A Girl from Ouessant
France, Belgium | 2018 | 28 min
Language : French
Subtitle : English
At the tip of Brittany, the island of Ouessant—a grassy heathland swept by sea winds—is the last land before America. Given its geographical situation, it is a place that opens wide the doors of imagination. A Girl from Ouessant is an invented and, at the same time very documented, cartography of the island. This methodical statement starts as the diary of Éléonore Saintagnan, the resident artist-filmmaker at the Créac’h semaphore station, an ideal site for observing the surrounding area. Then, the account shifts towards a playful mise en scène, peopled with sailors’ wives, kelp burners, stories of little black sheep or countless shipwrecks… Drawing on the regional archives filmed in black and white dating from a time when the island lived mainly from fishing, the game begins. In a “If I’d lived in these times, I’d have been a sailor’s daughter…” style, the director takes us far away, to a world in which historical reality is nourished by personal mythology, to imagined places, and where, by projecting ourselves, we start to feel the salty sea spray on our face.