The International Fine Arts Film Festival is an annual event, on line in 2023, which showcases independent films focusing on the disciplines of the arts from around the world. This year we have selected 27 films in four categories, plus Original Score. Our goal is to provide a platform for anyone, up-and-coming or professional, to showcase their creative work. We learn from each other; the culture the techniques the people involved who are working in the arts to make a better world.
Winners Will Be Announced the First Week of November!
Linda Wingerter, Director
A quiet bus ride home from the city library turns into an aural nightmare for a book-reading commuter. With every stop the bus fills with people and sounds, becoming a chaotic cacophony joyful to everyone but her. Only when the bus finally reaches her seaside stop does she find escape, slipping back into the watery silence of her natural habitat where we discover she is not the average commuter.
Misophonia's richly layered and textured world transcends the humble reused materials it’s made from. Filmed with live-performed puppetry on a multiplane stage, puppets made from pizza boxes elegantly move through breathtaking cityscapes of vintage papers and painted cellophane, immersed in an ever-building atmosphere of sound.
Misophonia is a film by The Stringpullers Puppet Company, commissioned by Heather Henson’s Handmade Puppet Dreams Film Series.
Linda Wingerter, director, writer, is a third generation puppet artist performing, filming, and building puppets and kinetic art as The Stringpullers Puppet Company in Ithaca, New York. Working primarily in cardboard puppets, marionettes, and shadow puppetry, she began putting her work on film in 2019. In 2021 she received a Handmade Puppet Dreams Micro-Commission to create the short puppet film Misophonia.
Wingerter says, As puppeteers we are guided by the knowledge stored in our hands. We dance with objects, romance materials, and conspire with gravity. Common and discarded materials are our allies. Play is our sacred space. We make things and movement to invite joy, contemplation and curiosity into our communities. We've come together to share and shepherd this tradition of the tangible through an age of the intangible.
The Better Angels
Michael Cusak, Director
The Better Angels tells the story of a young soldier trying to escape the horrors of war. When he finds an abandoned house, he finds within its walls the stories of what might have been.
Michael Cusack was born in Manchester in the UK and moved to Adelaide South Australia when he was 11 years old.
His first major award was an Australian Film Institute Award in 1985 for the short film Waltzing Matilda.
In collaboration with his Producer, Richard Chataway, he was responsible for setting up the animation department at the South Australian Film Corporation. Since then Michael has forged a flourishing career as director of both high end television commercials and a growing number of award winning short films.
Michael has received the prestigious Master’s Chair Award from the Adelaide Advertising and Design Club a record six times and, together with his producer Richard Chataway, received the President’s Award from The Adelaide Art Directors for outstanding achievements in TV/Cinema.
Uli Meyer, Director
Discarded shows how a character designer struggles with the design of a cartoon cat, only to end up on a short trip through the looking glass.
Film is such a wonderful language. It is much harder for me to express myself in words.
Stuart Hancock, Original Score
The Eye Begins With The Hand
Yehuda Sharim, Director
El Ojo Comienza En La Mano is a tribute to campesino histories in rural CA through the artwork of an artist largely absent from critical conversations on Chicanx art, Ruben A. Sanchez, as well as an unsentimental reckoning with the fate of many cultural workers that struggle between paying rent and/or creative endeavors.
Yehuda Sharim is a writer, photographer, filmmaker, and poet. As the son of Persian immigrants to Israel, his work focuses on the relationship between the quotidian and poetic. Sharim’s films have appeared in film festivals, artistic venues, and universities across the world. Oscillating between fiction and documentary filmmaking, his work offers an intimate portrayal of those who refuse to surrender amidst daily devastation and culminating strife, offering a vision for equality and a renewed solidarity in a divisive world. He currently serves as an Assistant Professor in the Program of Global Art Studies, University of California, Merced.
Original Score, Federico Llach
Naomi Yoder, Director
Laurie tells of a Muncie, Indiana, woman who uses art as a healing agent to help herself and others.
