. In particular, a wealth of artists have mastered a talent for resurrection, developing the skill to creatively turn negatives into positives: Designers who turn discarded trash into beautiful jewelry, clothes, rugs. Filmmakers who turn tragedy into artistic expressions of resilience and compassion. Musicians who write songs to save the environment. In this short, Cultures of Resistance Films profiles a variety of these inventive creators, introducing viewers to a fascinating cast of local residents who are using art as a means of communicating a communal desire for positive change.
Director: Iara Lee
Country: United States
Director Biography: Iara Lee, a Brazilian of Korean descent, is an activist, filmmaker, and founder/director of the Cultures of Resistance Network, an organization that promotes global solidarity and supports agitators, educators, farmers, and artists to build a more just and peaceful world through creative resistance and nonviolent action. Her films address topics that are often overlooked by the mainstream media--including indigenous rights, food sovereignty, and environmental justice--and are frequently set in Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America. They have shown across the world at events ranging from screenings in refugee camps and community centers to debuts at the Berlinale and Sundance festivals.