Living 5,000 metres above sea level with her 300 goats, Tsering is one of the last shepherdesses in the far northern mountains of Ladakh, India. As she leads her flock of 300 sheep and Pashmina goats to graze on the 5500 m high Himalayan Plateaus in a dry and desolate landscape, Tsering is under the continuous threat of wolves and snow leopards.
Documented by her brother over four seasons, the film depicts both her world of icy loneliness and that unbreakable bond between humans and animals.
Shepherdess of the Glaciers has won the Grand Prize at the 2016 Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival.
“Half way around the world – the filmmakers’ ability to make an intimate and isolated existence “universal” is what makes this film at once moving and engaging,” said Elizabeth Yake, a member of the 2016 Banff Mountain Film Festival jury. “This expansive film absorbs the viewer into the conjoined, meditative world of a harsh environment – which includes the passing seasons, a barren mountainous landscape and the intimate relationship between humans and animals in their care.
She added: “Capturing a moment in time – quietly observing a spirited individual eking out a basic existence with all of life’s necessities -the filmmaker uncovers a life that is organic – filled with struggles- but ultimately a life abundant with awe and joy.”
Category winners for the 2016 Banff Mountain Film Competition include:
Grand Prize – Sponsored by MEC
Shepherdess of the Glaciers
(France, 2016, 74 min)
Director/Producer: Christiane Mordelet, Stanzin Dorjai
Production Company: Les Films de la Decouverte
Creative Excellence Award- Sponsored by Mountain Life Media
(Iceland/USA, 2016, 19 min)
Director: R.C. Cone
Producer: R.C. Cone, Elli Thor Magnus
Production Company: Tributaries Digital Cinema
Best Film – Exploration and Adventure – Sponsored by Vasque
Holy (un)Holy River
(USA, 2015, 60 min)
Director/Producer: Peter McBride, Jake Norton
Production Company: Mountain World and Pete McBride Productions
Best Film – Mountain Culture- Sponsored by Helly Hansen
Freedom Under Load
(Slovakia, 2016, 58 min)
Director: Pavol Barabas
Producer: Alena Koscova
Production Company: Ks studio s.r.o.
Best Film – Climbing – Sponsored by Alpine Club of Canada
Boys in the Bugs
(USA, 2016, 18 min)
Director: Zachary Barr, Peter Mortimer, Nick Rosen
Producer: Zachary Barr
Production Company: REEL ROCK
Best Film – Mountain Sports- Sponsored by Sea and Summit
(France, 2015, 16 min)
Director and Producer: Vladimir Cellier
Production Company: Baraka Films
Best Film: Snow Sports – Sponsored by Bergans of Norway and Norseman Outdoor Specialist
China: A Skier’s Journey
(Canada, 2016, 16 min)
Director and Producer: Jordan Manley
Production Company: Narrows Media Inc.
Best Film – Mountain Environment and Natural History – Sponsored by lululemon
KONELĪNE: our land beautiful
(Canada, 2015, 96 min)
Director: Nettie Wild
Producer: Betsy Carson
Production Company: Canada Wild Productions
Best Short Mountain Film – Sponsored by The North Face
(Norway, 2015, 11 min)
Director: Jorn Nyseth Ranum
Producer: Anders Graham
Production Company: Turbin Films AS
Best Feature Length Mountain Film – Sponsored by the Town of Banff
(Czech Republic, 2015, 100 min)
Director: David Kalek
Producer: Richard Nemec
Production Company: Verbascum s.r.o.
Special Jury Mention
Langtang: Summits of My Life III
(Spain, 2015, 52 min)
Director: Sebastien Montaz-Rosset
Producer: Jordi Lymbus
The Super Salmon
(USA, 2016, 25 min)
Director and Producer: Ryan Peterson
Production Company: Alaskanist Stories
People’s Choice Award for Radical Reels – Sponsored by Oboz Footwear
(USA, 2016, 30 min)
Director: Nick Rosen, Josh Lowell, Peter Mortimer
Producer: Zachary Barr
Production Company: REEL ROCK
People’s Choice Award – Sponsored by Osprey
(Canada, 2016, 28 min)
Director and Producer: Kelly Milner
Production Company: Shot in the Dark Productions
Jury members in 2016 included National Geographic Society’s Doug Bailey; Canadian born filmmaker, Ciaran Flannery; Vice Director of the Mountain Film Festival of Zakopane (Poland), Gabriella Kühn; Chamonix based UK mountain guide Victor Saunders, and Canadian producer Elizabeth Yake.
For more information on the 2016 Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival, please visit www.banffmountainfestival.ca.
2016 Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival images available here: https://www.banffcentre.ca/images
About Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival: Created 41 years ago, the Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival has become the premier event of its kind in the world. The nine-day Festival hosted by Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity in Banff, Canada, showcases the world’s best films, books and photographs on mountain subjects – climbing, culture, environment and natural history, exploration and adventure, wildlife, and sport – and attracts the biggest names in mountaineering, adventure filmmaking, and extreme sports as presenters and speakers. An international jury will also award over $50,000 in prizes for films and books submitted to this year’s Festival competitions.
Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival Partners: The Banff Mountain Film and Book Festival is presented by National Geographic and The North Face, and sponsored by Deuter, Clif Bar, Bergans of Norway, Treksta, and Mountain House, with support from PETZL, World Expeditions, Kicking Horse Coffee, Lake Louise Ski Resort and Summer Gondola, Mammut, Banff and Lake Louise Tourism, MEC, and the International Alliance for Mountain Film.
About Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity: Founded in 1933, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity is a learning organization built upon an extraordinary legacy of excellence in artistic and creative development. What started as a single course in drama has grown to become the global organization leading in arts, culture, and creativity across dozens of disciplines. From our home in the stunning Canadian Rocky Mountains, Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity aims to inspire everyone who attends our campus – artists, leaders, and thinkers – to unleash their creative potential and realize their unique contribution to society through cross-disciplinary learning opportunities, world-class performances, and public outreach. www.banffcentre.ca