Naomi Yoder was born and raised in the Brazil, Indiana, and is a Film and Media Production major with a minor in dance at Taylor University. She has a passion for storytelling and sees film as a beautiful, creative visual tool to do just that. She enjoys writing, drawing, and traveling abroad.
Flow: A film about painting
Alan McGowan, Director
Flow is an exploration of paint, space and sound combining physical performance, life painting, music and film.
Artist Alan McGowan, model Topaz Pauls and musicians Tim Vincent Smith and Matt Wright collaborate to produce a changing, shifting, developing scene recorded in paint. In this immersive improvisation what emerges is unique, unpredictable; a result of the ephemeral leaving its trace.
Alan McGowan is a prize winning figurative artist whose work has featured in the Scottish Portrait Awards, SKY Portrait Artist, BP Portrait Awards, the Threadneedle Figurative Art Prize and many other exhibitions of contemporary figure painting.
First performed and recorded at the 2022 Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
Original Score, Matthew Wright, Tim Vincent Smith
Barbara Rachko: True Grit
Jennifer Alexis Cox, Director
True Grit is an uplifting story of an accomplished artist who overcame gender barriers and a deep tragic loss, to forge a path that is uniquely her own.
Jennifer Cox is a filmmaker and cinematographer working as both a documentary DP and Director/DP/Editor on short form content for corporate and non-profit clients. She has shot for numerous award-winning directors and is sought after for her cinematic eye and nimble verité shooting in some of the most challenging environments - both emotionally and physically. In order to continually sharpen her game, Jennifer works as an editor (to better understand story structure which informs her shooting), and on a more practical level, she competes in triathlons (so she can continue to work long days and schlep gear far and wide).
My aim in approaching this film was to continually surprise and delight the viewer. I wanted more than just 'to tell', I wanted to use my background in fiction screenwriting to structure scenes with a question, an answer that isn't expected, and then a twist. Most of all I sought to not let the viewer ever get bored (akin to some kind of criminality in short form)! Enjoy!
The Procession by Hew Locke
Andrew Margetson, Director
We don’t know where they’re going, but we hope it’s to a better future -- Hew Locke
Our television screens are dominated by the ever-increasing displacement of individuals who have been forced to pack up, flee, relocate in fear of prosecution, persecution or ecological threat.
The world is on the move. ‘The Procession by Hew Locke’, from acclaimed contemporary Guyanese-British artist, Hew Locke, brings the viewer face-to-face with 140 individual sculptures, representing a procession of adults, children, and horses. Each figure carries the weight of their historical and cultural past, from global financial and violent colonial control, as evidenced in the embellishments on their clothes and banners, alongside commanding images that capture some of the colonial architecture of Locke’s childhood spent in Guyana. Such historical, financial and colonial roots continue to surround mass movement of populations, and the resulting film is at once a protest, carnival, ritual and flight to safety.
Unveiled as a long continuous shot, the film features Locke’s sculptural installation entitled ‘The Procession’, Tate Britain’s Annual Duveen Hall Commission of 2022. Set within Tate Britain, founded by the sugar magnate Henry Tate, the film contextualizes its environment and the building’s links to the colonial past, as the audience enters through its grand arches into a world that seeks to reinforce the joint importance of marching forwards as well as demanding an ongoing deeper reflection on the past.
Paloma Libre - Learning to Make My Mark with Master Artist Hyacinthe Baron
Sandy Paloma Philbin, Director
Paloma Libre is a drawing journey of Master Artist teaching the student the empowering technique of Making Your Mark.
Sandy Paloma Philbin was born in Mazatlan, Sinaloa, Mexico and raised in Phoenix, Arizona. After earning a Masters Degree in Social Work from Arizona State University, Sandy became a Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of California. Currently residing in San Diego with husband, Matthew, son, Diego, and daughter Luna, Sandy integrates her creative passions and mental health training as she expands her artwork and nurtures her growing family.
Hyacinthe Baron was the first woman to own an art gallery on New York City’s famed Madison Avenue. She is an accomplished 50 year professional artist, painter, draftsman, sculptor, and print maker. Mentored by Marcel Duchamp, Baron is internationally renowned among collectors including Jacqueline Kennedy, Marilyn Monroe, Rock Hudson, Martha Raye, Christie Everett, John Lennon, Jane Russell, and many more.
