From the Series
Presented by Casimir, a South African-based publication that produces video, written and photographic content, Minerva’s Lilies is a short film directed by Amirah Tajdin.
The short film centres on two sisters, played by Ghanaian-British sisters Nayomi and Leah Agbotui-Dublin, aged nine and 10, relishing the joys of childhood. “Minerva’s Lilies centres on two sisters as they go through the motions of ‘being girls’, playing dress up, riding bicycles and performing make believe rituals,” says Amirah.
Minerva’s Lilies is set to a Swahili Taarab song – a genre of music created by a combination of rhythmic and poetic Swahili song interspersed with Arabic and Indian melodies. The music is indigenous to Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and other regions in the interior of East Africa.
Shot against a dusty-pink Dubai sunset the film not only emphasises the experiences of sisterhood these between two young girls but also the experiences of their mother watching over them perched while carefully on the edge of their innocent joy.
The film is a personal reflection for Amirah: Minerva’s Lillie’s is a meditation on femininity that I weaved up after watching my mother deal with her daughters leaving the house and her re-assessing her sense of womanhood outside of her primary identity of motherhood after 30 years,” says Taijin.
In a true celebration of sisterhood, Minerva’s Lilies is produced Tajdin’s sister Wafa Tajdin. Wafa produces films made by independent female directors in both Africa and the Middle East
In 2011, the Tajdin sisters founded Seven Thirty Films, an African-based indie production company. The sisters are working on their first feature film, Hawa Hawaii set in the Swahili community of Mombasa, Kenya.
This film was originally published on African Digital Art