Our Film Program
SCINEMA 2008 Festival
In 2008, SCINEMA delivered 8 programs of new science film, with a tour by international multimedia artist Peter McLeish.
Making Sense of the World Around Us:
Seeing-Feeling + The Colour of
Sound + Thunderheads (102mins)
Where Do We Come From?
Waste = Food
Peter’s film titled Polaris Terrarum comes from the Latin - meaning Polar Earth. His film is an imaginative journey of images that travels through the ionosphere (high in the earth’s atmosphere) from one Polar Region to the next -exploring atmospheric disturbances caused by global warming. The images demonstrate a view from a high flying aircraft or Space Shuttle. The imagery also chart the shrinking size and changing colour of the polar region as seen from views from up above.
Filmmaker Peter McLeish is in the process of collaborating with scientists and science teams to further develop this project.
Catch Peter’s talk at the following locations
Aug 12 at 6.30pm - University of New South
Peter has also been awarded the use of the COFA (College of Fine Arts) Flat at the University of New South Wales, Sydney during his stay in Australia.
Peter McLeish is a painter /multi-media artist / filmmaker with a Diplôme d'études Collegiales - Arts Plastiques, Bachelors of Fine Arts & a Masters of Fine Arts degrees.
Peter had received
over twenty various types of grants/awards and/or support from different
branches of the Canadian and/or Quebec Governments between -1991 to
2008.From 2003 to 2008, his participation in a number of the events was
undertaken with the assistance from:
Peter will also give film presentations and lectures in New Zealand at:
-Massey University in
Auckland August 26th
His film presentations in New Zealand are with the assistance from SCINEMA and support undertaken by the Canadian High Commission in Wellington.
His work and research has appeared in many international forums in museums/centers such as the Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum in Chicago-United States, The National Museum of Australia in Canberra-Australia, The Australian Centre for the Moving Image (ACMI) in Melbourne-Australia, the Spazio Oberdan in Milan- Italy , Sala Emilio Saraco / Neuquén Museum of Fine Arts in Neuquén–Argentina, the Ferens Art Gallery in Hull-United Kingdom and recently at the Carnegie Science Center in Pittsburgh-United States.
He had previously explored -two psychological themes of masked and unmasked portraits from 1991 to 1995. From 1995 to 1997, he developed a several series of works exploring light and movement in underwater environments.
He exhibited his first large- scale art & science installation (based on a Glory -a circular rainbow) titled The Glory Project was presented at Star Theatre in the Planetarium de Montréal from 1998 to 2000.
Since 2001, Peter has been involved in an art & science collaboration based on Red Sprites with renown Meteorologist (President of the American Meteorological Society-2005; President-2007-08 of the National Council of Industrial Meteorologists) Walter A. Lyons. This collaboration eventually led to Walter A. Lyons receiving a National Science Foundation grant regarding the collaboration and subsequent creation of Lyons’s DVD titled The Hundred Year Hunt for Red Sprites and interactive website. Peter created the artwork in the The Hundred Year Hunt for Red Sprites as well as his companion-six minute film titled Lightning’s Angels. Since 2002, both films have been presented at many major International art & science symposiums, conferences, media festivals, science film festivals, science & art museums/centres and planetariums all over the world. Peter’s continued research subsequently led him to an additional collaboration with Dr. Colin Price from the Department of Geophysics and Planetary Science, Tel Aviv University who was working on sprite research within the MEIDEX mission from a ground station with the ill-fated crew of the Columbia in 2003.
Since 2007, Peter has been working on Polaris Terrarum with the collaboration from scientists and science data from around the world.
The 44-minute documentary, ‘Wild
Tasmania’, exposes the plight of the endangered Tasmanian Wedge-tailed
Eagle, an animal caught in the middle of the logging and pulp mill
debate currently raging in Tasmania. This magnificent bird has lived in
the forests of Tasmania for millennia, but its habitat is undergoing
rapid change. The ancient old-growth trees, not just an ideal home for
the eagle, have recently found favour with humans as a source of timber,
wood chips and profitable pulp. "This is a very important issue," says
Jasper Montana, the 23 year old co-director, camera-person and editor,
"the film really shows what's at stake for this magnificent creature.”
About the filmmaker: Wild Tasmania is Jasper's second film to play in SCINEMA - his student production Remember the Tritons won our 2005 student film festival. Jasper has completed degrees in Science and Creative Arts at The University of Melbourne, and hopes to continue to produce science and nature documentaries for television in the future.
The outstanding quality of Australia’s science and factual filmmakers was on display in Brisbane as the SCINEMA Festival of Science Film announced the winners of its 2008 Festival last night.
“We were thrilled by the high calibre of films we had to choose from this year” Festival Jury Chairman Wilson da Silva said as he announced the winners at a rooftop party at Queensland Museum South Bank to celebrate the close of a successful National Science Week
Scottish film The Colour of Sound took out Best Film “for the engaging way it conveyed a whole tapestry of science,” da Silva said to the crowd.
