Audrius Stonys: Woman and the Glacier

The master of refined style, Audrius Stonys, decided to take us on an unusual pilgrimage to the inaccessible heights of Tian Shan mountain on the border between Kazakhstan and China. In the areas of this Mountain of Heaven, which looks like an unknown and inhospitable planet, he devotes all his attention and creativity to an amazing person who has spent thirty years observing and monitoring the state of the giant glacier, so important for the science, but also for the whole planet. Through an unusual intimate portrait of a mountain captive in constant motion, Audrius Stonys masterfully poetizes relations of the heroine and the environment, nature, sky, beings with whom she shares the loneliness, the rigors of the climate and the beauty that surrounds them.

To his story in present time, meticulously woven without words, Stonys adds another important layer, a layer of long time flows. This film plunges deep into time, and in the compounds of past and present builds a brand new, poetic and timeless relations. Audrius Stonys is one of the most important European authors because of this complex weave of time in his films and amazing ability to capture and express the feeling that through spaces, people, events and phenomena converge and break all previous deep and very distant reflections of time.

The author was drawn to the fact that the woman glaciologist is his compatriot: “It is very unusual for a woman from Lithuania to explore ice on the remote Tian Shan, at the end of the world, without any connection with the rest of the world. Scientist Aushra, living high in the mountains, in a wooden house near the huge glacier, did measurements for many years, every morning and evening, summer and winter, and sent them to the control center in Almaty. She gave her whole life observing glaciers in Kazakhstan.”

Lithuania, Estonia, 2016, 56 mins.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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