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Loten Namling, tirelessly dedicated his entire musical life to the freedom and struggle of the Tibetan people. Today, his covers of old Tibetan songs, fusions and creations are recognised to be one of the finest examples of Tibetan arts and culture.His determination in keeping Tibetan culture alive and contributions to it by bringing in new elements and connections are of utmost value and importance to our common human heritage to why EthnoKino film festival committee recognises him as the star of peace and culture.


THE ETHNOKINO AWARD OF LIFETIME RECOGNITION 2021 celebrates the ethnographic documentary ‘The Healer and the Psychiatrist’, as the result of twenty three years of committed research in Tonga, realised through a culturally appropriate and valued process, and as part of continued contribution to Tongan health. We award the prize to the medical and visual anthropologist, Dr Mike Poltorak, at the midpoint of the life of a film born of responsibility and commitment to improved health care in Tonga and for the Tongan diaspora. The documentary has gained global recognition through screenings at global festivals and events and has won awards such as Best Feature Film for the Society of Visual Anthropology Film and Media Festival, Best Cinematography for the Collected Voices Film Festival as well as a commendation for the Richard Werbner Award for Visual Ethnography. This Award draws attention to the lifetime commitment made by Dr Poltorak demonstrated by the building and tending of relationships in Tonga, also demonstrated by the allied interactive project, Project Pouono. We also recognise the degree to which the Healer and the Psychiatrist follows a series of documentaries that have also involved long and sensitive involvement in  communities, related to the theme of social health. The films include  Fun(d)raising: The Secret of Tongan Comedy (2010), One Week West of Molkom (2013) and Five Ways In(2014). 


Jwan Abdo's first short docu-fiction film “PARALLEL”  is deserving of an AWARD OF RECOGNITION  for its decisive, elegant storytelling and outstanding camera work. Staged in a cozy Berliner cafe, the film is based on a heartwarming conversation about love and war between two strangers coming from parallel worlds. Jwan masterfully captures an instant human connection within the mundane of the everyday. 


Malaz Usta’s first short documentary film is deserving of an AWARD OF RECOGNITION  for its innovative editing,  affective storytelling concept and outstanding camera work. A personal account of the four seasons of “A Year in Exile”,  the filmmaker masterfully takes the audience into the magical streets of Istanbul through a disoriented ballad of speedy and slowed down images, accompanied by his feelings, as he explores notions of identity, belonging and longing in great depths through a uniquely displaced angle of vision.

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