December 19, 2012—December 21, 2012

Visible Evidence XIX

Canberra, Australia

Visible Evidence, the international conference on documentary studies, is visiting Canberra, Australia in December 2012, co-hosted by The Australian National University and the National Film and Sound Archive. The Conference welcomes participation from all those interested in contemporary documentary and related topics, from within the academy and documentary making communities.

Individual Paper Deadline: 2 April 2012.
Paper Submissions: and

Call for Papers

Visible Evidence, the international conference on documentary studies, is visiting Canberra, Australia in December 2012, co-hosted by The Australian National University and the National Film and Sound Archive. The Conference welcomes participation from all those interested in contemporary documentary and related topics, from within the academy and documentary making communities.




  • Politics, Documentary, Creativity in Asia and the Pacific
  • New Fusions: documentary art; photography and film; archives and contexts; new platforms and interactivity
  • New Questions, Old Problems: the ethics of ethnography, watching as witnessing versus surveillance versus journalism; documentary cinema/television journalism?

Proposed panels and presentations, however, may address any aspect of documentary and non-fiction film, media, and performance as well as the suggested special threads.


  • Panels will consist of three papers of no more than 20 minutes each. Panels may be pre-constituted, either through individual solicitation or public calls. Submission of paper proposals for panels should go initially to the Chairs of panels. Those papers included in approved panels in turn should be submitted by 20 March 2012.
  • Workshops will consist of between four and six opening statements, in which workshop leaders can present up to thirty minutes collectively of prepared or informal material. Workshops must be pre-constituted i.e. the membership established before the proposal is submitted. Panel and workshop proposals should include a descriptive title, panel/workshop rationale (250-300 words), abstracts by each panelist or workshop leader (250-300 words each), and brief biographies including history of VE participation for the workshop chair and workshop leaders.
  • The open call for paper proposals closes on 2 April 2012, to be submitted via the conference website. Those paper proposals that have not been accepted for approved panels, can be included, submitted again as a part of this open call.
  • Individual paper proposals should include a descriptive title, abstract (250-300 words), and a brief biography including research interests. Only one proposal will be accepted from each participant.


  • Proposals for Panels and Workshops: 1 February 2012. To be submitted to
  • Proposals for Panel Papers: 20 March 2012. To be submitted to
  • Open Call Papers: 2 April 2012. To be submitterd to


Plenary Speakers

Professor David MacDougall, Australian National University

David MacDougall is an ethnographic filmmaker and writer on visual anthropology and documentary cinema. Born in the USA of American and Canadian parents, he has lived in Australia since 1975. He was educated at Harvard University and the University of California at Los Angeles. His first film To Live with Herds won the Grand Prix “Venezia Genti” at the Venice Film Festival in 1972. Soon after this, he and his wife Judith MacDougall produced the Turkana Conversations trilogy of films on semi-nomadic camel herders of northwestern Kenya. Of these, Lorang’s Way won the first prize at Cinéma du Réel in Paris in 1979, and The Wedding Camels the Film Prize of the Royal Anthropological Institute in 1980. With Judith MacDougall, he then directed or co-directed a number of films on indigenous communities in Australia, including Goodbye Old Man (1977), Takeover (1980), Stockman’s Strategy(1984) and Link-Up Diary (1987). In 1991 he and Judith MacDougall completed Photo Wallahs, a film on photographic practices in an Indian hill town. In 1993 he made Tempus de Baristas, about three generations of goat herders in the mountains of Sardinia, winner of the 1995 Earthwatch Film Award. In 1997 he began conducting a study of the Doon School in northern India. This resulted in five films: Doon School Chronicles (2000), With Morning Hearts (2001), Karam in Jaipur (2001), The New Boys (2003), and The Age of Reason (2004). Recent projects include filming at the Rishi Valley School, a progressive co-educational boarding school in South India based on the educational philosophy of Krishnamurti. His experimental film SchoolScapes (2007), made at Rishi Valley, won the Basil Wright Film Prize at the 2007 RAI International Festival of Ethnographic Film. His latest film, Gandhi’s Children(2008), concerns a shelter for homeless children in New Delhi. MacDougall writes regularly on documentary and ethnographic cinema and is the author of Transcultural Cinema (Princeton University Press, 1998) and The Corporeal Image: Film, Ethnography, and the Senses (Princeton, 2006).

