Rise Again

 

Still image Rise Again

 »Rise Again« focuses on a number of men, asylum seekers from Afghanistan. Discovering and inhabiting the wood proximate to the asylum center in which they live, they step outside of their prescribed roles as refugees and engage in voluntary (social) activities within this oasis, surrounded by highways at the edge of town. By combining allegorical imagery with martial arts elements, played and documentary scenes, the video develops a narrative structure in which these men appear in enfolding transformation. Moving between these registers, they resonate different roles and meanings, connect and articulate different historical and geographical scenarios, rather than embodying any in particular. Swinging between familiar media and cinematic imagery, bringing to mind soldiers, refugees, victims or adventurers on a group expedition the process of de/familiarization takes place. Except perhaps for ‘Bruce Lee’, being one of the Afghan refugees himself, whose likeness with the Hollywood hero is embraced (rather than staged) thus leaving the viewer wonder whether he is acting a role or pursuing his daily training routine. »Rise again« was commissioned by Frieze Foundation for Frieze Film 2011.