June 9, 2013 § Leave a Comment
The first annual “Women and Fashion Film Fest,” was founded by Jeanine Jeo-Hi Kim, and brings together the fashion and film industries in order to educate, inspire and examine pressing issues. The mission statement, as per Ms. Kim, “Our Film Fest will spotlight talent, create a forum of women’s issues, as well as, support the creative development of women and students. We will distinguish ourselves through content, compelling panels, and the participation of industry leaders.”
Day 1 was incredible.
In the documentary, “Girl Model,” the viewer follows Nadya Vall, a young, country girl living in Novokuznetsk, Siberia as she pursues a modeling contract with a Japanese agency that will allow her to travel to Tokyo and earn $8,000 USD. When she and her colleague arrive unchaperoned, they face language barriers, uncertainty of paid work, weight issues and homesickness.
As many turn to what appears to be the fun, glamorous, financially lucrative, “living the dream,” creative world of fashion, in order to escape from tough economic conditions, the harsh reality still remains that careers in the industry are difficult to break into, are usually begun when girls are just that, ‘girls’ and are still emotionally and physically immature. Also, it usually takes a major investment of your own money to get comp cards and a portfolio together, and can ultimately lead to many dangerous outcomes, such as, eating disorders, drug addiction, kidnappings, sexual harassment, and prostitution.
Luckily, documentaries and discussions can shed light on these human rights issues.
Some of the opinions and statements from the first day of screenings and panel discussions from fashion veterans:
“The Industry remains “The Wild West” and needs laws on the books to help sort through these disconcerting issues. Through legislation and collective conversation, change can occur.”
“Change starts at home through education, preparation and parenting.”
“The industry needs regulation.”
“It is society’s fault. Why do these models have to start at such a young age?”
“The industry needs to be unionized.”
“It is a human rights issue.”
“We are all accountable for our behavior.”
“The careers should be started at 18 years old, the legal working age.”
“Don’t take a job, unless you know how much you are going to make.”
This was a fast response to the problem at hand. As per an article on June 12, 2013,
In the short film, “Blank Canvas,” a woman who has lost all of her hair due to an advanced stage of cancer, demonstrates how she handles the social stigma attached to being bald by having creative Henna designs drawn on to her scalp.
Meanwhile, the short film, “34″ x 25″ x 36″,” philosophized, ”Do we worship the perfect woman?” “Do people have to believe in something?” “What is our salvation as a society?” “Is ‘Barney’s’ the church for today? (insinuating that more people flock to the stores, than to church).
HBO documentary, “About Face: Supermodels, Then and Now” by Timothy Greenfield-Sanders, starts off with the “Velvet Underground” and “Nico” song, “Mirror; I’ll be your mirror, reflect what you are.”
and gets up close and personal with the Supermodels from back in the day; Carmen Dell’Orefice, Isabella Rossellini, Christie Brinkley, Christy Turlington, Jerry Hall, Carol Alt, Paulina Porizkova, Pat Cleveland, Beverly Johnson, Eileen Ford, and Brooke Shields.
Main points from the film: “It is a woman’s business.” “It’s about character and beauty.” ”Modelling allowed me to not have to rely on my father or husband for money.” “It offered me a way to express myself in a way that can not be expressed in words.” “It was an attitude.” “It was living in a bubble.” “I was told to act like I was the most beautiful thing.” “I watched a lot of friends get lost in the wave and pass away from drugs or disease.” “We were clothes hangers.” “Misogyny.” “Confidence.” “Innocent.” “Naivety.” “Discrimination. Color barriers.” “Glad I didn’t die in the process.” “Why shouldn’t we be allowed to age?” Woman are everything; mothers, wives, and business women.” “When I looked like that, I should have walked around naked all the time.” “Modeling: demonstrates insecurity. I’m more beautiful now that I am not a model.” “We all have to go sometime, I want to go with my high heels on.”
