Catching Up is a series of interviews showcasing various filmmakers based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, in Treaty 1 territory.
While working as the Archive Assistant for the Winnipeg Film Group, I have been able to look through the films that have been highlighted in the past. Now I want to make room for new artists, to create different avenues of archiving in order to make these new filmmakers’ practices and stories more accessible to the public. This is especially important during these times of isolation when we are unable to physically attend events. I want to bring attention to local filmmakers – who they are, what their focus is and what they’ve been up to during this last year. – Mahlet Cuff
Bisong Taiwo is a Nigerian Canadian filmmaker based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Bisong’s films merge spirituality with genre. He has been producing for the last three years, directing three short films, a narrative feature, and a documentary short.
Bisong wanted to get into filmmaking for as long as he can remember.
“In high school, I would take my textbooks and, instead of studying its materials, I would draw little stick figures on each page and flip the pages to make little animations. Later on I transitioned to making animation digitally on computers, but I realized after a while that I was not artistically gifted in drawing, so I moved on to live action film making.”
He has been inspired and continues to be inspired by a range of filmmakers and artists such as Andrei Tarkovsky, Terrence Malick, and Mel Gibson. In addition to studying their filmographies he has been watching the Blade Runner movies.
“They all make films that are spiritually inclined, with Andrei and Terrence searching through the poetic lens, while Mel comes at it through very gritty and harsh realism. The spiritual realm is an area I want to explore in my films.”
Through collaboration and working with his peers Bisong hopes and is looking forward to making more connections within the film industry.
You can keep up to date with what Bisong is up to on instagram @bisong_taiwo, and on his YouTube channel where he posts some of his experimental short films.
He’s currently looking for distribution for two of his bigger films, Time Sleeper, and Memoirs of Salone, so stay tuned to find out when they are released!
Mahlet Cuff is the Archive Assistant at the Winnipeg Film Group, a role made possible through our Archive / Counter Archive Case Study, a project of York University.
Catching Up Logo by Shaneela Boodoo
Head shot by Felicheeta Artistry