(𝒓𝒆)𝑹𝒊𝒕𝒆𝒔 𝒐𝒇 𝑷𝒂𝒔𝒔𝒂𝒈𝒆 is a special anthology published as part of the Toronto Reel Asian Film International Film Festival’s 25th anniversary celebrations, and a follow-up to 𝘙𝘦𝘦𝘭 𝘈𝘴𝘪𝘢𝘯: 𝘈𝘴𝘪𝘢𝘯 𝘊𝘢𝘯𝘢𝘥𝘢 𝘰𝘯 𝘚𝘤𝘳𝘦𝘦𝘯 (published in 2007 for Reel Asian’s 10th anniversary).
Drawing inspiration from the vibrant and kinetic histories of independent publishing in Asian diaspora, the anthology features a range of critical responses from Asian Canadian media artists on the contributions, maturations and evolving sensibilities of Asian Canadian film and media creation.
The anthology adopts its title from “Rites of Passage”, a Centrepiece programme at the 2016 Reel Asian Film Festival that featured a series of commissioned experimental video, animation and documentary works accompanied by a live musical score performed by a temporarily reunited Obhijou.
Drawing on these intersections of interdisciplinary, form-traversing dialogue, (𝒓𝒆)𝑹𝒊𝒕𝒆𝒔 𝒐𝒇 𝑷𝒂𝒔𝒔𝒂𝒈𝒆 looks to the future of Asian Canadian media arts in the larger Canadian creative ecosystem.
Besides featuring the perspectives of multiple generations of filmmakers, the anthology will also expand to include conversations around experimental video art, digital forms such as VR and AR, and new and alternative media arts.
Reel Asian’s offices are located on Dish with One Spoon territory, the treaty lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit, and the traditional territory of the Anishnaabe, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat nations.
As Asian diaspora to Canada, we all benefit from the Canadian government’s legacy of colonial violence against Indigenous nations. We recognize the abundance of positionalities, histories, communities, and relationships as an “Asian diaspora”, and affirm experiences both shared and specific. We wish to reckon openly and critically with our complex journeys through imperialism and complicity in structures of white supremacy.
This anthology is both a celebration of and an inquiry into the breakthroughs and limitations of our community’s imagination. We hope to question and push each other relationally toward a freer and better future for all peoples on these lands and waters that we rely on to live, and commit to solidarities with the inhabitants and stewards of Turtle Island.
We take lead from and support Indigenous peoples who are exercising their sovereignty and working towards justice and freedoms. May we be moved and held accountable to boldly envision what our present realities ask of us, and what our future worlds must look like.
This project was made possible by the Canada Council for the Arts, Public Outreach program.