Golden Jubilee (2021)
Golden Jubilee Suneil Sanzgiri India/USA16mm > digital19 min2021
This final chapter of the trilogy moves with a sense of palpable urgency. It underlines both the losses in our personal quests for repair in the shadow of imperial legacies and compels us to look further than the ancestral in our shared pursuit of collective liberation. – Jemma Desai
What is liberation when so much has already been taken? Who has come for more? Golden Jubilee, the third film in a series of works about memory, diaspora, and decoloniality, takes as its starting point scenes of the filmmaker’s father navigating a virtual rendering of their ancestral home in Goa, India, created using the same technologies of surveillance that mining companies use to map locations for iron ore in the region. A tool for extraction and exploitation becomes a method for preservation. The father, sparked by a memory of an encounter as a child, inhabits the voice of a spirit known locally as Devchar, whose task is to protect the workers, farmers, and the once communal lands of Goa. Protection from what the filmmaker asks? Sanzgiri’s signature blend of 16mm sequences, 3D renderings, direct animation, and desktop aesthetics are vividly employed in this lush and ghostly look at questions of heritage, culture, and the remnants of history.
This film is available to stream globally.
This film is co-presented with Spectacle Theatre.
Image credits: all artworks, stills, and portraits courtesy of the artist © Suneil Sanzgiri.
about the artist
Suneil Sanzgiri (India/USA) is an artist, researcher, and filmmaker born in Dallas, Texas in 1989. His films, videos, essays, and installations investigate how systems of oppression are informed and reinforced by trauma, history, and memory, often contending with questions of identity, heritage, culture, and decolonization in South Asia. Following a similar path as that of filmmaker Harun Farocki, after graduating Sanzgiri worked briefly as a journalist at NowThis. There he produced hundreds of videos covering topics including police brutality, racial justice, and Indigenous and Palestinian struggle. He received a Masters of Science in Art, Culture and Technology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (2017). His recent films At Home But Not At Home (2019) and Letter From A Far Off Country (2020) have been exhibited widely at festivals, museums, galleries, and grassroots venues internationally, including The Block Museum, Asia Art Archives in America, Iowa City International Documentary Film Festival, Pioneer Works, International Film Festival Rotterdam, IndieLisboa, New York Film Festival, Hong Kong International Film Festival, e-flux, Viennale, Camden International Film Festival, Punto de Vista Festival, Royal College of Art, Berwick Film & Media Art Festival, 25FPS Festival, Los Angeles Film Forum, Sheffield Documentary Festival, Pravo Ljudski Film Festival, Berlin Critics Week, Onion City Film Festival, and Beijing International Short Film Festival. He is the recipient of Best International Film Award, Open City Documentary Festival; Best Experimental Film Award, BlackStar Film Festival; and a Special Jury Mention, European Media Arts Festival (2021). He co-programmed Flaherty NYC (2020–2021), and was named one of Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film (2021). He is a MacDowell Colony Fellow, and artist-in-residence, Pioneer Works (2021). Sanzgiri is currently working on his debut feature, focusing on the bonds of solidarity uniting resistance movements in India and Africa during opposition to Portuguese Colonial rule. He lives and works in New York.