While I have created some film projections for live performances, this is the first short film that I have created. It all started while researching the Romanian Legend of the Argeș Monastery for a full evening length show I created in 2018. In this legend, a pregnant woman is immured to make the walls of the monastery stand. After further research, I came across the belief of the “stahie,” or shadow, an ancient Eastern European belief and practice that in order for the walls of a building to stand, someone has to be built into the walls either physically (i.e their body), or metaphysically (i.e their shadow).
As I delved into the legend and this belief, I found myself questioning Who is the shadow? Is the shadow real? What if shadows were real? What is reality? Does it even matter, if we all fade away from memory and existence, leaving nothing behind?
Ultimately, I was questioning whether, as a woman, it was more important for me to create, or to reproduce. And, why do I have this need? Is it to achieve a sort of immortality, a way to exist beyond my existence, whether through the creation of offspring, or art creation? The shadows represent the struggle of a woman artist – art creation vs. procreation. It is a question with no satisfactory answer.
Besides the central theme being a female dilemma, this film is female created (directed, composed, performed, and edited by women).