No Darling - Kim Hoss
Sabrina Gaber, Director
No Darling is about Kim Hoss, an artist. Yet, before she was able to call herself that, she struggled a lot with accepting her work, the way she is creating her art and being respected as a woman in the industry.
This documentary piece portraits Kim's path and visually underlines her development to being a female artist who has found her standpoint in the industry and foremost finally accepts herself.
Sabrina Gaber is a filmmaker based in Munich, Germany. She always has been interested in real stories and bringing them to the audience in a visually compelling way. Her work also include music videos and commercials.
After studying "Audiovisual Media" in Stuttgart, Germany, she worked in the storytelling department of a German TV show and on documentary pieces for a production company in New Zealand before settling in Munich where she is now a freelance filmmaker and producer.
Lost From Sight
Oliver Vandersleyen, Director
Marie Gaillet, a Belgian artist, has been a painter for 70 years, and has been severely handicapped for 13 years by AMD. She is now 93 years old and continues to give painting classes.
Olivier Vandersleyen has been a professor at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Visuels (ENSAV) in La Cambre, Brussels, since 1979. He is a member of the Belgian and European press corps, and as cameraman, has covered events such as the fall of the Wall in Germany, the war in former-Yugoslavia and the conflict in Northern Ireland for the major TV broadcasters. He is a graduate of INSAS (Institut National Supérieur des Arts du Spectacle et des Techniques de Diffusion ) Brussels. He began his career in France, at FR3, as well as at France Inter, France Culture and Sud Radio. He produces and directs documentaries on industrial heritage such as « Greenhouse Effects » , « Mad about Hats » , « Arthur Brancart and the Marbrite » or « Dr Biermans, a True Story » as well as on archeological heritage : « The Tempest Stela » or on art : « Lost from Sight ». The narrative is based on proven facts and documents that attest to them. The images are always a reflection of reality. There are never invented movie sequences that can be misleading. Sources are always cross-checked and information verified. Experts are given the floor with their own voice and express their opinions freely.
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Matege "Pest'' Rogers, Director
As we spread love to other people, we become exponential, eternal, infinite. Love is timeless.
Ugandan director, Matege "Pest" Rogers is the founder and CEO of Grate Make Films, a boutique Ugandan film, and audio production company. Pest has over 10 years of experience creating regional entertainment, commercials, and music videos for East & Central Africa's top performance artists. Infinity is his debut short film.
The Matege Pest Rogers said, "It rained heavily when we shot this film, but where I come from when it rains while the sun is up, it means that somewhere a lioness is giving birth and it is also a sign of blessings."
“The future is ancient” was a statement that caught my ears as I tuned into a radio interview by Nsimbi. I knew I had found my tribe! I have always believed that if humanity was to be reminded of its origins we would all see how connected we are. I was born and raised in a village in Western Uganda, where the sense of community is strong, and my grandparents have always dug through the wisdom of the past to find answers to the questions of the present. As I watch the world become divided by race, religion, and creed I feel the need to create art that will hopefully bring the world together, and teach us about what unites us.
As many struggle with the questions of identity, Nsimbi advocates for unity in our diversity without uniformity. In Africa, we believe in the web of interconnectedness, the circle of life, and everything coming back full circle to where it began. I got together with Nsimbi to create the film Infinity because as a cross-cultural duo they have been advocates for cross-cultural dialogue.
Our film is both a spiritual journey and an entertaining family story told in musical form. My hope is that audiences watching this film will learn about Africa beyond the stereotypes of colonial legacies. We would like to take you to a time that existed before man emigrated to populate the earth!
The values of the people and their spiritual views hold the community together. My People the Bantu call it the spirit of Ubuntu and it is alive in all of us. We only suffer and destroy the planet and each other when we ignore the fact that we all want the same thing! Freedom, Love, Appreciation, and Inspiration.
