The term docufragmentary can be described as a series of short sequences varying in content and time allowing for very fragmentary development. Its format represents the disintegration of outlines and invites an active viewer to reflect and to create their own network of connections. While information is passed in a specific form, the elements received as documentary flashes are automatically reinterpreted by the viewer, creating an inclusive aspect turning her/him into an active participant of the work.
The docufragmentary Rehearsing Reality introduces Forum Theatre created by Augusto Boal at the point of interaction with Brazil’s Landless Movement. Through this drama technique Rehearsing Reality exposes the marginal social conditions under which the Brazilian landless are forced to live and the attempts they are employing to reverse this situation.
Rehearsing Reality is formed of a series of sequences that vary in length and approach including elements of space, time, music, silence, interviews and opposing views. By experiencing a constant process of disruption, the active viewer encounters a series of fragmented sequences interconnected with each other. This fragmented structure provides a multiplicity of meanings for which the audience must hunt and find.
Its aesthetic challenges conventional boundaries of documentary language and reveals the main radical elements of Augusto Boal Forum Theatre: rupture of structure, interaction of spect-actors‚ constant dialogue, interpretation and the making and remaking of scenes.
The docufragmentary Rehearsing Reality is a central part of my PhD at the University of Arts London, in which I decided to explore the use of new media to illustrate particularly the relationship between arts and politics, interruption and narrative, representation and authorship.
Rehearsing Reality was made with Korsakow System – a new software designed to create interactive films on line.
© Nina Simões
Nina Simões’ audiovisual experiment, which she terms docufragmentary,
takes John Grierson’s original definition of the documentary as the ‘creative use of actuality’
and pushes this further to mean not only the creativity involved in producing the film but also in viewing it.
Dr. Udi Butler