Wednesday, 26. September 2012 - 5:45 pm
Every January, in the village of San Bartholme De Pinares in Spain, the locals participate in a 500 year old Christo-Pagan ritual of purification by fire and smoke. This involves “cleansing” horses and their riders (of all ages) as they pass through burning pine brush. This has evolved from a purification ceremony around the time of the Great Plague.
Director Tom Haines and cameraman Steve Annis went to chronicle the extraordinary scenes at the fiesta. James Lavelle of UNKLE (for whom Tom Haines directed the Money And Run video last year) provided the music soundtrack for the haunting images, also accompanied by 1930s Spanish poet Rafael Alberti’s poem Galope, which conjures up pertinent echoes of resistance and suffrage of the wounded soul of Spain.
Tom and Steve spent a week filming in and around the cobblestoned village, interviewing residents in the build up to the festivities. “I think they fully believe in the purification element,” Tom told Nowness. “Pregnant women jump with horses through fire, guys clutching six-month-old babies. That aspect of it certainly is fundamental.”
Using grainy 16mm film, Luminarias portrays the drama, confusion and traditions of the event in a painterly, expressive way, while the multi-layered collage of sound design and music and text render the drama of the fiesta.
Director: Tom Haines
Camera: Steve Annis
Original music: UNKLE
Producers: Ilduara Lamas, Tom Haines
Prod co: Colonel Blimp
EPs: Tamsin Glasson, James Studholme
Sound recordist: Andy Paddon
Editor: Julian Eguiguren
Colorist: Ben Rogers
Sound design: Sven Taits