Jagoda Turlik, Director
Bathed in colors, cheerful and carefree "Childhood", despite having fun, has its end. We "get out" of it in different ways. Its turning point is "Adulthood" which brings its inevitable change. Regardless of the "scenery" in which we live and the "costume" we wear as adults, "Childhood" is part of us and we can always refer to this land of joy. Together.
I am a filmmaker and dance lover.
Following the idea of a Renaissance man ...
I graduated from Musicology at the University of Warsaw, Film Production Organization and TV PWSFiTv in Łódź, Dance Theory of the FCUM in Warsaw, Manhattan Edit Workshops and Cinema Workshops in NYC. I have participated in numerous biennials, courses and training sessions in Poland and abroad (including China) on the art of dance, film and music.
I work in polish film industry.
Screen-dance is my passion and an important point of my professional interests.
Reading the Body: Recovery
Danielle Ofri, Director
A compelling examination of recovery that blends poetry and dance. Dancers create original choreography based on poetry about recovery, set to original music, highlighted with ASL interpretation. This is a co-production of Bellevue Literary Review and The Paige Fraser Foundation.
Bo Sjokvist, Director
Two dancers try to approach previous generations of Swedish women by trying to understand their craft, embroidery. To translate embroidery into dance. What exactly is a cross stitch and can you really walk with a thread? The film follows the two dancers when they dry to develop an embroidery dance performance. Their process is interspersed with interviews with three embroiderers who talk about their love for the craft and the difficulties of making the perfect stitch.
Director Bo Sjökvist, is a documentary film director and journalist who has worked for more than 20 years with documentary in film, radio, and in book form. Among his documentary films are titles such as ”Predikanten” about Målle Lindberg. "Vägen till riksdagen" on the Swedish Democrats' election campaign 2010 and the documentary series "Nordstan en julsaga". In the fall of 2017, it was the theatrical release for the film about Johnny Bode "No Time For Love" which he made together with Bengt Löfgren. With SVT he has developed and produced the documentary series "Mitt psyke och jag" which was broadcasted on SVT year 2015 and 2016. It was nominated for the Stora Journalistpriset award in the category innovator of the year. The format is now used as a framework for other SVT productions. Furthermore, he has developed the format and produced the successful TV show "Arvinge Okänd" for SVT. The format has been exported to several other countries and in 2018 the show was nominated for the Kristallen Awards, the Guldrosen Award the the Stora Journalistpriset award. In the fall off 2021 it was the theatrical release for his latest feature length documentary Waiting for Jan myrdal's death. It was very well received by the audience and the press. He also worked as a documentary film commissioner at Film I väst between 2007 and 2010.
His radio documentaries include ”Mera brännvin" about Eddie Meduza, ”Jan Myrdals sista flytt” and ”kassettbandsdrottningen”. He has written several books, one in collaboration with the cartoonist Pontus Lundkvist ( probably the world's first biographical cartoon cookbook) "The Primadonna from Hisingen" about Lena Junoff "(Kartago Förlag 2014).
Once I passed
Martin Gerigk, Director
Walt Whitman, is one of the most important poets in American literature. His main work, Leaves of Grass, was written over a period of forty years, and it describes human nature, society, and the natural world, both physically and philosophically.
Many have speculated about Whitman's private life, to this day. Whitman never wrote publicly about his personal relationships. In 1860, he published his poem "Once I Passed Through a Populous City", an aphoristic account of a romantic relationship with an unknown woman. In 1925, the original handwritten copy of the poem was discovered, in which Whitman writes, however, not about a woman but about an affair with a man in an anonymous city, which may have been his first physical experience of love. Whitman did not dare to publish the original version of his poem, because of the social prejudices of his time. To this day, only the altered version is printed in most anthologies.
"Once I passed" is dedicated, on the one hand, to the obviously autobiographical context with all its personal drama, and on the other hand to the content of the poem itself, the profoundly quiet, yet powerful story of two lovers.
