Experiencing Interruptions?

Being an Islander

Insularity as social construct and a form of social and cultural identity. What does it mean to live in a touristic ‘paradise’ 365 days a year?
A journey through time, space, and human souls - those of the Islanders. Through the narratives of the residents, a mosaic of different voices breaks through the monothematic images of a nostalgic Mediterranean, inviting us to unfold the coexistence of contrasts and convergences, the symbiosis of differences, reminding us of the value of human ties.

Being an islander
It could be fate, choice
or mere chance.
And it is so romantic when one looks at it from afar.
But what does it really mean?
A piece of land, floating at sea for millions of years .
A heritage so deep and rooted and at the same time so fragile, that needs constant care and protection.
A perseverance that defies circumstances, foul weather, shortage and scarcities.
A discipline that balances off the extreme lightness and bliss of the summer with the darkness and solitude of the winter.
A perspicacity to know what is good development and what is a threat.

Being an islander is being a guard.
Of the past,
of the present,
of the frontiers,
tangible and intangible, alike.

  • Dimitrios Bouras
  • Dimitrios Bouras
  • Dimitrios Bouras
    Executive Producers
  • Anastasia Christophilopoulou
    Executive Producers
  • Orestis Seferoglou
  • Manos Makrigiannakis
  • Kostas Grountas
  • Orestis Seferoglou
    Directors of Photography
  • Dimitrios Bouras
    Directors of Photography
  • Manos Makrigiannakis
  • Valia Tsirigoti
  • Dimitrios Bouras
  • Anastasia Christophilopoulou
  • Kostas Grountas
    Original Music
  • Yiannis Christodoulatos
  • Kostas Pappas
    Art Director
  • Amalia Symeonidou
    Production Design
  • Christina "Crosti" Tsevis
  • Evangelos "Don Forty" Sarantaris
  • Orestis Seferoglou
    Color Correction
  • Andriana Theochari
    Production Assistants
  • Jack Stephenson
    Production Assistants
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    Being an Islander
  • Project Type:
  • Genres:
    Anthropology, Ethnography, History, Social Issues, Human Concerns, Social Impact, Insularity
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 8 minutes 14 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    December 21, 2022
  • Country of Origin:
  • Country of Filming:
  • Language:
    Modern Greek (1453-)
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
    1.78 : 1
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • 25th Thessaloniki International Documentary Festival
    March 2, 2023
    World Premiere
    Fischer Audience Award Platform/From Screen to Screen
  • Indian Independent Film Festival
    Kolkata, West Bengal 700014
    May 29, 2023
    Best Documentary
  • 17th London Greek Film Festival 2023
    United Kingdom
  • Rome Prisma Film Awards
    Best Feature Documentary Nominee
  • Boden International Film Festival
    Boden, Norrbotten 961 45
    Official Selection
  • Stockholm City Film Festival
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Dimitrios Bouras

DIMITIRIOS BOURAS, is an Anthropologist photographer and documentarian working on long term projects which focus on humanitarian issues, conflict and war around the globe. He has chronicled the world’s most troubled territories since 1981. His work has taken him to the Balkans, the greater zone of Caucasus Eurasia (ex-Soviet Union), the Sub-Saharan Africa, and especially the Middle East.

His current research, “Beyond Dichotomies: Reassembling Global Challenges through the Local”, is a comparative study of geopolitical and anthropological interest that investigates the new form of war: hybrid/‛undeclared war’. He follows developments in the Middle East and in the greater zone of Caucasus – Eurasia, to draw conclusions about the changing nature of modern warfare.

Since 2010, started including in his focus Healthcare – researching on epidemics and the epidemic process: His 2010~2013 work includes the results of a research study among homeless IDU population in Athens, titled “Accusing the Victims of Being the Perpetrators” He investigated the TB & MDR-TB Epidemic in Ukraine, the outcome of which, culminated in the creation of a documentary titled “Forgotten Youth, Ukraine” commissioned by ThreeSixZero, Singapore, and screened by NG Asia. (Human Concerns Award at New York TV & Film Festival in 2019). During 2019, he participated on a documentary on assignment for CSIS (Center for Strategic International Studies) “on the Brink of a New HIV/AIDS Epidemic” (filming in USA, S. Africa, and Ukraine).

His latest Anthropological research explores the theme of insularity and what defines island identities in the Eastern Mediterranean, the outcome of which, culminated in the creation of a documentary titled “Being an Islander” (2022) on commission for Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge

Dimitrios is a frequent lecturer and essayist at several academic institutions and international conferences. Resides between Cyprus, University of Cambridge - UK, Duhok - KRG/Iraq and Ukraine

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

Opening the islands, we found the people inside of them. A tight-knit community structure in a constant state of transformation and societal evolution imposes its presence in the space. A public sphere, a subset of the planet with its self-imposed independence, full of convergence and contrast, a palimpsest of intersecting lives that connects in real time, multiple strata of memory and of oblivion, reminding us, through the remains of a different, past era (a prehistoric one), the precious lessons of respecting the space that offers us life.
Interweaved researchers, and a variety of twenty six community members of Sifnos, answering the same set of key questions, e.g.: ‘What does it mean to be an islander?’, ‘What role does the natural environment and the island’s resources play in the shaping of island life and culture?’, ‘How important is immaterial culture, and how is it manifested in the island setting?’