Screening of Gringo Trails, followed by a discussion with Pegi Vail
Pegi Vail is an anthropologist, filmmaker, and curator whose academic work has focused on visual anthropology, Indigenous media and on the political economy of tourism in the developing world. Her award-winning documentary Gringo Trails (Icarus Films/Andana Films) looks at the long term cultural and environmental effects of global tourism. The feature-length documentary raises urgent questions about one of the most powerful globalizing forces of our time: tourism. Spanning South America, Africa and Asia, the tourist pathway known as the “gringo trail” has facilitated both life-altering adventures and the despoiling of many once virgin environments. The film follows stories along the trail to reveal the complex relationships between colliding cultures: host countries hungry for financial security and the tourists who provide it in their quest for authentic experiences.
Vail has taught on Film and Culture at NYU and Columbia University Anthropology Departments; Tourist Productions in the NYU Performance Studies Program; and documentary filmmaking through the NYU Department of Anthropology’s Culture and Media Program. She is a former Fulbright scholar who has additionally lectured on travel study tours. As a curator, she has collaborated with colleagues at NYC arts and cultural institutions such as the National Museum of the American Indian, American Museum of Natural History, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and through organizations such as the The Moth, the storytelling collective she was a founding boardmember, curator, and storytelling alumna for. Vail additionally has served as a judge for the World Travel Tourism Council’s Tourism for Tomorrow Awards and currently for National Geographic’s World Legacy Awards. Most recently, she was the cultural consultant for Felix & Paul Studios’ “Nomads” virtual reality experience for Oculus / Samsung. More info: pegivail.com
The event is organized in cooperation with the Department of Sociology and Social Anthroplogy and will be followed by a reception.