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  • Nov 3-5

<span class="caps">AWIM</span> and the Hands of Time

AWIM The People of Papaua New Guinea

AWIM and the Hands of Time is short film about the life and cul­ture of the Awim peo­ple, who inhab­it a remote area of Papua New Guinea in the south­west­ern Pacif­ic Ocean. In 2008, there was a sci­en­tif­ic expe­di­tion (the Cruz May­or Expe­di­tion) that trav­eled through Papua New Guinea, dis­cov­er­ing and inves­ti­gat­ing the great archae­o­log­i­cal and anthro­po­log­i­cal rich­ness of the area.  One of the sci­en­tists’ goals was to explore the pos­si­ble mean­ing of the “hand­print art” that can be found in the caves of this area of the world; using non-aggres­sive meth­ods, they were able to bring back sam­ples from 15 caves for analy­sis in Cana­di­an lab­o­ra­to­ries. AWIM presents an intrigu­ing view of this aspect of the expe­di­tion, which locat­ed more than 200 grot­tos with cave paint­ings of a vari­ety of motifs and fig­ures – includ­ing ani­mals that have been extinct for thou­sands of years. This film is the account of their expe­di­tion.

It has been spec­u­lat­ed that the remote native tribes found in Papua New Guinea may be descend­ed from the very first groups of humans.  They, and their sites, are there­fore of incal­cu­la­ble val­ue to the archae­ol­o­gists and anthro­pol­o­gists who are inter­est­ed in con­serv­ing the rich­ness of the area, which is rid­dled with the tracks of human his­to­ry.  From the very dawn of humankind, as clus­ters of peo­ple spread across the con­ti­nent, they left spe­cif­ic mark­ings in their wake.  Hand­prints found in caves are a stan­dard of world rock art; how­ev­er, sci­en­tists have yet to fig­ure out their true mean­ing.  The Cruz May­or Expe­di­tion team went look­ing for an answer.  What they found was so much more.

Run­ning time: 45 min­utes