~ Michał Krawczyk & Giulia Lepori

“Yuyos are all spontaneous plants that can be medicinal or simple herbs. There are yuyos that can be toxic and other that are beneficial for health.”

‘Yuyos’ is an ethnographic audio-visual project lived together with the peasant family Franco Gauto, in Colonia Luz Bella, Paraguay. The film documents their everyday life in relation to their ethnobotanical knowledge. By revealing the cultural importance attributed to medicinal plants, the protagonists enlighten their idea of agroecology as a way to face current ecological issues and crisis. As a matter of fact, Luz Bella’s community is socioenvironmentally at stake due to continuous deforestation to make room for industrial plantations and pastures. These not only threaten biodiversity – directly influencing the access to yuyos -, they also determine a notable cultural loss. 

Born to recover the natural medicine’s heritage of one family involved with agroecology, the ethnographic film speaks for a whole human and non-human community that is being transformed by deforestation. In a context of familiar sharing, eased by the social beverage of terere, yuyos become narrative agents spurring their human others to tell the stories of commitment and eco-resistance about their changing world.

Festival Internacional de Cine de la Patagonia: Tierra, Mujer, Hombre (Argentina, 2018)
“Reflecting on a Transforming World” International Society for Ethnology and Folklore (Spain, 2019)
“Evolving the Forest” Conference of the Royal Forestry Society (UK, 2019)
LASA Latin American Studies Association Film Festival (USA, 2019)
CinemAmbiente Film Festival (Italy, 2019)
Smaragdni Eco Film Festival (Croatia, 2019)
Geopoetics Symposium (Australia, 2019)
Eyes and Lenses Ethnographic Film Festival (Poland, 2019)

Tulum World Environment Film Festival (Mexico, 2019)
Festival de Cine / Hacer una escuela de cine comunitario (Argentina, 2019)
Kratovo Ethnological Film Festival (Macedonia, 2019)
FRICINE Festival Internacional de Cinema Socioambiental (Brasil, 2019)
Festival Cinematografico Internazionale sulle Foreste (Italy, 2019)
Agrofilm International Film Festival (Slovakia, 2019)
New Earth International Film Festival (Poland, 2019)
Firenze Archeofilm / Festival Internazionale del Cinema di Archeologia Arte Ambiente (Italy, 2022)