A raw, atmospheric portrait of today’s Ukraine is presented through the lens of the artists who have chosen to stay, navigating the jarring rhythms and surreal juxtapositions of life under the shadow of war. A young couple wakes to air raid sirens and has tea on their balcony. Neighborhoods lie in ruins, and the community comes together to sweep up broken glass. Scenes of devastation provoke insomnia and numbness — yet friends gather to relax in a bar, and an art center pushes ahead with a new exhibition. While their lives are getting irreversibly altered, these subjects see their practice as a survival tool in a conflict aimed at cultural erasure as much as brute domination. The film beautifully documents how their work both processes the moment, and offers hope. Visceral, poetic, and urgent, Rule of Two Walls illuminates the vital role art plays as a resistance tool to preserve culture and spiritual defiance in times of crisis.
Feature Competition section is supported by Macquarie University