A film made by Arno Peeters and Iris Honderdos. Every time I watch their films, I am fully satisfied both mentally and spiritually. How can we remain indifferent while watching the film about nature in Sri Lanka or the film about the art installation named CreDogma? The film Los Purus tells us about the art project carried out in the village of Canchabamba, near the town of San Luis, Peru. Arno Peeters is, first of all, a sound artist. We could fairly feel it while watching the film about Sri Lanka. There is no narrator’s voice. Any human voice could have spoilt the genuine perception. Arno’s sensitive microphone lets us hear and listen to “…every sound or voice made by different insects, birds, lizards, squirrels, and water fauna, … the music like the sound of the water stream. We can also hear monks chanting somewhere. Their chanting is mixed with the sounds of nature.” In the film Los Purus, Arno’s electronic microphone seems to be switched off. We do not hear any sound. We do not hear the sound of the car engine or the sounds made by domestic animals in the village. We do not even hear the natives’ voices. All we can hear is the narrator’s voice in the name of Iris. And that’s the right solution…Iris is trying her best to collect impressions, to discover the soul and spirit of the routine everyday life of the peaceful people living in a remote village at the altitude of 3500 meters above sea level. Great was the welcoming ceremony in the schoolyard. It was like official ceremonies welcoming presidents or kings. The head of the school, teachers, students, and their parents were happy to meet not one-hour tourists with their cameras but Iris and Arno who had come to live with them for several weeks. As the film goes on, there seems to exist a contrast in that village: the cleanness and cared for the environment of the school and poor household amenities…very often no electric power, no Internet connection, no TV. They can’t take shower whenever they want but their souls are so pure, and they are so helpful to one another that there are no arguments in the village, and the most surprising thing is that their children never cry. The whole village seems to work for the school. And little by little, an idea comes to Iris for the final art project: that is to use purus containing coca juice. This juice is believed to give people positive energy. Iris’s idea was to empty the purus and put folded sheets of paper with the children’s hopes for the future. The parents were also asked to write down their own dreams for the future. Iris’s idea about the final product of the art project was great. It excellently fitted the peaceful and loving atmosphere of the village. Iris says that Arno wanted to find an old folk lullaby sung by the mothers of Canchabanba but he couldn’t find any. The only music which could be considered harmonic to the spirit of the village life was played by a violinist, a flutist, and a harp player. We can guess from Iris’s narration that having no lullaby is not an imperfection. The routine of everyday life in the village of Cachabanba has all the components of the best lullaby. The farewell lunch party given by the school students and their parents in the forest where …sunlight falling diagonally between the trunks, making stripes on the soft ground… is real proof of it. This was a poem.
Thank you for the creation of this film, dear Iris Honderdos and Arno Peeters!