THE SWITCHERS

DOCUMENTARY

Supporting sustainable consumption and
production practices for a circular economy in the Mediterranean.

Switchmed is a programme funded by the European Union that aims to support and connect so-called Switchers, who are individuals or companies that are developing eco and social innovative solutions within the Mediterranean region.

Folch Studio, who developped the identity and communication strategy for Switchmed, wanted to show the beautiful people of the Southern Mediterranean while framing the green initiatives through brand journalism.

I was sent on a mission, document through video and photography, the activities of two selected changemakers: Mornag Eco Farm in Tunisia and Cycling Circle in Lebanon.

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AMINE DRAOUI, FOUNDER OF MORNAG ECO FARM, TUNIS

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KARIM SOKHN, FOUNDER OF CYCLING CIRCLE, BEIRUT

First I flew to Tunis, Tunisia, to meet Amine Draoui, founder of  Mornag Eco Farm, who wants to preserve forgotten traditional techniques around agriculture, sustainable construction and resource management that are more efficient than the modern ones.  

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ROOF OF AN ECODOME  AT MORNAG ECO FARM ©Jean-Marc Joseph

There are skills and trades which are disappearing. At Mornag Eco Farm, Amine and his team is trying modestly to make them last.

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IN TUNISIA, TRADITIONALLY, GOAT HORNS WERE USED TO MANUALLY HARVEST OLIVES FROM THE TREES AND PROTECT THE FINGERS OF THE WORKERS. SPECIALIZED CRAFTMEN WOULD HEAT THE HORNS AND SHAPE THEM METICULOUSLY TO ADAPT THEM TO EACH HAND. TODAY, ENTIRE OLIVE TREES ARE SHAKED BY MECHANICAL ARMS THAT CAUSES STRESS TO THE TRUNK AND THE ROOTS BUT SPEED UP THE PROCESS DRAMATICALLY. AT MORNAG ECO FARM, AMINE TEACHES TO THE YOUNG GENERATION THIS ANCIENT KNOWLEDGE. HIMSELF, RECALLS THAT AS A KID, HE WOULD CALL IT "THE DINOSAUR'S FEET"

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AMINE IS THE FOUNDER OF MORNAG ECO FARM, AN EDUCATIONAL FARM SITUATED AT 20KM FROM TUNIS, TUNISIA. AFTER IT'S STUDIES OF HYDRO-GEOLOGY, AMINE INVERTED ALL IT'S ENERGY AND TALENT IN THE CREATION OF IT'S FARM WHERE HE TEACHES AND TRANSMIT THE FORGOTTEN KNOWLEDGE OF SUSTAINABLE AND AUTONOMOUS LIFE-STYLE.

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LOFTI IS THE FATHER OF AMINE. WHEN I MET THIS EXPRESSIVE GRAY HAIRED AIRPLANE CAPTAIN, HE TOLD ME: "WE ARE A FAMILY OF PILOTS HERE! TWO OF MY SONS AND MY DAUGHTER ARE PILOTS... BUT WHEN I TRIED TO CONVINCE AMINE TO ALSO STUDY AVIATION, HE ALWAYS REPLIED ME THAT BEING A PILOT IS LIKE BEING A BUS DRIVER, IT'S BORING AND NON-CREATIVE!" 

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CHILIES ARE DRYING IN THE SUN. AMINE IS DRAWING ON TUNISIA'S ROOTS USING TRADITIONAL TECHNIQUES, ESPECIALLY FOR AGRICULTURE.

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AMINE COLLECTS FRESH EGGS IN A STRUCTURE ENTIRELY BUILDT WITH TEXTILE AND EARTH

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AMINE BUILDS A ROOF USING TRADITIONAL TECHNIQUES.

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THE SUPER ADOBE CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUE HAS BEEN INVENTED IRANIAN ARCHITECT NADER KAHLILI AND SIMPLY CONSISTS OF PILED UP BAGS FILLED WITH EARTH OF SAND. IT RESISTS TO EARTHQUAKES, FLOODS, FIRE OR EVEN BULLETS, AND IS EXTREMELY CHEAP.

THE UNITED NATIONS HAVE BUILD SUPER ADOBE SHELTERS FOR THE REFUGEES OF EARTHQUAKES IN IRAN IN 2002 AND PAKISTAN IN 2005 WHICH PROVE TO BE MUCH MORE CONVINIENT THAN TENTS BY OFFERING AN EFFICIENT THERMAL AND SONIC ISOLATION.

TITLE: The Switchers - Mornag Eco Farm
TIME OF YOUR LIFE REQUIRED: 4 Min 15 Sec
MY ROLE: Director / Producer / Camera / Editor

KEYWORDS: #Sustainability #Agriculture #Mediterranean #Optimism

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AMINE BUILD A ROOF USING TRADITIONAL TECHNIQUES AT MORNAG ECO FARM     ©Jean-Marc Joseph

From Tunis, I flew to Beirut, Lebanon, to meet Karim Sokhn, founder of Cycling Circle, who fights to to develop a bicycle culture in the bustling capital city notorious for its car culture, congestion and pollution.

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GRAFFITTI BY @the.chain.effect    ©Jean-Marc Joseph

In order to raise public awareness about cycling, Cycling Circle organizes activities such as night rides and cultural excursions taken on two wheels while Deghri Messenger provides a fast and sustainable delivery service across the city. 

