Faber Navalis

Faber Navalis is Latin for boat builder, words in an ancient language for describing an ancient profession. This might seem to be a film just about the restoration of a wooden ship, but the actual subject of this documentary is the state of mind of its shipwright: an Italian researcher in maritime ethnography who decided to learn boat building skills in order to understand the intangible knowledge hidden behind the construction of a wooden ship. This film is an experiment in autobiographical ethnography, in which the shipwright is also the filmmaker; a combination of aesthetics and ethnography that attempts to bring out an inner dimension that may only with difficulty, if it all, be rendered without propositional prose.

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