82 minutos / 2021 / Galicia
[Preview in Galicia]
Direction and screenplay: Sabela Iglesias and Adriana P. Villanueva
Production: Illa Bufarda
Camera operators: Pilar Abades and Sabela Iglesias
Live sound: Adriana P. Villanueva
Sound post-production: Marco Maril
Editing: Sabela Iglesias
Editing assistants: Pilar Abades and Adriana P. Villanueva
Musical score: Paulo Pascual
Graphic design: Pilar Abades
Negro Púrpura portrays twentieth-century Galicia via the Claviceps purpurea, a hallucinogenic fungus that grows in cereals and opens the door to a history equally curious, surprising, and unknown as important for the cultural and economic development of an era. Cockspur rye, ergot, cornezuelo, mother of rye, cockspur… this fungus of a thousand names connects us to the rest of the world and feeds the stories from the neighbour’s doorstep to multinational pharmaceutical companies and the CIA; from medieval plagues to folk medicine, to LSD. Scattered stories that leave the bitter taste of rye bread and reverberate across oceans. A crust that holds a delirious crumb.
Detail: This documentary travels back in time to tell the fascinating, true story of this fungus that takes place in the duality of opposing worlds: life and death, old-wives remedies and science, the subsistence economy and international industry, religion and psychedelia… Through first-hand accounts we open the door to a world that puts Galicia at the centre of the map, where collectors, traders, midwives, scientists, entrepreneurs, farmers and labourers tell a story that leaves the bitter aftertaste of rye bread, of bread with unrefined flours of which we are not yet fully aware.