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The Invisibles: The Work of Eugenio Polgovsky
Institute of Contemporary Arts
25 August – 1 September 2019

Portrait of Eugenio Polgovsky by Henri-François Imbert

The Institute of Contemporary Arts proudly presents the first full UK retrospective dedicated to the work of award-winning Mexican documentary filmmaker Eugenio Polgovsky.

Eugenio Polgovsky (1977 – 2017) is best known for his innovative documentaries which chronicle the struggles of Mexico’s indigenous population against environmental threats and societal indifference. Often self-produced and self-shot, Polgovsky’s films offer immersive portrayals of marginalised characters and communities, depicting the vulnerability of human beings and the natural environment. The Invisibles pays tribute to the work of this singular filmmaker, visual poet and artist whose work has considerably impacted the Mexican documentary landscape.

From 25 August – 1 September 2019, the ICA screens Polgovsky’s six best-known films, each of which demonstrates the emotional power of the director’s highly personal visual language.
A graduate of the Centro de Capacitación Cinematográfica in Mexico City, Eugenio Polgovsky launched the independent production company Tecolote Films in 2007. From 2015 – 17, Polgovsky was a Fellow Commoner in Creative Arts at Trinity College, University of Cambridge. Awarded four Ariels for excellence in filmmaking by the Mexican Academy of Film, Polgovsky’s work has achieved international recognition and has been screened at the Cannes Film Festival, the Venice Biennale, and the Berlin International Film Festival.

Sunday 25 August, 6:30pm
Success + Tropic of Cancer + discussion
The late director’s debut film, Tropic of Cancer, depicts the lives of impoverished families in the arid central Mexican state of San Luis Potosí.

Thursday 29 August, 6:30pm
The Inheritors
Eugenio Polgovsky’s acclaimed 2008 documentary depicts the daily lives of children living in rural Mexico who, with their families, survive only by virtue of their unrelenting labour.

Saturday 31 August, 6:00pm
Lightbyrinth + Mexican Ritual
Past and future collide in Mexico City’s central square in Eugenio Polgovsky’s ‘Mexican Ritual’.

Sunday 1 September, 6:00pm
A family battle the devastating effects of industrial pollution on their local river in this documentary essay about Mexico’s once-paradisiacal Juanacatlán Falls.