About festival

Stories are everywhere

We live in the age of information overload. This means that on each and every corner we are being bombarded with documentary and reportage type stories. In the reality flooded with content, only stories with a great narrative capture our attention. A festival’s main premise is to present interesting phenomenons but also to separate wheat from the chaff and „Okiem Młodych” does exactly that. This year, the 10th edition of the festival, will focus on the topic of „documentary storytelling”.

In social media, small forms of reportage are experiencing a renaissance. People publish information about their experiences, anecdotes and real-life stories. They vary in form, from text and photos to moving pictures. This trend resembles the mass mailing of letters to newspapers in the nineteenth century. A very similar observation was made by Jędrzej Morawiecki, a journalist from Wrocław and a friend of the festival. We most certainly agree with that statement. This is why we try to select the most valuable works that embody the idea of documentary storytelling, at the same time noticing the changes that are currently happening in digital culture. Easy access to tools and new types of communication democratised practically every aspect of art. Nowadays not only anyone can be a creator of content but also we notice a mix of forms and media and the decline in the use of the linear form of narration.

Right now two aspects become very clear: the need for journalistic storytelling and the rich variety of documentary storytelling. Okiem Młodych is open to and tries to present a cross section of different dimensions of documentary forms. This is why during the 10th edition of the Festival we will present short documentaries, essential to the spirit of the festival, submitted for the competition from all over the world, but also present an overview of the most important documentary films of the season. This is the second time that the audience in Świdnica will have an opportunity to experience a new form of documentary storytelling – Cinematic VR, a form of spatial storytelling using the technology of virtual reality. We will also take a closer look at the new technologies and their possibilities: web-docs, interactive and non-linear form, which poses many challenges but also provides many surprises for the viewers and the creators themselves. There will be a room for mockumentary works but also more classic forms such as documentary photography and literary reportage.

The new forms of documentary storytelling transform the art of film-making and expand the boundaries of traditional journalism. This is where their power is but also where the challenges come from. We need to learn a new language to operate these new forms and carefully select only the most valuable and inspiring examples of works. For all this and more, we invite you to Świdnica to explore documentary storytelling and experience the world as seen by film-makes, photographers, VR creators, journalists and reporters.