I came across the original version by chance many years ago. I was touched by the unexpected turn of this love story, but also depressed by the tragic self-censorship. I was cautious about creating a film from the text. I hesitated for many years before working on it. Whitman circles around the inescapable affection of the two lovers. The depth and intensity of their love are not revealed in direct descriptions, but only through the approaching loss of this love. A recurring awareness tears the viewer apart emotionally, and yet, only through this, frees its inner beauty and truth.
During the creation of the individual scenes, my focus was not only on the narrative perspective, but above all on the visual details and the rhythmic alignment of the animations. In this context, it was not easy to write the music for the film. There were several frustrating attempts that were close to the mood but not close enough to the emotional aspects of the poem. It was only after I managed to free my mind from self-imposed expectations that the music emerged, as if by itself, a mixture of tonal and experimental musical sequences for string quartet, interwoven with text spoken by three voices. I deliberately wrote music that is exclusively dedicated to and subordinate to the poem.
Martin Gerigk (*1972) is a composer of contemporary music. His repertoire includes compositions for orchestra and chamber music, as well as several solo concertos. His compositions are performed nationally and internationally including in Korea, Japan, USA, England, Finland, Austria and Switzerland. In this context he works together with renowned international soloists and ensembles.
In addition to his compositional work he is known for his remarkable audiovisual art and experimental films which focus on inherent synesthetic connections of sound and visual perceptions. Besides creating interwoven aural and visual landscapes of music, nature sounds and video sequences one important aspect of his art is the illustration of the hidden poetry of nature phenomena and sciences.
Original Score, Martin Gerigk
Esta Noche, no,...no
Luis Carlos Rodríguez García, Director
Esta noche no, ..no, is an audiovisual experiment by Luis Carlos Rodríguez, produced by Enrique Hurtado, and is based on a poem by Eduardo Fraile Valles, interpreted and choreographed by Cristina Calleja, recited by the poet himself and with music by Juan Carlos Martín.
Esta noche no, ..no, is a collage that is part of a broad experimental audiovisual research project that seeks to explore, from the point of view of artistic-expressive activities, formal, structural, narrative and aesthetic issues.
Luis Carlos Rodríguez García. Avila Spain. I reside in Valladolid, Fine Arts. University of the Basque Country.
Currently a professor at the Faculty of Education, University of Valladolid.
I Have made individual and collective exhibitions of painting, photography, video art, installations and audiovisual performances in:
Alicante, Avila, Barcelona, Bilbao, Girona, Granada, Madrid, Salamanca, Valladolid (Spain).
Paris, Toulouse, Nice, Aquitaine, Aveyron. Decazeville, Renne (France).
Monterrey, Guanajuato, Nuevo León, Chichco and Mexico DF (Mexico).
London, Morecambe, Walthamstow, Cambridge, Folkestone. Bradford, (UK).
New York, Atlanta, Burbank, Venice. Tampa, Asheville. Los Angeles, Las Vegas. Illinois, Ohio. Sacramento. Albuquerque Wisconsin, Oklahoma City, Palm Springs. New Bern, (USA).
Rome, Forlì, Bari, Milan. Lecce. Modena, Naples. Lucca Tuscany. (Italy).
Callcuta, Bengal, Maharashtra. Pune. (India).
Lisbon, Porto, Coimbra and Madeira (Portugal).
Caracas, San Cristobal Maracay, Nueva España. (Venezuela).
Montreal, Toronto and Ontario (Canada).
Buenos Aires, Paraná, (Argentina).
Tokyo, Kyoto (Japan).
Melbourne, Brisbane, (Australia).
Loannina, Athens (Greece).
Warsaw, Bydgoszcz, (Poland).
Spliz and Zagreb (Croatia).
Cusco, Lima (Peru)
Innsbruck, (Austria). Berlin (Germany), Guanzanghou, (China). Sofia (Bulgaria). Timisoara (Romania). Belgrade (Serbia). Moscow (Russia). Rio de Janeiro (Brazil). Cúcuta, (Colombia). Phnom Penh (Cambodia), Lugano (Switzerland), Asuncion, (Paraguay), Lima (Peru) Ghent (Belgium). Santiago de Cuba, (Cuba), ,Khouzstan (Islamic Republic of Iran). Istambul, (Turkey).
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