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KARIM IS THE FOUNDER OF CYCLING CIRCLE, LEBANON'S LARGEST ACTIVE CYCLIST COMMUNITY. CYCLING CIRCLE ENCOURAGE AND PROMOTE SAFE BICYCLE RIDING FOR TRANSPORTATION, RECREATION AND FITNESS AND STIMULATE GOOD RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CYCLISTS AND MOTORISTS. KARIM AND IT'S TEAM WORK ON THIS AMBITIOUS GOAL BY ORGANIZING BIKE TOURS, NIGHT RIDES IN THE CITY, CYCLING EVENTS AND OTHER ACTIVITIES... 

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ZEIN, IS A BIKE MESSENGER AT DEGHRI MESSENGER, THE ONLY COMPANY OF BEIRUT THAT DELIVERS BY BICYCLE. IN A CITY WITH BARELY NO PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION AND NO BIKE LANES, HE CONSIDER THAT IT'S MISSION GOES MUCH FURTHER THAN THE DELIVERY OF A PACKAGE... "I HOPE IL CAN DEMONSTRATE TO EVERYONE THAT BIKING IS A FASTER AND NON POLLUTING WAY TO MOVE IN A CAR-DEPENDING CITY LIKE BEIRUT" HE PROUDLY SAYS

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CARGO BIKE USED BY DEGHRI MESSENGER. IN ARABIC, DEGHRI MEANS 'FAST'.

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MONZER IS A BIKE MECHANIC THAT WORKS AT BIKE GENERATION, A SHOP THAT COLLABORATES WITH THE CYCLING CIRCLE MOVEMENT BY PROVIDING LOGISTIC SUPPORT. THE SHOP WAS PARTLY DESTROYED BY THE EXPLOSION IN THE PORT OF BEIRUT ON THE 4TH OF AUGUST 2020.

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KARIM, FOUNDER OF CYCLING CIRCLE ALSO CREATED THE ONLY BIKE DELIVERY SERVICE OF BEIRUT, DEGHRI MESSENGER.

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KARIM DURING A WEEKLY NIGHT RIDE HE ORGANIZES TO PROMOTE BICYCLE CULTURE IN BEIRUT.

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ZEINA IS THE FOUNDER OF THE CHAIN EFFECT, A MOVEMENT THAT PROMOTE CYCLING THROUGH STREET ART IN BEIRUT, LEBANON

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MAHMOD TOLD ME: "A TRUCK HIT ME AND MY BICYCLE WAS LITTERALY CUT IN 9 PIECES... LUCKILY I'M SAFE. THERE IS SO MUCH TRAFFIC IN BEIRUT THAT NOBODY CAN REALLY DRIVE VERY FAST" HE ADDED LAUGHING. ORIGINALY FROM SYRIA, LIVING IN BEIRUT SINCE 2 YEARS, MAHMOD WORKS AS A BIKE MESSENGER AT DEGHRI MESSENGER.

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CHRISTINA AND I MET DURING HER 3 MONTHS INTERNSHIP IN BARCELONA. I COULD NEVER IMAGINE THAT YEARS LATER, WE WOULD MEET AGAIN IN HER HOME TOWN. CHRISTINA HAS 6 CATS AND WORKS AS CREATIVE AT AD AGENCY LEO BURNETT. SHE COMUTES BY BIKE AND SUPPORTS CYCLING CIRCLE.

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NUBAR IS THE OWNER OF CYCLOSPORT GEMAYZE, ONE OF THE OLDEST BIKE SHOP OF BEIRUT, LEBANON. HE COLLABORATES WITH CYCLING CIRCLE TO PROVIDE BIKE RENTAL WHEN THEY ORGANISE NIGHT RIDES THROUGH THE CITY. BY PROMOTING THE USE OF BICYCLE, CYCLING CIRCLE ALSO GENERATE COLATERAL ECONOMICAL AND ECO-FRIENDLY ACTIVITY. 

TITLE: The Switchers - Cycling Circle
TIME OF YOUR LIFE REQUIRED: 4 Min 37
MY ROLE: Director / Producer / Camera / Editor

KEYWORDS: #Portrait #Lebanon #Mobility #Community

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THIS FILM WAS SELECTED IN THREE INTERNATIONAL FESTIVALS 

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WEEKLY NIGHT RIDE WITH CYCLING CIRCLE

Making both video and still photography is challenging when you're on your own. Something interesting happens spontaneously, and you have to instantly choose between capturing the moment with a still image or a video”

The Switchers exhibition at CCCB

The exhibition "The Switchers", designed by Folch, was held in CCCB in the framework of the SwitchMed Connect yearly event.

Spread out in the exhibition hall, the films and photographs where exhibited on big screens and printed columns together with other videos and images shot in other countries by Goroka.

Both switchers, Karim and Amine were invited at the event and had the rewarding experience to see their hard work showcased in front an international audience. 

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The newspaper “The Big Picture”, designed by Folch, was launched as a support for the exhibition. Through my photographs and the editorial content, the public was introduced to The SwitchMed program and the ideas behind The Switchers initiative.

 

“In terms of reward, being able to combine your passions with your professional work to create something that has a real ethical value by trying to inspire more people to make ‘the switch’, just gives a whole sense to what I’m doing as a visual storyteller.”

CREDITS

Client
SWITCHMED

Strategy / Communication / Exhibition
FOLCH

Production / Filming / Editing
JEAN-MARC JOSEPH

Colorgrading 
ALBERT MUÑOZ

Music
THE MUSICBED

Still Photography
JEAN-MARC JOSEPH

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Phone: +34 679 75 56 40
Email: jm@superjeanmarc.com