Marina Willer on the importance of creativity in changing the world for the better

"I like to use my creativity to change the world a little bit," says the filmmaker and graphic designer.

Design Indaba caught up with Marina Willer following her talk at this year's Design Indaba Conference to find out more about her feature film, Red Trees.

The film is directed by Willer and shot by Oscar-nominated cinematographer César Charlone, who is best known for his work on films, City of God and The Constant Gardener. Together they retrace her father's journey from Prague to Rio.

She explained that the film is about the situation that the world finds itself in today from Brexit, the election of US president Donald Trump, migration and refugees.

Willer, who is also a partner at Pentagram (the world's largest independent design consultancy), is from one of only 12 Jewish families that survived the Nazi occupation of Prague during the Second World War. Her family fled to Brazil and she says that it was such a gift growing up in a place that is integrated. She feels that as intolerance rises in the world, whether it is how Muslim people are treated in the US or the tragic ways that refugees are treated, people can learn a lot from Brazil.

For Willer, who has worked with big brands like The Serpentine Gallery, Tate and Oxfam, it is not enough for her to spend time doing only work that is financially rewarding: "Life is too short to spend time doing things that are just finanicially interesting or something. I want to do things that are important to me."

She says making films is important to her and her film Red Trees, for example, is not about financial reward. The film was important to her to make whether it becomes commecially successful or not.

"Creativity can do a little bit to change things. Creativity is important when there is truth in it. I like to use my creativity to change the world a little bit."

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