Since establishing the One World Human Rights Film Festival in Prague in 1999, Igor Blaževič has encouraged and advised colleagues in more than fifteen countries in kicking off their own human rights film festivals. His last experience is from Burma / Myanmar, where he helped launch and develop the Human Rights Human Dignity Film Festival in a country which is slowly and painfully arising from six decades of harsh military dictatorship and from a civil war which still has not ended. In his lecture Igor will discuss organising festivals with a mission for participating in the transformation of post-dictatorial and post-conflict societies. He will talk about how films and film screening can help heal deep societal wounds. In certain situations, in certain contexts, in the midst of certain audiences, the screening of films and organising a film festival stops being just the screening of films, and becomes something much more profound, which brings us back to the cathartic role of ancient Greek tragedy, the role of purifying, healing and calming down human souls haunted by collective traumas of war, mass scale crimes, repression, torture and imprisonment.
Born in Bosnia/Herzegovina, Igor Blaževič graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy in Zagreb, Croatia, with a degree in philosophy and comparative literature. Since 1991 he has lived and worked in Prague, Czech Republic. Igor Blaževic is a founder and long-time director of the One World festival in Prague. Since 2016 he has been with the Prague Civil Society Centre as head of the Transitions Program. Since 1992, Igor has been engaged with People in Need (PIN), initially as the head of its Communications Department, and later as the director of all of PIN’s democracy assistance and human rights programmes. In 1997 Igor reported from Hong Kong and South East Asia for several media in the Czech Republic with the Epicentrum Agency. Together with his wife Jasmina he has co-authored 10 TV documentary films for Czech television. Board member, and later Board Chair, of the Open Society Fund Prague (2005-2010). Recipient of the Alice Garrigue Masaryk Award, the František Kriegel Prize and the Prix Irene.