Ultramarine wins a Tiger at the International Film Festival Rotterdam

Vincent Meessen’s Ultramarine wins an Ammodo Tiger Short Award at the International Film Festival Rotterdam 2019!


Blue is the chromatic, historical and discursive filter through which a performance by African-American poet Kain unfolds. The famed precursor of hip-hop in the late 1960s delivers his “spoken word” as the Belgian percussionist Lander Gyselinck improvises to the flow of his utterances. Throughout the performance various museum objects— funeral figurines, automaton, astrolabe, mappa mundi, textiles —are juxtaposed to Kain’s own props. They invoke affective retrospections on exile and belonging, slave routes and colonial trade.

Statement of the jury:

“Rarely has the relevance of film to performance been so clear. The role of cinema here stunningly enforces the rhythm, vision, and urgency of the poet’s delivery. The film is precisely structured in a way that allows us to see the images the poet conjures, to sonorise the beat at which he speaks and to feel what is so radical in his utterance. The jury was utterly convinced.”

Members of the jury: Nguyen Trinh Thi, John Canciani, Lawrence Abu Hamdan

World premiere of Vincent Meessen’s Ultramarine in the Ammodo Tiger Short Competition of the International Film Festival Rotterdam
25, 26, 29/01/2019

Ammodo Tiger Short Competition
25 Jan 2019 17:15 Pathé 2
26 Jan 2019 15:30 Pathé 2
29 Jan 2019 18:00 Pathé 2

Read more about the Vincent Meessen’s research project Ultramarine
Read more about the single screen film Ultramarine
Read a reflection on the relevance of short films at IFFR blog, featuring the winners of the Ammodo Tiger Short Competition 2019
Watch the teaser for Ultramarine