The Orchard keepers takes us on a journey into the rugged the Sinai desert. Behind intricate stonewalls we meet Dr. Ahmad, the last surviving herbalist trained in the ancient ways of desert healing. But it is Amariya – the resilient and exuberant naturalist whose scars and charms dominate the tale. Her relationship to the land has transformed her life in unlikely ways. The Orchard keepers pays homage to her hypnotic freedom.
For filmmaker Bryony Dunne, what began as a short photography trip to focus on the few remaining orchards, evolved into a personal breakthrough. After living for a year with the Gabaliya tribe, she gained unique insight into the stratified tribal structures and layers of myth that enshroud the mountain region.
Director, Script, Camera: Bryony Dunne
Production: Les Film du Renard
Edit: Julien Schmid, Tamer Ashry
Language of dialogues: English, Arabic
Language of subtitles: English, Czech
Bryony Dunne is an Irish artist based in Cairo whose work engages Anthropology, Sociology, Ecology and Visual Arts. Her various projects have sought to explore human’s relationship with the landscape, and the evolution of cultivation and settlements. Working through installations, film and photography, she explores concepts of intangible cultural heritage, myths and traditional practices. She holds a position teaching still image at the German University in Cairo.
Ismallia International Film Festival, Egypt
Saratov International Film Festival, Russia
Banff Mountain International Film Festival, Alberta, Canada
Goldsmiths University, Dep. of Visual Anthropology, London, UK
German University, Cairo, Egypt
Bilbao Mountain Film Festival, Spain