Curandera is a documentary film that bring us the ancient wisdom related with the use of medicinal plants and ceremonies used by the women called curanderas in Peru.
Through the production of this documentary film, we are aiming to show the curandera women role as an expert in healing techniques, going in deep as well on the process of preservation and transmission of those techniques.
Additionally, we will show three master plants that are being used in ceremonies and rituals: Ayahuasca, Coca leaf and Wachuma.
To reach or purpose, we will go through the local communities on the coast, mountains and jungle in Peru to hear about the testimonies of three women curanderas, and the challenges they had to face in order to make healing with master plants their life dedication.
Our motivation to produce this documentary film is to create an audiovisual registry for this system of millenary wisdoms that belongs to the cultural heritage, and to disseminate this knowledge. Therefore, once our documentary is published, will be distributed and shared for free online.
Three women from different Peru regions are showing us the different paths that made them to become curanderas. Each of them keep the healing secret with master plants from the coast, mountains and jungle. The way to develop their career wasn’t exactly easy, due to the numerous issues they had to face just for the fact of being woman…
Who is a curandera?
It is a woman who uses medicinal plants, as well as other traditional healing techniques, to cure physical illnesses, taking in consideration the emotional and spiritual dimension of the human being. This healing process is taking part in ceremonies or rituals with ancient origin, and its diffusion it has been generally done via oral.
What it is Ayahuasca?
It it a vine grown in Amazonia whose potion has a millenary origin in the Amazonia communities. This drink is used to reach the access to a superior consciousness state and a physical, emotional and spiritual purification for those who consume it.
The consumption of Ayahuasca is done in a ritual or ceremony context, lead by someone who knows its use, effects and its medicinal power.
What it is Coca?
Coca is a plant originally from Andes mountains which use has been common in different cultures, because is considered a master plant. In fact it is frequently called Andes sacred leaf. It is been used in rituals to connect the human being with the mother earth, as well as for therapeutic purposes for its medicinal and nutritive attributes.
What is Wachuma?
Wachuma (also called San Pedro), is a cactus that has been used for millenniums for medicinal purposes in religious rituals. The take is on a liquid drink and it has the effect to produce altered consciousness states to dig in the subconscious of those who consume it. Additionally, is used as well for the treatment of different kind of illnesses.
Who we are?
María Dolores Hernández Hernández (Murcia, 1986), Social and Community Phycologist. Film director
Julio Trino Blanca Vergara (Granada, 1979), Social Worker and Cultural Agent. Producer
Luis Adolfo Chumbe Mamani (Iquitos, 1992) and Daniel Mendivil (Lima, 1983), Audiovisual Communicators. Cameraman and Sound Engineer.
Pamela Valle Palomo (Lima,1985), Graphic Designer and Artist. Image Designer
Both together and separate we have already participated in different short films and documentary films shooting, as well as in the organization of cultural festivals and projection of independent films in many cities around Peru.
Now we are aiming to start the challenge of shooting the documental film Curandera. First of all, we are in preproduction stage, which means doing a deep research about the main topic, to visit the different localizations where the documental will be taken place, and to make some interviews to the protagonists.
During this preproduction stage, which started in January this year and we are expecting to end up in December, we will be shooting as well a short film that will be based on Otilia´s story, one of the protagonists of the documental.
To make this possible we are counting on your help, and we would really appreciate if you decide to become our sponsor.
Why we want to make this documentary film?
There are several reasons why we think this is a very positive project:
• Show the role of the woman curandera as a symbol or power and keeper of the immaterial cultural heritage related with the knowledge and use of medicinal plants to reestablish the physical, psychological and emotional wellness of the human being.
• To tribute to the curandera woman through the documental protagonists and let the audience to know their homelands and their stories.
• To disseminate the existence of priestess and women governors in Peru history.
• To emphasize Peru intercultural wealth and still remain nowadays ancestral knowledge developed by those curandera women.
• To generate an exchange of ancestral wisdoms between this three women in a multicultural environment.
Where will be shooting the documentary film?
The locations will be as follows:
• Amazonia. Iquitos, capital of Loreto department.
• Andes mountains. Ayacucho, ancient capital of Wari empire.
• Coast. Trujillo, capital of La Libertad department and Aspe community.
• Lima. Peru capital, we will visit one of the most emblematic street market in Peru ´´La Parada´´, where is being sold a wide range of medicinal plants, and natural medicines by curanderos from different parts of Peru.
What we will use your contribution for?
Collected money will be used for funding technical expenses during documental preproduction process, as well for shooting the short film about Otilia.
Also, part of the money will be used for buying the reward gifts to the artisans association for those who contribute on the project, and for delivery expenses.
About the rewards
The products that will be sent to the contributors are all made in artisan way.
Each of the reward gifts is an unique product made with traditional techniques in different parts of Peru, using raw materials such as seeds, ceramic, weaves, etc.
These are some of the reward gifts that we will send to the contributors:
Kené weave made by artisan women from shipibo-conibo ethnic from Peru Amazonia.
Necklace made of seeds from Peru Amazonia.
Handmade dolly done by artisan women in Ayacucho mountains, and handmade carved maraca.
Florida Water bottles, a perfume made of amber base, musk and benjui, used in ceremonies and energetic cleans.
By supporting this campaign fund not only make possible to produce Curandera documental film but collaborating with fair and responsible trading in associations that all these artisan women belong to
When will I receive my reward gift?
Reward gifts will be sent to the contributors within November and December this year.
What would happened if I overcome the minimum amount asked for on the fund campaign?
Those funds would be applied for improving the technical quality in the short film, and to start filming the documental.
Preproduction stage started in January this year and will end up in December.
The short film will be shot during August and September.
Reward gifts will be delivered during November and December.
At the beginning of 2018 we will start filming Curandera.