Gariné Torossian
Gariné Torossian was born in 1970, in Beirut, Lebanon; the child of Armenian parents. She spent her childhood in the Armenian ghetto of Beirut, "Bourj Hamoud", before moving to Canada with her parents at the age of nine. After studying Film and Photography at the York University Toronto and subsequently working as a photographer, she began concentrating on film direction. Gariné Torossian refers to herself as a "self-taught filmmaker", a fact underlined by her diverse and comprehensive filmography.

Gariné Torossian began to realise her first short films at the age of 22. So far, she has usually taken on responsibility for the camera work and editing of her own films, as well as the direction. She received her first award at the Melbourne International Film Festival for "Girl from Moush" (1994). This early work – assembled pictorial sequences of an imagined Armenia, emerging from the artist's subconscious – marks the beginning of her investigation into and visual approaches to an imagined home country.
Since the mid-90s, she has regularly produced short films, often supported by the Ontario Arts Council or the Canada Council for the Arts. Gariné Torossian was first represented at the Berlinale by a short film in 1999: "Sparklehorse" (1999), inspired by three songs by the music group of the same name, received a commendation. In 2002, she won the Panorama short film prize at the Berlinale for "Babies on the Sun" (2001) - five impressive minutes in which Torossian nostalgically traces memories of childhood.

The filmmaker received first awards for her experimental film "Hokees" (2000) at the film festivals in Affma and Houston. "Hokees" means "soul" in Armenian. The film tells the story of Anahida, an Armenian woman, who is pregnant with the child of her Turkish lover. Here, Torossian's pictorial language fluctuates between dream and reality and past and present, lending the film an emotionally charged, visual power. Like all her other short films, such as "Dust" (2000), "Garden in Khorkhom" (2003) and "Sandia's Eustasy" (2004), this work is an indication of Torossian's wide range of expressive possibilities, her joy in experimenting with colour, film and video formats, and in lively exchange with other arts such as dance, painting and music. Her films focus on notions of memory, longing, identity – and this is also true of her most recent work (and first feature film) "Stone, Time, Touch" (2006), which, in the words of the filmmaker, represents a temporary answer to ten years of investigation into her own origins. Today, Torossian's filmography comprises 18 works, most of which could be seen at festivals at home and abroad, as well as in museums (e.g. in the Modern Museum of Art in New York).

During her fellowship in Berlin, Gariné Torossian would like to devote a chapter to her own history, to life in the Armenian ghetto "Bourj Hamoud" in Beirut, from which she and her family originated. Gariné Torossian lives and works as an independent filmmaker in Toronto.