Viscult 2018: Call for Films


The annual Viscult Film Festival of anthropological and ethnographic documentaries will be held 24.–26.10.2018 in Joensuu, Finland. The theme of Viscult 2018 is Good Life.

What is good life and how do ethnographic films depict and discuss its forms and aspirations? How are desires for a good life socially structured and played out in different cultures and groups? Who has access to a good life?

Conceptions about the ingredients for a good life vary. Cultural models of a good life find their basis in social organizations and power structures, gender, economy, religion, and the environment. The foundation for a good life is often fragile. How are prerequisites for a good life protected and secured in different situations?

Does culture change due to aspirations for a good life or do changes in culture and ways of life condition such goals? How does modernization or climate change, for example, affect the prerequisites for a good life? How do individually and collectively constructed conceptions of a good life match with each other, and what kind of tensions may emerge? What kind of moral and ethical questions link up with desires for a good life and with alienation thereof?

Viscult calls out for new and recent ethnographic films that deal with the prerequisites for a good life and their fulfilment in cultures around the world.

We are now inviting documentary filmmakers to send in preview versions of their recent films relevant to the theme of Good Life. A specialist jury will watch the received films for selection in the Viscult program. The organizing committee looks forward to inviting selected directors or producers to Joensuu, to attend the Festival in person and to introduce themselves and their work to the Festival audience. However, invitations will be dependent on the festival’s funding situation.

The main program of Viscult 2018 will be streamed live as a real-time Internet broadcast, so the events can be followed from across the world. Therefore the selection process will prefer those films that can be streamed. The organizers also reserve the right to use trailers and other promotional materials of the selected films in the advertising and marketing of Viscult.

The films should be submitted by March 15, 2018.

Viscult focuses on anthropological and ethnographic documentaries. The program consists of film screenings, student-focused workshops and plenary lectures. The events are free for all.

For the preview by the festival jury, please send a link to streaming services, preferably Vimeo or YouTube. A download link to Dropbox or similar is also accepted. Please also send us the password to access the film, if needed. Please make sure that the film file is available for the Viscult jury until the end of June.

Viscult is organized by the North Karelian Regional Film Association together with Karelia University of Applied Sciences and the Cultural Research section of the School of Humanities at the University of Eastern Finland. Associated festival partner is the student association Nefa-Joensuu.