Syndromes of mimicry
What can we call specific, authentic, or, our own?
In my research, I work with the concept of mimicry in the post-Soviet condition in Eastern Europe. In this region the Westernization process took a rather peculiar route, and seemingly adopted the form of a copy or imitation of Western norms. Although mimicry can be viewed as a negative aspect of development, which does not introduce anything novel into society; in my research I evaluate it as a coping mechanism for Baltic colonialism and tool for post-Soviet identity building.
The film Syndromes of Mimicry is a case study, with a satirical approach on a manifestation of mimicry in day-to-day life in Lithuania. With this film I attempt to illustrate a dissonance between the state’s politics and its citizens, and I invite the viewer to consider the hollowness of Lithuanian Eurocentrism.
Syndromes of Mimicry
I developed a script for a short film as a way to visually study the aesthetics of mimicry. It is a collection of short stories, which represent existing mimicry in the media and the cultural, social and political practices in Lithuania:
While the state is busy preparing to celebrate a new historical event, the working class is drowned in their routine and mundane boredom. Enthusiasm has vanished a long time ago, now only a feeling of apathy remains.
Syndromes of Mimicry examines the concept of imitative behavior in a post-Soviet nation’s day-to-day life. What is needed to gain the recognition and appreciation of the West? Will a pompous light show bring happiness and prosperity to the people’s lives?
Sharing satirical qualities, Syndromes of Mimicry puts forward a criticism of the blind Westernization processes and the lack of authenticity in post-Soviet Lithuania. It invites the viewer to rethink the present state of the nation’s tedious life.
- Length (min.)
director, screenwriter Anastasija Piroženko
cinematography Edgaras Kordiukovas
editor Anastasija Piroženko, Stella van Voorst van Beest
sound design, foley Ronnie van der Veer
composer Matteo Canetta
script advisor Aliona van der Horst
starring Aleksandras Aniukštis, Dainius Juzva, Toye Samson Abiodun, Rimas Morkūnas, Darius Saženis, Denis Senin, Eugenija Stakėnienė, Laima Užurkaitė
Country of production Lithuania