Together, Samira and Ania created the artist/scholar duo SAMANIA. They´ve done a lot of interesting projects that you should check out!  Their latest project is an American independent film called Enigma of Being Awake. I asked them a few questions about the film and about SAMANIA.

Where did you meet each other?

SAMANIA: We met in London; we were both doing our postgraduate studies at the London School of Economics Gender Institute and had a few classes together. One day after seminar we started talking and clicked immediately, then everything unfolded from there.

What is SAMANIA and how did you come up with the name?

SAMANIA:  SAMANIA is the combination of our names SAMira and ANIA. However, we also like that the name contains the word “mania” (mental hyperactivity, enthusiasm, mood elevation, borderline madness). While it is a term used in the mental illness literature, in a way, a light manic state can be apparent and useful in the creative process.

Tell us about the film ´´Enigma of Being Awake´´ that SAMANIA is starring in?

SAMANIA: Enigma of Being Awake is an American independent film directed by Emmeline Kim. We play the two main characters, Charlie (Samira) and Lux (Ania), who are both artists. Our characters meet when their paths cross through work and they fall in love; the film follows their relationship over the course of one year. There is a lot of talk about “strong female characters” right now in Hollywood, but what’s most important to us about this film is that the characters are complex. They are not defined by their backgrounds, their sexual orientation, their location; they are both evolving and dealing with the complexity of an examined life. We are hoping that people from all walks of life will be able to relate to the characters on a human level and will connect to the journeys within themselves and with each other.

How can we help SAMANIA kickstart  ´´Enigma of Being Awake´´?

SAMANIA: Enigma of Being Awake currently has a Kickstarter campaign live, which you can find here:​ – By sharing this link and donating (even if it’s just a few dollars!) you are helping us bring this story to life as well as supporting women in film. We find it crucial to have women telling women’s stories, and as Emmeline is our friend as well as the writer/director of the film, the creative process has been both intimate and collaborative, making it a truly unique project.

What are the plans for SAMANIA in the future?

SAMANIA: In the future, we hope to continue creating work that combines movement, performance, photography, film, theory, and an editorial aesthetic that is grounded in political and social critique around the subjects of gender, coloniality, and sexuality.​ We have a couple art photography projects in the works, plan to write articles/essays as a duo, and are looking forward to also collaborating with different artists to explore even more avenues of creative expression.


I recommend contributing so Enigma of Being Awake can be completed!

To learn more about SAMANIA check out​ and follow @bysamania