Tecmerin. Journal of Audiovisual Essays

Issue 8 – 2021 (2)


Andrés Sanjurjo García (Universitat Pompeu Fabra/Universidade da Coruña)

How to cite this article: Sanjurjo García, A. (2021) Piola. Tecmerin. Journal of Audiovisual Essays, 8, 2021(2). ISSN: 2659-4269

The representation of poverty has always been one of the great topics under study, especially from Latin America; Texts such as ¿Qué es la pornomiseria? written by Luis Ospina and Carlos Mayolo, Towards a Third Cinema by Fernando Solanas and Octavio Getino or The Aesthetics of Hunger by Glauber Rocha are some of these examples. These revolutionary writings sought an uprising of cinematographic language to get away from the capitalist claws of film production. However, they ignored the role of the filmmaker as a producer.

To date, the few studies on how characters are paid in documentary films have been limited to the controversial and sterile debate of whether to pay or not to pay them, but not on the question of how much they were paid and in what ways.  For example, Chilean filmmaker Patricio Guzmán ´(2011) defends that documentary characters can never be paid because this fact would transform their relationship with these works and they would act to please or get more money.

If, as Didi-Huberman (2013) states, images take a position: What position does a filmmaker take when confronted with his characters’ poverty? And what is a poor individual? Where do we trace the limit to define poverty? It is precisely for this reason that we will ask ourselves, as Walter Benjamin (2015) did, about the author’s position as producer: “what is the position of a work with regard to the production relations of its time? and he would add: what is his/her position within them?”

Through some memories of my parents’ lives, the discarding of an unfinished first film, interviews with filmmakers and a selection of images from the history of cinema, Piola demands of herself and the authors a didactic behavior to reflect on our place in terms of class struggle.


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Tecmerin. Journal of Audiovisual Essays
ISSN: 2659-4269
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Universidad Carlos III de Madrid