Professor Annie Goldson, The University of Auckland

Annie Goldson has been producing and directing award-winning documentaries, docudramas and experimental film/video for 20 years in the United States and New Zealand. Her best-known titles include Punitive DamageGeorgie GirlElgar’s Enigma, and An Island Calling. All titles have also garnered major awards at international film festivals and have screened widely throughout broadcast outlets, including PBS, HBO, Channel 4 and Canalplus and through educational institutions. Her most recent film Brother Number One premiered in the New Zealand International Film Festivals in 2011, screened at the Melbourne International Film Festival, and at IDFA in Amsterdam, amongst other festivals. Annie showed the film as an F4 master at AIDC in Adelaide and traveled with it to London and to New York after it was included in Human Rights Watch Film Festivals. The film has had a theatrical release in New Zealand, and one is pending in Canada. Brother Number One is represented by Cargo Releasing, NYC. Annie is also a writer and has published articles in books and journals such as The Listener (NZ), LandfallScreenSemiotext(e), Social Text, and others. Her book Landscape, Memory, Dad and Me published by Victoria University Publications. Annie has also been director of the biennial New Zealand International Documentary Conference that has run since 1996, is a trustee of the New Zealand International Documentary Festival, DOCEdge and was the President of the Screen Directors’ Guild of New Zealand for three years. She received her PhD in Film and Television Studies from The University of Auckland and is currently a Professor at the Department of Film, Television and Media Studies at that institution. In 2006 she received an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM) for services to film. She has also written extensive study guides which are available online. Her current film He Toki Huna (The Hidden Adze), that was commissioned by Maori Television, is exploring New Zealand’s involvement in Afghanistan.

Professor Michael Renov, USC School of Cinematic Arts

Michael Renov, professor of Critical Studies and vice dean of the USC School of Cinematic Arts, is the author of Hollywood’s Wartime Woman: Representation and Ideology and The Subject of Documentary, editor of Theorizing Documentary, and co-editor of Resolutions: Contemporary Video PracticesCollecting Visible EvidenceThe SAGE Handbook of Film Studies and The Cinema’s Alchemist: The Films of Peter Forgacs. In 1993, Renov co-founded Visible Evidence and is one of three general editors for the Visible Evidence book series at the University of Minnesota Press. In 2005, he co-programmed the 51st annual Robert Flaherty Seminar, a week-long gathering of documentary filmmakers, curators, and educators, creating 20 screening programs and filmmaker dialogues on the theme “Cinema and History.” In addition to curating documentary programs around the world, he has served as a jury member at documentary festivals including Sundance, Silverdocs, the Buenos Aires International Independent Film Festival and Brazil’s It’s All True. He has taught seminars on documentary film at the University of Stockholm, the Royal Film Commission and the Red Sea Institute of Cinematic Arts in Jordan, Hanoi National University and Tel Aviv University.  He is one of three principal investigators on a U.S. Department of State grant, American Film Showcase, that will bring a selection of American documentary films and filmmakers to audiences in developing countries around the world.

Dennis Tupicoff, Writer / Director / Producer

After graduating from Queensland University in 1970, Dennis Tupicoff worked as an archivist and teacher before making his first animated film in Toowoomba. He moved to Melbourne and the Swinburne Film and TV School animation course in 1977. While sometimes making a living with TV ads and other commercial and sponsored work, and later teaching at the VCA School of Television (1992-4), he has made both animated and live-action independent films as writer, director, producer, and animator. Animation has often been called “the illusion of life”. And in live-action cinema there has always been a tension between “the reality of death” and “screen immortality”. These ideas, played out in the world of human experience and emotion, continue to exert a strong influence on the work of Dennis Tupicoff. Whether in his autobiographical The Darra Dogs (1993, 10 mins), the binocular “animated documentary” His Mother’s Voice (1997, 14 mins 30 secs), the cartoon violence of Dance of Death (1983, 7 mins), or his more recent television work, death is never far away.

