The Polish Language – Alice Lyons – Orla Mc Hardy – Ireland – USA

The Polish Language is an animated film-poem about the subversive force of art and the renewal of poetry in the whispery language of Polish. Based on the poem of the same title, the film pays homage to the revitalization of poetry in the Polish language in the 20th century. Using hand-drawn, stop-motion and time-lapse animation techniques, the poem unfolds onscreen, with typography as a key visual element. It visual style is loosely based on underground publications in Poland in the 1970s and 1980s, known as Bibula. A chorus of voices sampling poems in Polish, woven together with original music by sound designer Justin Spooner, combine to create a powerful score in a film of ’emotional depth and technical sophistication’ (Jury, Galway Film Fleadh 2009, award for Best Animation).

Alice Lyons is a writer whose work embraces the visual arts. Author of three books of poetry, she is recipient of the Patrick Kavanagh Award for Poetry and the inaugural Ireland Chair of Poetry Bursary awarded by Nuala Ní Dhomhnaill. Her poetry film, The Polish Language, co-directed with Orla Mc Hardy, was nominated for an Irish Film and Television Award (IFTA, 2010). Originally from the USA, where she was Radcliffe Fellow in Poetry and New Media at Harvard University 2015/16, she has lived in the west of Ireland for over twenty years. She lectures in writing and literature at the Yeats Academy of Arts, Design & Architecture, IT Sligo.

Orla Mc Hardy is an artist & educator based between Donegal (IRL) and Richmond, Virginia (USA).

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