Pictures of emotion, courage and diversity at the Benaki

Diversity may be an alternative form of artistic expression. This is the case of the first international festival on documentary and disability: «Emotion Pictures,» set to take place at the Benaki Museum’s Pireos wing (138 Pireos & Andronikou) this Saturday to Monday next week. The festival is part of the 2nd International Conference «People with Disabilities and Mass Media,» organized by the Secretariat General of Communication. Boasting 350 participations from 45 countries, the festival includes 40 screenings – 32 of which are in the competition section. Five awards, each carrying a 20,000-euro cash prize, will be presented by an international committee, while the festival’s artistic director is film director Maria Hadjimichali-Papaliou. Celebrated disabled British artist Alison Lapper will inaugurate the festival’s activities. «Alison Lapper Pregnant,» a sculpture by British artist Marc Quinn, currently stands in London’s Trafalgar Square. In 2003, Lapper was the recipient of the «Woman of the Year» award in Spain, while her works have gone on display in major museums and galleries, such as London’s Photographer’s Gallery and Fabrica. Well-known Paralympic athlete Aimee Mullins is also expected in Athens for the festival. Besides being an accomplished athlete, Mullins is a model, actress and speaker, as well as a role model for disabled people all over the world. In 2001, the American athlete was included in the permanent exhibit of the Women’s Museum in Dallas as one of the «Greatest American Women of the 20th Century.» The competition part of the festival opens with «My Eyes» by Denmark’s Erlend E. Mo. This film, as well the event’s Greek documentaries (except «Chip & Ovi»), will be accompanied by aural description in Greek for those with diminished eyesight or blindness. The festival’s opening ceremony will be presented by Lakis Lazopoulos, while entrance to all screenings will be free of charge. For more information on the festival and screenings, log on to

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