© Antony Gormley's Waste Man commissioned by Artangel for Penny Woolcock's feature film Exodus
Director: Ben Hopkins (UK)
Run time: 85'
Location/Ethnic group: Turkey/ Pamir, Kirghiz
Language: In English, Turkish and Kirghiz with English subtitles
Production/Distribution: Ben Hopkins, Natasha Dack, Nikki Parrott
For the last 27 years, a group of some 2000 Kirghiz from the Pamir region of Central Asia have been living in exile in Eastern Turkey. In 2005, an Anglo-Turkish film crew arrived in their village to work with them to tell the story of their exile. In a series of scenes divided into "chapters", we see interviews with the Kirghiz, exciting and entertaining reconstructions shot on film in a variety of different cinematic styles, and comic scenes of the interaction between the film crew and the community. During this process, we learn how the Pamir Kirghiz' antipathy to Communism drove them from the Soviet Union, then later from Maoist China, and finally from the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan to their current exile. As the past is explored in interview and reconstruction, we see how the Pamir Kirghiz live today in modern Turkey. The film is part historical document, part ethnographical description of a unique people, part portrait of the conflict between individual and globalised culture, and part comedy about the process of film-making.