Her Name Was Europa

Anja Dornieden, Juan David Gonzalez Monroy

IndieLisboa 2020 •

Documentary, Experimental, 2020, 76′

The duo Dornieden and Monroy, also known as OJOBOCA, works fiction and fable from the use of scientific arguments. Here we have the investigation about the Auroch, a species of wild bovine, first documented case of extinction in the seventeen century. With 16 mm film and an inventive use of sound, the disappearance and efforts to recuperate this mythical animal are the starting points for a relationship with an also mythical idea of Europe.

The Auroch or Uruz is a species of wild cattle that inhabited regions of Europe, Asia and North Africa.

It is considered the ancestor of current domestic cattle and is the first case of extinction to be documented, as a consequence of the high hunting as well as the introduction of modern cattle. The decline and extinction of the last wild aurochs is believed to have occurred in 1627 in the Jaktorów forest, Poland. Although the Auroch is considered a food source, it is distinguished by its physical traits such as strength, speed, endurance and courage. However, these physical traits are inter­twined with symbolic powers, derived from a superstition associated with certain mem­bers of the animal elements such as the skin of the skull and a cross-shaped bone near the heart being coveted for their magical and supernatural properties.

Her Name Was Europa is Juan David González Monroy and Anja Dorniden’s first feature film and explores, with a clinical eye, the modern attempt to resurrect the aurochs from eternal extinction. (Inês Lima Torres)

This film is not in English and does not have subtitles in English.