Yael Assaf

Yael Assaf

Master of Film

Yael Assaf (Isreal, 1978) is an Amsterdam based filmmaker and multidisciplinary artist. She completed her bachelor studies at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy with winning the first prize at the Tent Academy awards 2008, for her film 'Everyone has to get over his Biography'. For her master’s studies at the Film Academy, she was awarded an Excellency scholarship from the Ministry of Culture and Education.
Her films and installations have been exhibited at the IFFR, TENT (Rotterdam), EYE (Amsterdam), NFF, HAFF, Impakt Festival (Utrecht), De Nederlandsche Bank (Amsterdam). Alongside her personal creations, Yael continues her freelance work in the fields of film, media and communication.

Previous education
VAV, Gerrit Rietveld Academy (Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
School of Visual Theatre (Jerusalem, Israel)

Read more
- Group exhibition 'The unexamined experience is not worth having' with works by Yael Assaf, Asli Çavuşoğlu and Lukas Hoffmann at PLAYSTATION @ Galerie Fons Weltersread more
- Students make book

InWords / The word inside Shani - director, animation
Percolate Feelings
- director, editor, writer, animator

Artist's statement
What happens when my world meets yours? How do we translate our personal language to the other side, to another soul?

Don't we all co-exist simultaneously in two realms, on two shores? On the one we live our individual thoughts and dreams, we enjoy the freedom to be abstract, shapeless, confused, self aware. On the outer and social realm, we share the space with others and adjust to their expectations. Isn’t our life made up of the constant journeys between those two realms? What happens to the inner realm when we cross over, as we have to do almost every waking moment?

In the film ‘InWords’ I am trying to touch on these questions and offer my own interpretation. The film is based on an imaginative short story called Shani's Word, by Alit Goren, about a boy, Shani, who has a word growing in his stomach and his quest to release the word into the world.

In 'InWords' I explore a dual existence and try to see if it is possible to create a meaningful whole. It called for expanding the tool-kit of the autonomous artist with the skills of a film maker. My signature as a director lays in the ability to sail and cross over between those different worlds - of fine arts, cinema, sculpture and design - as well as ‘interweaving’ the inner and outer worlds.

Shani’s journey is about the struggle to express oneself without losing oneself. There’s a tendency in our contemporary world to define ourselves from the outside and to continuously reinvent ourselves. But can my world really meet yours if I am disconnected from my own inner language? When our inner and outer realms drift apart, our language, our art, becomes hollow, empty, meaningless. Shani’s word wants to be said, but it also wants to stay true to itself. It is this what drives Shani on his journey. And you might say it’s also what drives me on mine.

Other Projects

- 'Percolate Feelings' (2012)
Short Film Competition, HAFF (Holland Animation Film Festival)
European Short Film Festival at MIT
NFF Student Competition, Nederlands Film Festival 2013

- 'Kip in touch' (2009)
- 'Everyone Has To Get Over His Biography' (2008)

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