During the last 18 months this project developed and tested an innovative remote participatory visual research design using participants’ smartphones, in order to respond to the challenges involved in methodological co-production and participatory action research during emergencies, when the usual face-to-face approach becomes impossible or undesirable. We brought together researchers and filmmakers in the UK and Colombia and worked with 24 women directors in Bogotá and Medellín, Colombia, working together remotely on participatory filming to investigate issues of displacement, how women are affected by the Colombian conflict, the challenges they face in the cities, but also their solidarity and activism when remaking their urban lives.
The result is a collaboratively produced film called ‘Volviendo a Vivir’ (‘Back to Life’)that tells the stories of those 24 displaced and conflict-affected women directors. Through their voices and gazes, it illustrates how they have resisted the different forms of forced displacement and violence that many experience(d) and live(d) through in the country.
With this film they provide an account of their experiences, learning, perseverance and empowerment; from moments of displacement, in the defence of their rights in the cities of Medellín and Bogotá, and in their current negotiations and aspirations of their urban futures. By sharing their pasts and urban presents, they aim to unite their voices to show the reality of many Colombian families with the hope that their (her)stories will not be repeated in next generations.
The film was produced by the women, who used their smartphones for filming. Over a period of 12 months, researchers, filmmakers and the women participants met in weekly online workshops to train women in filming techniques, review and discuss film material and make editorial decisions.
See here the trailer for the final documentary ‘Volviendo a Vivir’ as well as a short film produced last year ‘Mujeres en pie de lucha del campo a la ciudad’.
Volviendo a Vivir Trailer
Mujeres en pie de lucha del campo a la ciudad’