THE BOAT FROM PUTIN’S PLACE

Ro’o Putin Hatin (The Boat from Putin’s Place, in Hresuk language) is a unique documentary about the traditions surrounding the annual fishing festival based on the remote coastal village of Makili. This event takes place every year—on the last Sunday of June—on this village on the eastern coast of Ataúro island, a few miles north of Dili, capital of the young Southeast Asian nation of Timor-Leste.

Directed by award-winning East Timorese filmmaker Victor de Sousa and produced by David Palazón, this short film, partly observational, partly enquiry, makes visible the traditions behind the klorun ro (boat-pulling in Hresuk) or dada ro’o (in Tetun) ceremony, portraying the coexistence of ancient customs and new beliefs, discussing local craftsmen boat-making techniques, and overall capturing the community’s strong relationship with nature and the sea.

The film was edited with footage recorded in several occasions between 2010 and 2015 by Nelson Turquel, David Palazón and Victor de Sousa; and produced thanks to the financial support from the Secretary of State for Tourism, Arts & Culture in Timor-Leste in 2015.

The film was featured as part of the exhibition ‘The Sculptures of Atauro Island’ at Charles Darwin University Art Collection and Art Gallery from March to July 2017.

Below is a short photo essay portraying some of the highlights of this ceremony.

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