Mountain Films Festival kicks off in three cities

Mountain Films Festival kicks off in three cities

ISTANBUL - Anatolia News Agency
Mountain Films Festival kicks off in three cities

The Mountains Film Festival will screen adventure and nature movies and documentaries in Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir. Hürriyet photos

The seventh edition of the Mountain Films Festival will soon be held in three Turkish provinces and is expected to reach around 10,000 people.

In Istanbul it will be held at the Institute Français in Taksim, Aynalıgeçit in Galatasaray, and the Pusula Art Gallery in Harbiye.

Speaking to the Anatolia news agency, Mountains Culture Association and Festival President Murat Yılmaz said the aim of the festival was to host all kinds of adventure and nature movies and documentaries and to make people more familiar with nature and support nature sports.

Yılmaz said that although the festival was funded through volunteer support, “even with small budgets, we have the opportunity to make big things and raise awareness.” Volunteers are the reason why the festival has been able to continue for seven years, he said.

Noting that their main aim was to bring people who are living in urban areas to the mountains and the middle of nature, Yılmaz said everyone could do nature sports and added that the most important thing was to want to.

Largest nature event in Turkey

“We are running the largest nature event in the country,” he said, adding that the festival this year would have lots of exclusive events, exhibitions, panels, discussions and competitions. There will be also cultural activities during the festival, he added.

People are not in touch with nature when they live in urban environments, according to Yılmaz. “Because society loses its values in urban environments, people also lose their own personality,” he said, adding that this also resulted in illness, stress and fatigue. “People stop thinking about life, stop questioning, and also lose their awareness of life.”

This is a problem that everyone experiences in daily lives, according to Yılmaz. In nature, however, people can understand how to solve every kind of problem that we face in daily life, he said. After facing hardship in nature, people understand that the problems they face in urban life are easy to handle.

Discussing the general audience profile of the festival, Yılmaz said this year the festival aimed to attract a total of 10,000 people in

three different cities. “This is a good figure for us. Our audience isn’t necessarily made up of people who do nature sports. This is a good thing for us because we can see diversity.”

Noting that organizing events in universities attracts young people to sport, Yılmaz said young people should see examples of new nature movies and that mountain films were very popular across the world.

“There are total of 28 mountain film festivals in 17 countries. There is an association called the ‘Mountain Films Association.’ The first mountain films festival started in the Italian city of Trento in 1952,” he said.

Other nature film festivals of the world

Today a total of 45,000 people follow this festival, he said. “This means that Trento has become the festival city.”

Suggesting that everything continues with awareness and curiosity, Yılmaz said that if there were more awareness of nature, more people would watch the movies of the mountain films festival.

“Western societies started to discover the world 500 to 600 years ago. We are not trying hard enough to present and know our own country,” said Yılmaz.

As a result Turkish society stays very close to other societies and cultures, and “that’s why urban living is increasing and we are living less with nature,” he said.

“We are very much behind the rest of the world in terms of our discovery and adventure culture. New nature sports are being discovered everywhere in the world,” he said, noting that people were combining surfing and skiing to create new things. “We need more time for Turkey and I believe we will do it very easily.”

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