A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
This weekend if you walked down Haarlemmerstraat, the longest shopping street in Leiden, you may have noticed a number of gecko lizards curled up on the street, apparently sleeping. They were part of a campaign by some young girls who were trying to garner attention toward the Scholieren Filmfestival Leiden (SFL), a relatively small and independent film festival happening 13-17 April in Leiden. SFL is a subsidiary of the Leiden International Film Festival, and was created by students from 5 different high-schools.
I was on my way home, after a super awesome spontaneous sushi dinner at a friend’s place, when I saw someone drawing on the ground. Not having my camera, I had to continue home to grab it and my tripod if I wanted to catch this vandal in action. When I arrived back on scene SFL had been scribbled all over the place, and a circus of lizards lay scattered down the (quite long) street. I learned that the drawings were in chalk, and that there was actually a host of chalk-wielding ladies.
As a journalist, I was pleasantly surprised that these girls were breaking the norm to express creativity, and said I would promote their event to the international students of Leiden University here.
I asked one girl named Rosa how long each lizard took to draw. “Only a few seconds,” she said, showing me the stencil with which they were made. Even so, only a few seconds apiece could add up to a long time when I considered there were hundreds of the gecko drawings on the street. Quite the dedication!
So, if you are free on 13-17 April, go check out the SFL at Lido Cinema. During the day the films aren’t open for the public, but in the evening it’s open for everyone. Every evening they will show 5 different films; a combination of previews, world cinema (films that are neither in Dutch nor in English), and films you wouldn’t normally see in the cinema.