Lanesboro Arts presents Ways of Being Home, a documentary film by Cecilia Cornejo. The film will be screened on Friday, January 28th at 7:30 p.m. at the St. Mane Theatre in downtown Lanesboro. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the artist, Cecilia Cornejo. Masks and socially distanced seating required. This event is free, but there will be a free-will donation at the door to support the production of this event.
This intimate cinematic portrait of two small towns – one in Mexico and one in Minnesota – is an evocative audiovisual meditation on the experience of Mexican immigrants living and working in rural America. Vivid cinematography, richly layered soundscapes, short animated sequences, and a constellation of testimonies introduce audiences to Maltrata, an agricultural town nestled in the mountains of Veracruz, Mexico, and to Northfield, a college town in southern Minnesota where many Maltratans have immigrated and settled. By means of a nonlinear narrative and a camera that thoughtfully yet viscerally meanders between everyday scenes in both towns, Chilean-American director Cecilia Cornejo Sotelo shows the complexities of, and contrasts between, these places.
Filmed amidst increasing violence and political unrest in Mexico and the rising anti-immigrant sentiment that took hold during and after the 2016 U.S. presidential election, the voices of fiercely determined and hard-working women coalesce to offer a nuanced portrait of a transnational community. Ultimately, the film is a testament to the resiliency and ingenuity of uprooted people as they craft a life and a home fostered by ritual, relationship, and community rather than solely by geography.
Ways of Being Home has received support from the Minnesota State Arts Board (Artist Initiative Grant 2016, 2018) and a Jerome Foundation Film, Video, and Digital Media Grant (2016).