In celebrations of cinema short films are generally overlooked, compared to the conventional full length feature films. There is something intrinsically special about short films. Short films are like life itself, with myriad colours and nuances, each transient yet for ever. There are many quirky, intimate, unfinished aspects of human existence which can best be conveyed only in a short film format. Further, since this kind of filmmaking faces less commercial pressures (cheaper to produce, hence financial gain not the only consideration), it is more likely to explore cinematic form and frontlines, allowing marginal and non-mainstream stories to be told.

People involved in making short films mostly just stop there; and lot of films thus never reach the audience, their authors neither having the will nor the wherewithal to proceed further. The available exhibition avenues haven’t also caught up with the noticeable increase in the number of short films being made (what with the relatively cheap DSLR-Laptop combo having aroused the latent filmmaker in most of us). Further, most such spaces are dominated by older established filmmakers, leaving no platform for the large number of under-30 talents. There is need for a venue and an occasion where these young, enthusiastic and often innovative filmmakers are recognized and celebrated.

At the Film & Video Communication department in the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad, India we have been promoting short filmmaking for over two decades now. Through these years our students and faculty have created numerous short fiction and documentary films, and the artistic quality and social relevance of these films have been recognized the world over. Our alumni occupy important creative positions in the moving image industry, in India and abroad. Thus it’s time we played a more active role in establishing a credible exhibition platform for short films – especially those given life by the under-30.With Alpavirama 2011 we made a small but significant start in that regard. Alpavirama 2014 should see us consolidate and draw in wider participation and perspectives.

The 21st century is commonly believed to belong to Asia. Within Asia, South Asia plays a very important role. It is at once a point of arrival and departure, a seamless link between the so-called orient and the occident. But the subcontinent’s enormous (and increasingly demonstrated) potential has been needlessly inhibited by fratricidal dissension & strife. South Asian short films are alive to these dilemmas, the filmmakers subtly foregrounding the frustrations, pain and promise of South Asian life, in their cine tales, underscoring the basic desire of all human beings to live in peace and harmony.Alpavirama 2014 welcomes Afghanistan into its existing South Asian fold, comprising of Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.