Ningwasum: Film Screening and Q&A with Director Subash Thebe Limbu

October 19, 2022

Based on ethnographic research, the science fiction doc Ningwasum places the Indigenous Yakthung community of Nepal in a futuristic scenario

Developed from extensive ethnographic research, the science fiction documentary Ningwasum places the Indigenous Yakthung community from eastern Nepal in a futuristic space travel scenario. Ningwasum is centred around two Indigenous astronauts and time travellers from an alternative future, in which a Yakthung nation coexists with other nations and allies that have created their own advanced technology. The film explores concepts of time, memory, and belonging as well as experiences of colonization and cultural erasure. It imagines a future in which Indigenous people have asserted their identities through the use of technology, a creative space that film maker Subash Thebe calls “Adivasi Futurism.” Filmed mostly in the Himalayas including the Wasanglung region of eastern Nepal, which is believed to be the shamanic home of the Yakthung people, Ningwasum is spoken entirely in the Yakthung language and weaves oral narratives, animation, and electronic music into its storytelling. It features Subin Limbu and Shanta Nepali as time travellers from the future.


Subash Thebe Limbu is a Yakthung visual artist based in Kathmandu, Nepal and London, United Kingdom. Working with film, sound, performance, and painting, he draws on science and speculative fiction to address Indigenous struggles resulting from the effects of colonization and climate change. Subash also produces Antariksa, a series of podcasts that explores current socio-political issues in Nepal and the Himalayan region.

Subash graduated with an MA in Fine Art from Central Saint Martins at the University of the Arts London (2016), where he received an UAL Vice Chancellors International Scholarship. He also holds a BA in Fine Art from Middlesex University and an Intermediate in Fine Art from Lalit Kala Campus in Kathmandu.