Topics discussed in the panel: “Diversity,” “Retouching Photos,” “Strong sense of self” “Strides in diversity,” “Beauty the way you are.” “The more women writers that enter the industry, the better.” “Media should promote healthy eating and living.” “Be true to yourself.” “Aging. Celebrate women as they advance.” “Be Humble.” “Be honest with yourself.” “Spontaneous.” “Fearlessness,” and a “Sense of Humor.”
And wrapping up Day 1: “Ralph Rucci: A Designer and his House,” by David Boatman displays the hard work involved in creating and displaying a collection.
Article by Sharon Abella
Photo of Sharon Abella taken by Roy Anthony Morrison
May 27, 2013 § Leave a Comment
“BLUE IS THE WARMEST COLOR”/“LA VIE D’ADELE”
Directed by Abdellatif Kechiche, starring Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux
“INSIDE LLEWYN DAVIS “
Directed by Joel and Ethan Coen
Amat Escalante, Director of “HELI”
SOSHITE CHICHI NI NARU-”LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON”
Directed by Kore-Eda Hirokazu
Jia Zhangke for ”TIAN ZHU DING”-” A TOUCH OF SIN”
Berenice Bejo in LE PASSE-”THE PAST”
Directed by Asghar Farhadi /”A Separation”
Bruce Dern in “NEBRASKA”
Directed by Alexander Payne
PALME D’OR - SAFE : Directed by Moon Byoung-gon
HVALFJORDUR- WHALE VALLEY/LE FJORD DES BALEINES)
Directed by Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson
37°4 S, Directed by Adriano Valerio
UN CERTAIN REGARD
L’IMAGE MANQUANTE - THE MISSING PICTURE
Directed by Rithy Panh
OMAR- Directed by Hany Abu-Assad
Alain Guiraudie pour son film L’INCONNU DU LAC
A CERTAIN TALENT PRIZE
For the whole cast of LA JAULA DE ORO by Diego Quemada-Diez
FRUITVALE STATION: Directed by Ryan Coogler
ILO ILO: Directed by Anthony Chen
QUINZAINE DES REALISATEURS
NEEDLE: Directed by Anahita Ghazvinizadeh
EN ATTENDANT LE DÉGEL: Directed by Sarah Hirtt
TROISIÈME PRIX –
IN ACVARIU- IN THE FISHBOWL: Directed by Tudor Cristian Jurgiu
PANDY -PANDAS Directed by Matúš Vizar
May 14, 2013 § Leave a Comment
‘He who hesitates fails and regrets it the next day,’ exclaims the auctioneer with a thick British accent at the ’11th Hour Auction’ held at ‘Christie’s’ 20 Rock location in NYC on Monday night.
Over 30 of today’s most important living contemporary artists including: BANKSY, PETER BEARD, MARK GROTJAHN, RICHARD PRINCE, BHARTI KHER, RAYMOND PETTIBON, STERLING RUBY, ROBERT LONGO, JULIAN SCHNABEL, AND TAKASHI MURAKAMI donated their works for charity. The proceeds went to “The Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation,” which is dedicated to protecting Earth’s last wild places and fostering a harmonious relationship between humanity and the natural world. http://www.leonardodicaprio.org
Leo stated, “My Foundation has worked on environmental issues since 1998, and despite the great efforts by organizations all over the world, our planet is in trouble. The modern world is placing enormous pressure on the very natural systems that sustain us; we are destroying our forests, polluting the air and water, overfishing our oceans and facing overwhelming extinction rates of plants and animals. Consequently less than 2% of our Oceans and 12% of our forests and wildlands are protected. Nature is abundant and it is resilient, but we have to take action now to protect our planet before it is too late. Given that less that 2% of philanthropic giving goes to environmental conservation projects, we are grateful that ‘Christie’s’ and the participating artists are providing this incredible opportunity.”
