An exhibition of photographs being held at Priya Theatre Complex here chronicling the evolution of the International Film
Festival of Kerala (IFFK) has become a runaway hit with cinema lovers of Palakkad and neighbouring districts.
Actor Sajitha Madathil, who curated the exhibition titled Mela@25 in association with Kerala State Chalachitra Academy vice chairperson Bina Paul, was upbeat to see many students curiously photographing the exhibits for their academic purpose. “It’s definitely going to serve a better purpose for them,” Ms. Sajitha told The Hindu.
The exhibition is a pictorial chronicling of the 25-year-old history of IFFK. “We were particular about telling history through pictures, especially as we see a lot of history being rewritten for vested interests. These pictures can speak loud and bold,” said Ms. Sajitha.
Endorsing the thinking of Ms. Sajitha and Ms. Bina, youngsters have been pouring in to the latest editions of the IFFK. It is not IFFK history in full, but it throws light on the IFFK over the last 25 years.
The photographs of IFFK signages and boards displayed at the entrance give a clear picture of the festival’s evolution from its
old-fashioned style to the modern ambience. “These pictures are testimony to the change the IFFK has undergone over the last 25 years,” said Ms. Sajitha.
The beginning and the landmarks of the IFFK have been documented to evoke curiosity especially in the young generation. Begun in 1994 in Kozhikode under the banner of the Kerala State Film Development Corporation (KSFDC), the IFFK became an annual pride of the Kerala State Chalachitra Academy from 1999. Since 2001, Thiruvananthapuram has been the permanent venue of the IFFK.
Another section gives a pictorial essay about the evolution of delegate passes from handwritten ID cards to modern-day moulded
plastic cards. Photos of films reels used in the early years of the IFFK have been reminiscent of the cumbersomeness and delays caused by the reels. “It talks a lot about the transition to digital era,” said Madhu Janardhan, one of the festival conveners.
The photos of dignitaries who attended the festival over the years, the festival books, covers and daily bulletins, open forums and awards can all take back the visitors to previous editions of the IFFK. One section speaks in detail about the IFFK awards, including the lifetime achievement award instituted in 2009.
Another section of photos has been kept aside for delegates. “It is good enough to boast that our fest is one of the largest film melas in the world,” said Mr. Madhu.