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Cecilia Araneda

Cecilia Araneda

area: Film

Key Facts







recommending institution

this human world

time period

November 2019 - December 2019

Chilean-Canadian filmmaker and curator came to Canada as a child as a refugee together with her family, after they escaped Chile’s bloody military dictatorship. She grew up in northern Manitoba, in Leaf Rapids and The Pas, and currently lives in Winnipeg. She holds a BFA (hons) from York University and an MFA from UBC, and is additionally a three-time alumna of the fabled Film Farm.

Araneda has completed 15 short films to-date, which have been presented at film festivals, artist run centres and art museums around the world, and that have been recognized with various awards and distinctions nationally and internationally. Among the festivals that have presented her work include Visions du Reél, Ann Arbor, Jihlava IDFF, Imagesand Festival du Nouveau Cinéma. Solo career surveys of her work have been presented in Ottawa (2010), Toronto (2017),Winnipeg (2018), and Buenos Aires (2018). She has additionally been awarded art residencies by LIFT: The Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto as the inaugural recipient of the Roberto Ariganello Prize (2017) and by Q21 in Vienna’s MuseumsQuartier (2019).

Araneda is also an internationally recognized media art curator. In 2019, she became the first-ever curator from the prairies to be awarded the Joan Lowndes Prize from the Canada Council for the Arts, for independent curatorial practice in visual and media arts. In 2017, Araneda was additionally the recipient of an international curatorial residencyat the FICWALLMAPU International Indigenous Film Festival of the Mapuche Nation, funded in full by the Canada Council. In 2018, she returned to the festival a year later as a curator to present Caroline Monnet’s first artistic career survey, presented in October 2018 at the festival in Temuco and a week later in Santiago (Chile). Araneda has additionally curated multiple programs over nearly a decade for the WNDX Festival of Moving Image (an organization she co-founded with filmmaker Solomon Nagler).

From 2006 to 2017, Araneda served as Executive Director of the Winnipeg Film Group / Winnipeg Cinematheque, a legendary media arts organization that has a budget of $1M and 14 permanent staff. Araneda left permanent, full time employment in 2018 to advance her independent artistic and curatorial practice. Since that time, she has continued to work nationally within the media arts milieu on number of special development project contracts, including for VUCAVU and the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba, among others.

Araneda is currently in production with a short experimental documentary, UNARCHIVE, and is developing two feature-length projects. She is additionally leading the Winnipeg-based Mujer Artista v2 project, connecting Latin women artists from the prairies to work through collective professional development towards a final group show at aceartinc. in January 2020.

Araneda is trilingual in (in order of dominance): English, Spanish and French. She has also more recently begun studying Anishinaabemowin (Southern Manitoba Ojibwe dialect). Similar to most Latin Americans, Araneda is of mixed European and Indigenous (Mapuche) ancestry.

Project info

Though borders have now shifted, my mother lived the first four years of her life in the refugee camps in southern Austria as she commenced a life that would see her live in three continents and become a refugee twice in her life by the time she was 30. This residency will support on-site research and image gathering / making towards developing structure for a new experimental documentary that reflects on this history.

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