A three-year work-in-progress condensed into a seven-minute film, director Emmanuel Adjei and artist Sevdaliza have created a visually cinematic and sonic journey that questions the eternal fascinations and desires of the human mind. Supported by global file-sharing giant, WeTransfer, 'Shahmaran' is a visually cinematic and sonic journey about love, power and the misrepresentation of freedom.
With Sevdaliza’s music and energy in the film, Ghanaian director Emmanuel Adjei tells the story of the black man, who continues life in a cycle of oppression. The modern chains on black men today are the aspirations of decadence, power and success that create a false sense of autonomy and freedom. This leaves them victim of addictions to power and materialism, unable to venture outside what is “expected” of their behaviour. The film serves to show two very different marginalized individuals (Sevdaliza & Adjei) supporting one another, whilst respecting each other’s space and voice. The visual element came to fruition after Adjei and Sevdaliza came to a symbiotic understanding that ‘Shahmaran’ was her music to his story.
Director, Emmanuel Adjei, comments: “Carrying the burden of their ancestors, most black men today are still born into an environment that limits their freedom. Lost in a hazardous place from which they can’t seem to escape, their survival mechanisms have become their guide when making decisions. Whilst growing up, they have learned to fixate on the place where they know they need to be. Drawn to the dream of having power and success, they hold on to a false idea of autonomy. Yet, it is this house of freedom that has enslaved these men again. Chained to a fantasy, often of a materialistic nature, they remain upright throughout survival.”
Film director and visual artist, Emmanuel Adjei, has collaborated with musician, Sevdaliza on several projects. In ‘Shahmaran’ his creative vision challenged them both to deconstruct characters and the very format of their artistic expression.
With 40 million + monthly unique users, WeTransfer takes a commissioning body approach to new content. Supporting the project from the beginning, Adjei’s film will run on WeTransfer, as well as across his and Sevdaliza’s YouTube and Vimeo channels.
Also weighing in on the project, Red Bull screened the film to an exclusive group of European creatives (under the banner Red Bull Frontiers) in Matera, Italy, ahead of the launch.
Outdoor activations will run in exclusive locations in London, New York and Amsterdam.
Special Thanks: WeTransfer, LBBonline, Biz3, Headfirst Music, Kadri Mahmoud, Kiran Mandla, Benjamin Mamou, Ine Kim, Phoebe Siggins, Red Bull Music