Professor Brian Winston, University of Lincoln

Brian Winston, the Lincoln Chair of Communications, started his career in 1963 on Granada TV¹s long-running news documentary film series World in Action. In 1985, he won a US prime-time Emmy for documentary scriptwriting (for WNET, New York). He wrote the script for the feature documentary, A Boatload of Wild Irishmen (2010) on the life of Robert Flaherty, Winston has taught, among other places, at New York University film school and the UK National Film & Television School. His writing on documentary includes Claiming the Real IIFires were started…Lies, Damn Lies and Documentaries. The BFI Companion to Documentary, which he has edited, in currently in preparation.

Professor Jane Gaines, Columbia University

Jane Gaines, Professor of Film, Columbia University, specializes in documentary, historiography, and critical theory. Earlier she was founder and director of the Program in Film/Video/Digital at Duke University where she was appointed in the English Department and Graduate Program in Literature, 1982 – 2007. Author of two award-winning books, she is completing a third book on women in the silent film era. She has published articles on intellectual property, documentary theory, feminism and film, early cinema, fashion and film, and critical race theory in Cinema JournalScreenCultural StudiesFrameworkCamera ObscuraWomen and Performance, and the Canadian Journal of Film Studies. Most recently, her “Documentary Radicality” appeared in French translation in Nouveaux indices du monte-aspects du documentaire contemporain, edited by Jean-Luc Lioult.

Fujioka Asakon, Director of Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival Tokyo Office

Born in 1966, spent childhood years in New York and Duesseldorf, Germany. Works with YIDFF since 1993, after working in film distribution. Established the New Asian Currents program, a collection of films and videos by emerging documentarists from around Asia during the years 1995 – 2003. Organized three documentary film workshops with young Thai, Japanese, and Chinese filmmakers in each country 2009 – 2011. Selection committee and advisor for Pusan International Film Festival’s Asian Network of Documentary (AND) Fund since 2006. Active in supporting Japanese films overseas. Freelances as interpreter and translator for international film affairs, bridging film cultures and audiences. Distributor of documentaries Bingai (2008 / China, directed by Feng Yan) and Bilal (2008 / India, directed by Sourav Sarangi) in Japanese cinemas.


The Conference Dinner is at Vivaldi’s Restaurant (a 10 minute walk across campus).

Cost: $65 and $55 for students

Please let us know if you want to sponsor a student to attend the dinner!

Payment is through the Conference Registration site.

About Canberra

Canberra is the national centre of government and was founded in 1913. The name comes, appropriately, from a local Aboriginal word for ‘meeting place’. Surrounded on all sides by a wide expanse of beautiful bushland, the city’s design features sweeping vistas and wide boulevards.

The Australian National University campus is set in extensive parkland (Parks and Wildlife) and hosts a number of Australian and exotic trees, attractive gardens, open space and soft green lawns. Visitors and Students alike can enjoy all the conveniences that come from being within close proximity to the city centre – just a few minutes’ walk away.

Canberra is a safe, clean city with friendly people. The stunning south coast beaches and the Snowy Mountain ski slopes are only a two hour drive away and if the big city lights are an attraction, then flights to Sydney take about 30 minutes. Visitors also have great access to public institutions such as the National Library, National Museum of Australia, the National Gallery of Australia and the National Parliament. Accommodation is available on, or close to, the campus and within walking distance to public transport and city centre.

For more information please check these sites:
Canberra Tourism or Canberra Attractions


The Yellow Pages have maps of the city of Canberra in the front, in the blue section. In addition, can help you locate a street or suburb online, and the Australian Yellow Pages and White Pages both link to this service if you want to locate a person or business.

Canberra Cycling information go here

Canberra has an excellent network of shared paths, footpaths and on-road cycling lanes; offering cyclists and pedestrians enjoyable, safe and efficient routes for travelling in and between suburbs and around our parks and lakes.

