May 2, 2024

SCREEN | On Tamio Wakayama's Life 'Between Pictures' x DOXA 2024

"My boyhood years were a kaleidoscope of joy and pain."
Between Pictures: The Lens of Tamio Wakayama | DOXA 2024
DOXA Documentary Film Festival
Multimedia artist Cindy Mochizuki chronicles the remarkable life and career of the Japanese-Canadian photographer in Between Pictures: The Lens of Tamio Wakayama. Told through the framework of Wakayam's own family history of being imprisoned in internment camps, the Telus documentary follows his tireless efforts to capture the 1960s civil rights movement in the American South.

It's an inviting portrait of an activist photographer documenting the non-violent movement for equal rights among African-Americans while far from Wakayama's home growing up in British Columbia. His work documenting segregation in the notable efforts to create change through the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) rings more true than ever all these years later. How Between Pictures compares Asian racism in Canada with Black oppression in the U.S. provides an enlightening historical contrast.

Told simply yet intimately and effectively using archival imagery, personal interviews, narration utilizing Wakayama's own words, and playful animation, the documentary artistically recounts his consequential work told in the context of his family's ethnic background and historical racial injustice. Mochizuki brings a warm view to Between Pictures' more biographical elements without just giving us a history lesson.

Between Pictures: The Lens of Tamio Wakayama screens at the 2024 DOXA Documentary Film Festival as part of the Paint Me A Film spotlight at The Cinematheque on May 5th and SFU Djavad Mowafaghian Cinema on May 9th.

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