Local filmmaker Vickie Guest was on-hand to accept her award for organ-donation doco Over My Dead Body, and told Festival guests she was thrilled to have her film recognised.
Australia’s ABC TV took out three categories in the internationally competitive film festival, which received over 150 entries from 31 countries.
ABC producer Richard Smith was announced as Best Director for his study of the journey of oil from its birth in the prehistoric past to its role in our greenhouse future, Crude, while Rory McGuinness took Best Cinematography for The Big Blue and producer/director Klaus Toft took the gong for Best Science Television for Thunderheads.
Interestingly, The Big Blue and Thunderheads were among the final films produced by ABC TV’s Natural History Unit, which was closed by the national broadcaster earlier this year.
A young Victorian filmmaker, Kristian Lang, took Best Student Film for his 3rd grade class project Photosynthesis: How it works.
Aside from Kristian’s age and aside from the film’s technical assurance, SCINEMA Festival Director Cris Kennedy announced to the party while presenting Kristian with his trophy, “the film got to the essence of successful science communication, which is to condense complex issues into a vehicle that explains science simply, and in a fun way.”
Kristian’s proud parents were on hand to watch the ten-year-old Ascot Vale Primary School student receive his first international film festival prize.
Other Festival winners included Spain’s Pablo Garcia-Lopez take Best Animation or Experimental for his short film Expedition to the Brain, while the US production The Brain Fitness Program took the Award for Technical Merit.
The awards night brought the 2008 SCINEMA Festival of Science Film to a close. In its eighth year, the festival screened in 150 cities across Australia, and a few in India, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
A partnership between CSIRO and Cosmos Magazine, the Festival runs under the support of the Department of Industry, Innovation, Science and Research through its National Science Week program.
Festival winners were:
Best Film – The Colour of Sound
Best Director – Richard Smith
for Crude (Australia) produced for ABC TV
Best Cinematography – Rory
McGuinness for The Big Blue
Best Experimental/Animation –
Expedition to the Brain (Spain)
Best Student Film –
Photosynthesis: How it works (Victoria, Asutralia)Producer and
Director: Kristian Lang for Ascot Vale Primary SchoolA simple look at
how photosynthesis works, made for the filmmaker's 3rd grade class.
Best Science Television –
Award for Scientific Merit –
Brain Fitness Program (USA)
Prix du Jury – Over My
Dead Body (Australia)
Clockwise from top left: Kristian Lang receives his award from Festival Director Cris Kennedy, Jury Chair & Cosmos Magazine Editor-In-Chief with Kristian Lang, some of the crowd at the rooftop party, Jury Member Dr Anna Littleboy talks about the difficulty of selecting winning films from the strong line-up, Queensland filmmaker Vickie Guest receives her trophy, SCINEMA (2005) winning film-maker Jasper Montana with Kristian Lang and his parents Ian and Vickie.
About SCINEMA 2008 - The best and brightest science films can be seen in every corner of Australia this coming National Science Week as SCINEMA, Australia’s premier festival of science film, tours to over 150 towns and cities from August 16 to 24.
SCINEMA, a science film, video and multimedia festival, brings a program of science drama, documentaries, and short subjects, as well as a number of guest speakers, to venues from Cairns to Hobart, and Sydney to Perth.
Since its launch in 2000, SCINEMA has played to tens of thousands of people across Australia, and in 2008, our team has curated a program of amazing films on topics ranging from climate change, human health and natural history, to broader social films. SCINEMA gives many filmmakers an opportunity to have their films, sometimes obscure but always terrific, be seen by an audience. SCINEMA will also play select venues in New Zealand and the United Kingdom, and for the first time, India and the United States.
SCINEMA (pronounced with a long ‘i’ to emphasise the science behind the cinema) is a partnership of the CSIRO, Cosmos Magazine and the National Museum of Australia, with funding from DEST’s National Science Week program, and ACT Department of Health. (Media release issued 10 March 2008).
Promoting and raising the public level of science literacy is the major driver behind the team who run SCINEMA. We have, for eight years, provided a vehicle for new local talent to have their work screened to a national audience and gain experience and recognition, and we continue this year, screening a program of student films at Canberra's Discovery Centre.
In addition to the film screenings, our line-up will include our international guest, Canadian multimedia artist Peter McLeish, who will present his new work ‘Polaris Terrarum’, a collaboration with the crew of the last Space Shuttle.
A jury (chaired by Wilson da Silva, science journalist and editor of Cosmos science magazine) will preside over the screenings and select winning entries in the competition categories:
Winners will be announced on August 24, the closing night of National Science Week. Winners will be announced on the SCINEMA website, and in The Australian newspaper on Saturday 30 August.
This page last updated on 9 February 2009