Prendere la parola (Taking the Word) by Perla, produced in 2019 by Berenice Film, is a film-documentary that offers an intimate and respectful look at foreign women learning Italian during their classes, without hiding their mistakes or linguistic challenges. The author, Perla, steps in as a discreet observer during these learning sessions, respecting the women’s process of self-determination in presenting themselves as they wish. The film aims to emphasise the importance of dialogue and communication as tools for empowerment and identity construction.
Taking the Word was shaped by a quote from a review of the film “Black Diamond” by Pietro Bianchi, which provoked reflection on issues related to the power of words and their representation in people’s stories. The title of this project is a deliberate choice that reveals deep shades of meaning, but more importantly to emphasise a gesture of considerable importance: the act of claiming speech. Contrary to the traditional idea that speaking is already available and requires no effort, the title suggests that communication requires a deliberate act of self-assertion, highlighting the centrality of language in the process of personal empowerment and community building. Perla’s sensitivity is a key element that underscores her commitment to trying to address social and gender issues, using a variety of artistic forms to give voice to those who are often on the margins of society.
Taking the Word was received at various film festivals and was awarded best film in the “PROSPETTIVE” section at the FILMMAKER FESTIVAL (IT) in 2019.
Perla Sardella (Jesi, *1991) is a filmmaker and artist, with an MFA in Multimedia Arts and Cinema from the Brera Academy of Fine Arts in Milan. Her works have been exhibited in Italian and international galleries, including MACTE, Burel Museum, smART Foundation (IT) and Biennale Mulhouse (FR). Besides being a filmmaker, she has also been a teacher, tutor and assistant in film workshops and has worked in audiovisual productions, video editing and art production. She is part of a transfeminist collective, COLLA, which acts in and around Jesi. She lives and works in Genoa.