In a few villages in the Western Carpathians the turn of the year is celebrated with a picturesque ritual:
between Christmas and new years eve the men and young boys in this region in Rumanian Moldavia practice turnarounds, dressed in bear furs, accompanied by drums and flutes. They are guided by "bear guides". The whole ritual refers to the huge population of bears in that region.

Aurelia Mihai not just documents this ritual, but rather stages it as arrival, performance and leaving of the "actors". As she exclusively concentrates on the "bears" while neglecting the human resources like musicians and tamers, she dissolves all references to reality. The action slips into some intermediary space, a world between dream and reality. On the temporal level the cyclical (instead of the linear) time corresponds to this distance, to the ritual reiteration is correlated the loop - from time to time.

From time to time

Artist: Aurelia Mihai
Production year: 2003
Duration: 00:09:50

Anita Beckers

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