Academy of Moving People and Images is a platform founded by filmmaker Erol Mintas, in Helsinki for mobile people – those who have arrived in Finland for different reasons; be they displaced people, forced immigrants, students, asylum seekers, or employees.
We aim to design a new learning model and a sustainable pedagogical platform where people who have arrived in Finland from different backgrounds get to co-work/learn together. We dream to contribute and initiate change to re-build a discrimination-free film industry. One of the main goals is to give possibilities, tools, and skills of filmmaking to mobile people. Through the constant exchange of knowledge/experience between Finnish/mobile filmmakers and the new participants, we hope to see a film industry that is more open and diverse.
A diversity of voices, genders, and cultures is integral to any group. Its absence mirrors structures of racism and intolerance, and a lack of representation of different perspectives. The film industry suffers from a lack of diversity in creative areas. The stories that are being told do not reflect our pluralistic societies. Networks of professionals within the film industry often exist only within closed circles. This homogeneous representation within the film industry—as the visual industry with the widest reach—contributes to widening gaps between people of different backgrounds. Therefore, it is important to identify these structures that effectively reproduce the same one-sided narratives and to work towards a representative film industry that truly projects the diversity that is inherent within our societies.
Within this Academy, we explore what it means to decolonize knowledge, education, and institutions to challenge the hegemony of white, European knowledge, without having a top-down approach.