Tecmerin. Journal of Audiovisual Essays

Issue 11 – 2023 (1)

Issue 11 of Tecmerin. Journal of Audiovisual Essays presents a variety of audiovisual works stemming from different geographical and critical traditions and approaches. Perhaps, the common thread that brings all these pieces together is the importance of collective and personal memories as tools to codify a set of complementary and, at times, contradictory meanings. Through the analysis of several aesthetic, thematic, technological, generic, identity and corporal themes, the featured video essays turn into ideological interventions in the contemporary mediascape. 

In this issue, we are also proud to launch a new section in collaboration with Ariel Avissar: Screen Stars Dictionary. Our idea is to continue this project in successive issues, publishing several pieces that aim to design a transnational and multidisciplinary dictionary stardom. In the near future, we will publish CFPs to open this project to the international artistic and creative community.

 In “From the Archive”, Carolina Fernández Castrillo explores hacktivism as a creative practice, through an interview with remarkable Italian artist Paolo Cirio. Our colleague also analyzes several of his most outstanding works.

Finally, like in each issue, we are showcasing the works of students from the Media program at Universidad Carlos III (Madrid). In this case, the video essays have been made within modules taught by Mercedes Álvarez San Román, Farshad Zahedi and Vicente Rodríguez Ortega

Being Dolls (or Not): Spinning mothers and daughters in Elena Ferrante’s adaptations

Barbara Zecchi (University of Massachusetts Amherst) –  04:35

This video essay explores two adaptations of Elena Ferrante, Maggie Gyllenhaal’s The Lost Daughter, and the TV series My Brilliant Friend, that delve into the intricate and often conflicting mother-daughter relationship. The spiral motion in the multiscreen, coupled with the lyrics of the song ‘La bambola,’ and my mother’s voice, conveys the cyclical nature of the emotional struggles. The constant spinning and turning of the images underscore the fluctuating and intricate nature of this complex bond.

Keywords: Adaptations, deformative criticism, Ferrante, spiral, motherhood

Memories of It

Kathleen Loock (Universidad Leibniz de Hannover) – 07:30

This video essay creatively explores the interplay between individual and collective memory, combining the maker’s personal recollections with social and historical analysis. It reflects on the haunting power of the 1990 film adaptation of Stephen King’s horror novel It and how it resonates with the maker’s memories of the German Reunification, which she comes to recognize as a shared historical experience of her generation.

Palabras clave: cultural memory, videographic memory work, film remake, generation, German reunification

Film Culture and Family Memory: “Las Bardem”

Luis Cemillán (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid) – 14:23

Through various studies on family memory, this video essay analyzes the work that professionals such as Matilde Muñoz Sampedro, Pilar, Mónica, and María Bardem carry out in the preservation and legitimization of their family saga, conceptualizing it as film legacy. 

Palabras clave: Family memory, collective memory, heritage, Spanish cinema. 

Illness is a Body that Feels: A Crippled Look at Pedro Lemebel and João Pedro Rodrigues

Javier Acevedo Nieto (Universidad de Salamanca) – 17:04

The performances of Pedro Lemebel and the cinema of João Pedro Rodrigues offer identity-based looks at the queer body and the idea of illness. This video essay seeks to establish a genealogy between both works based on concepts such as glitch identity, crippled theory and the work of Montserrat Roig.

Palabras clave: film analysis, crip theory, illness, glitch identity, queer identity


Kevin L. Ferguson (College, City University of New York) – Duración: 09:41

This video essay explores the affective aesthetics of the contemporary cyclorama: a curved, cornerless background used in advertising, music videos, and cinema. While 19th-century cycloramas featured realistically painted, historical panoramic scenes, their use in 20th-century moving images often has the opposite effect, isolating characters in void-like white backgrounds not unlike the blankness of an unprojected cinema screen.

Palabras clave: cyclorama, music video, science fiction, void, whiteness

Warrior girls against Necropower. Women´s empowerment in Mexican cinema through child characters

Violeta Alarcón Zayas (UDIMA) – 14:19

This video essay analyzes the discursive elements in three contemporary Mexican films. The protagonists of these films are women who play rebellious and empowered roles against “gore capitalism” (Valencia, 2010) and “femi-genocides” (Segato, 2016).

Palabras clave: Self-defense, Mexican cinema, feminicides, underage, feminism.

From the Archive

Hacktivism as an artistic practice: visual evidence for social change


The intersection between activism and digital culture finds its most recent expression in hacktivism to give visibility and signal injustices in favour of social change. Non-violence and online transgression are some of the distinctive elements of hacktivist practices that, applied to the artistic field, result in projects in which the aesthetic and ethical use of information constitutes the main material and artistic medium. The figure of the activist hacker is especially attractive when placed in an undefined domain between the role of hero and villain, an uncomfortable agent due to his unorthodox methods in defense of fundamental rights.

An interview with Paolo Cirio.

Curated by Carolina Fernández Castrillo (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

New section

Screen Stars Dictionary

In the first edition of this new section, the following Stars are seen under Dictionary entries:

– Julie Andrews / VOICE (Jemma Saunders) – Roberto Cobo / RARE (Catherine Grant) – Tom Cruise / MASK (Ariel Avissar) – Lola Flores / STRENGHT (Asier Gil) – Sophia Loren / ETERNA (Barbara Zecchi) – Dean Martin / CALM (Will DiGravio) – Natalia Oreiro / TRANSFER (Jiří Anger y Veronika Hanáková) – Léa Seydoux / TRANSPARENT (Libertad Gills) – Yakusho Kōji / CHARACTER (Colleen Laird) – Barbara Streisand – Beyoncé (Jaap Kooijman)

Student Showcase

El deseo de las deseadas: cine de mujeres en el Norte de África y Oriente Medio

Verónica Antoñanzas Martínez, Ana Diéguez Galaz & Sara Florido Suárez (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

The Filmic Styles of Yorgos Lanthimos

Aya El Marji Ghostine, Clara Sofie Lundblad & Sara Mai Ortiz de Manuel (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

El documental

Daniela Coira, Fèlix Tallada y Salvador Rodríguez (Universidad Carlos III de Madrid)

Tecmerin. Journal of Audiiovisual Essays
ISSN: 2659-4269
© Grupo de Investigación Tecmerin
Universidad Carlos III de Madrid