Powerful films engaging the great themes of the age

Cape Town-based CineSouth Studios undertakes and delivers feature-length and larger-scale multiyear film projects. 
Director Victor van Aswegen’s films engage the big-picture topics – at a time when these include 
some of the most consequential questions ever to confront humanity.

November 2021

Work continues with land artist Strijdom van der Merwe, to film the making of beautiful ephemeral artworks in strikingly cinematic natural settings
for Sculpting This Earth, to be released early 2022. Honoured that Displaced, released end last year and now on the global
film festival circuit, was chosen as opening-night film for the 2021 Jozi Film Festival in Johannesburg.

Themes

Subject matter that matters

CineSouth pursues large, complex, intractable issues in its films – the subjects that define the era, the challenges that will shape the human future. How, to what extent, indeed whether at all these questions are resolved, will be all-determining. Addressing itself to the items at the very top of the global agenda, the studio’s films, made for a worldwide audience keen to engage with these critical subjects, feed into vital global conversations.

The topics in CineSouth’s slate of projects to date include: the nature of complex systems; the lessons learnt when a modern urban water supply system was plunged into crisis by an unprecedentedly severe drought; the trauma of forced displacement; our relationship to the natural world; artmaking and the construction of meaning. Migration, nature, water, climate, the vulnerabilities of our global civilisation – these are some of the great themes of the age.

Future CineSouth film projects, planned and in development, encompass but also look beyond the many immediate crises of the day, to the long-term future of the human enterprise, the risk of the extinction of the species, and the mitigation of these existential risks. The century is uniquely perilous. The stakes could not be higher. The subject matter is inexhaustible.

Sculpting This Earth

The first documentary feature film about land art from the southern hemisphere. Over four consecutive seasons, artist 
Strijdom van der Merwe makes land art in spectacular settings in the vast open spaces of the southern African interior. Ephemeral artworks in nature. 
A reflection on the human existence on the planet and our relationship to the natural world.

Day Zero

Before Cape Town’s water crisis in 2017-2018 came the crises of São Paulo in 2014, Barcelona in 2008, 
Australia’s large cities in the 2000s. Failure to learn from past mistakes is to self-condemn to repeating those mistakes in future. 
With clarity and dispassion, Day Zero sets out the lessons from Cape Town.

Coast

Childhood to parenthood. Faraway village to sprawling metropolis. 
Seven days from first light to nightfall. Seven spectacularly scenic coastal settings around Cape Town. Ordinary daily 
human life captured with a stationary camera and locked-off shots in the style of the Lumières.

Displaced

A retrospective of the oeuvre of artist Emma Willemse. 
Home. The loss of a home. Displacement. A deeply felt engagement, refracted through art, with the traumatic 
experience of people forcibly displaced by conflict, violence and persecution.

The Cape Town Drought Response Learning Initiative

Key learnings distilled from the 2017-2018 Cape Town water crisis. 
Three series of 56 film-based learning outputs, each with accompanying text. Drawn from the rich resource of 
39 in-depth filmed interviews with senior societal actors and leading experts recorded for this purpose.

Máquina do Mundo

The nature of complex systems. The moment when chaos becomes society. Or vice versa. 
The tension between the finely honed networks and organisations of contemporary society and the ever present, 
pervasive sense of the possibility of catastrophe. In conversation with artist Katja Gentric.

Filmmaker

Victor van Aswegen

CineSouth Studios founder-owner. Works principally as director and producer. Conceptualises, develops and executes all CineSouth 
projects, and does the cinematography and editing on his films himself. Brings to the content of the films and to the task of their funding, production and project management 
the experience of his background in, successively, law, economics, development, finance, private equity, consultancy, and business analytics.