Restaurants On campus

Restaurants in and around CBD

There are many cafés and restaurants in Civic, especially along City Walk and in Garema Place.

Where to find kangaroos

The bush around Canberra has many wild kangaroos. There are two species. The grey kangaroo is bigger, lighter-coloured and very common. The Swamp Wallaby is smaller, darker and much less common. Kangaroos are most active early in the morning or late in the evening. You are most likely to see one around sunrise or sunset.

The nearest places with large kangaroo populations are Black Mountain (the mountain just to the west of campus, with the spire on top) and Mount Ainslie. Maps 48 and 58 in the Yellow Pages show the trails on Black Mountain. For Mount Ainslie, go to the War Memorial (P2 on Map 59), and then just start climbing up the mountain behind the memorial. There is a paved trail to the top, with many people and not many kangaroos. If you veer off the main trail you are quite likely to see kangaroos. On cold winter’s nights they tend to come down the mountain and roam the nearby streets – they particularly like to chew up our webmaster’s lawns.

Tourist Sites

The following are a few of the more popular attractions in Canberra:

  • Parliament House: Impressive building, built into a hill. Worth seeing.
  • Australian War Memorial: Focuses mostly on the two world wars. The WWI exhibit prominently features Gallipoli, the WWII exhibit is especially about the war with Japan, in southeast Asia.
  • National Gallery of Australia: Small by international standards. Has interesting exhibits of aboriginal art and of Australian paintings.
  • National Museum of Australia: About the history of Australia.
  • National Library of Australia: Australia’s largest reference library
  • The Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House: This much-loved heritage building offers the visitor a unique glimpse into Australia’s fascinating past.
  • Questacon: Questacon is Australia’s leading interactive science and technology Centre.
  • National Portrait Gallery: Houses a permanent display of Australian portraits in all media, ranging from paintings and formal busts, to photographs
    and sketches.
  • National Film and Sound Archive: The images and sounds of film, television, radio and recording are a reflection of our creativity – a window onto our life and times, our dreams and stories, our place in the world.
  • National Archives of Australia: At the National Archives, we have a dual role, to: 1. promote good records management in Australian Government agencies and 2. manage the valuable records of our nation, and make them accessible now and for future generations.

To find out more about these attractions and more, visit the Canberra Tourism website.


  • Acton Supermarket, ANU Union Building (groceries)
    Mon – Thu: 8:30am – 6pm, Fri: 8:30am – 5pm, Sat: 10am – 3pm
  • Union Shop, ANU Union Building (newsagent and post office)
    Mon – Fri: 8:30am – 6pm
  • Supermarket, University House (groceries)
    Mon – Fri: 8:30am – 7:30pm, Sat – Sun: 8:30am – 12:30pm
  • Canberra Centre, Bunda St, City (variety and specialty stores)
    Mon – Thu: 9am – 5pm, Fri: 9am – 9pm, Sat: 9am – 5pm, Sun: 10am – 4pm
  • Supabarn, Bunda St, City (groceries)
    Mon – Fri: 7am – 10pm, Sat – Sun: 8am – 9pm

Directions for Visitors

The ANU is located in Acton on the north side of Lake Burley Griffin, just west of the Civic Centre.

Arriving by plane

There is an Airliner shuttle buses from the airport, for your convenience. Or else you can catch a taxi to your accommodation. The Canberra Airport is only about 15 minutes from the ANU.

Arriving by train or bus

If you do not wish to catch a taxi from the train station to the ANU (about a twenty minute trip), you can catch bus Route 39 or bus Route 80 (they run at least every half hour between 7.30 am and 10.30 pm) to the city centre. Bus fares within Canberra are all $3.00 regardless of destination. Ask the driver for a transfer ticket – this will allow you to transfer at the City Interchange (Bay 5) to a Route 34 bus (running every half-hour) which will take you along Liversidge Street to Liversidge Apartments. The HRC is located very near by on McCoy Circuit.

For Canberra Taxi companies go here

Transport information at the ANU.

Conference Program

Download the conference program for Visible Evidence XIX here .