Breaker of Horses

Directors: Pernille Lystlund Matzen and Nanna Rebekka
Producer: Marta Mleczek
Composer: Aske Zidore

An easily overlooked T-junction in Copenhagen’s Sydhavn district is the location of a dramatic statue. In the midst of everyday urban space rises a bronze sculpture of a young man who is about to tame two unruly horses. The essay film ‘Breaker of Horses’ delves into the bronze sculpture and follows the hidden stories that are contained in the cast. This leads us back to the genesis of the sculpture in an antique Greek myth, to a Belgian Africa museum and deep into Europe’s colonial past. With formal nods to contemporary video artists such as Camille Henrot and Hito Steyerl, ‘Breaker of Horses’ is an overheated information flow of images, digital productions and archive material. The visual abundance is coloured by a soundtrack that alternately seethes with synthetic sound effects and detached bits of songs about the statue and its history. The film traces the copper material in the bronze sculpture back to the Congo, where extraction of copper through forced labour and slavelike conditions for the Congolese comprised one of the economical foundations for the Belgian King Leopold’s empire. Solidly placed in the era of today, ‘Breaker of Horses’ is a video work that turns to the past.

Original title: Hestebetvinger
Length: 14min 50sek
Format: digital film file HD
Language: Danish
Subtitles: English
Sound: Stereo
Aspect ratio: 16:9


Written and directed by:
Nanna Rebekka & Pernille Lystlund Matzen

Produced by:
Marta Mleczek

Torben Kjelstrup
Nanna Rebekka & Pernille Lystlund Matzen

Nanna Rebekka & Pernille Lystlund Matzen

Tim Söderström

Music composed and produced by Aske Zidore
Vocals composed by Jannis Noya & Aske Zidore

Vocals: Jannis Noya
Choir: Pernille Zidore
Clarinets: Lars Greve
Keyboards: Sune Zacharias
Various instruments: Aske Zidore

With support from:
Filmværkstedet / DFI & Nordisk Film Production