Many good times and laughs were had by well respected names in the art and film world including, Tobey Maguire, Salma Hayek, Bradley Cooper, Mark Ruffalo, Larry Gagosian, and Tony Shafrazi. Highlights from the evening included, the prices of four works were doubled by the benefactor, the auctioneer mistook Leo for bidding $600,000 on Joe Bradley’s ‘Muggles’, when in reality he was waving to a friend, however, Mr. DiCaprio did purchase the Takashi Murakami for $700,000, and Larry Gagosian’s $5 million bid on the Mark Grotjahn ‘Bird of Paradise’ oil on cardboard was out shined with a final selling price of $6.2 million.
Lot 1: Banksy, PROTECT FROM ALL ELEMENTS: $300,000
Lot 2: Sherrie Levine: JAVELINA: $180,000
Lot 3: Sterling Ruby: SP231: $1,700,000
Lot 4: Robert Longo, LEO: $1,500,000
Lot 5: George Condo: FRANKENSTORM: $800,000
Lot 6: Andreas Gursky: OCEAN V: $600,000
Lot 7: Julian Schnabel, UNTITLED: $350,000
Lot 8: Raymond Pettibon: THE LOWER HALF: $1,500,000
Lot 9: Mark Grotjahn: BIRD OF PARADISE: $6,200,000
Lot 10: Neo Rauch: BEERENPFLUCKER 1: $ 800,000
Lot 11: Carol Bove: UNTITLED: $300,000
Lot 12: Joe Bradley: MUGGLES: $650,000
Lot 13: Zeng Fanzhi: THE TIGER: $4,800,000
Lot 14: Rudolf Stingel: UNTITLED: $950,000
Lot 15: Bharti Kher: THE SKIN SPEAKS A LANGUAGE NOT ITS OWN: $1,700,000
Lot 16: Urs Fischer: GOOD PROBLEM: $1,050,000
Lot 17: Anis Kapoor: UNTITLED: $700,000
Lot 18: Takashi Murakami, MONONOKE: $700,000
Lot 19: Walton Ford: ANTHROPONOSIS: $800,000
Lot 20: Richard Prince: SILHOUETTE COWBOY: $1,200,000
Lot 21: Adam McEwen: UNTITLED: $300,000
Lot 22: John Currin, BRINDA: $150,000
Lot 23: Ugo Rondinone: ERSTERAPRILZWEITAUSENDUNDDREIZEHN: $270,000
Lot 24: Elizabeth Peyton: LEONARDO: $1,000,000
Lot 25: Sergej Jensen: UNTITLED: $250,000
Lot 26: Rob Pruitt: 6:20pm LATE SUMMER: $300,000
Lot 27: Cecily Brown: UNTITLED: $420,000
Lot 28: Mark Ryden: QUEEN BEE: $680,000
Lot 29: Dan Colen: CRUCIFY ME: $680,000
Lot 30: Edward Ruscha: BLISS BUCKET: $350,000
Lot 31: Peter Beard: THE EDGE OF THE WORLD: $260,000
Lot 32: Kai Althoff: UNTITLED: $150,000
Lot 33: Cady Noland: UNTITLED: $150,000
Article by Sharon Abella
May 11, 2013 § Leave a Comment
May 7, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Downtown Community Television Center (DCTV)
Breaks Ground On New Theater Located at 87 Lafayette Street
(Between Walker and White)
“The NEW DCTV CINEMA will be a state-of-the-art fully interactive digital cinema, and the first “ALL DOCUMENTARY/ALL THE TIME” Academy Award eligible cinema in New York City!”
Earlier today, May 7, 2013 , New York City officials Kate Levin, Scott Stringer, Margaret Chin and Gale Brewer were joined by acclaimed filmmakers Michael Moore (Bowling For Columbine); Matthew O’Neill (China’s Unnatural Disaster, Redemption), and Morgan Spurlock (Super Size Me) at a ceremony to mark the groundbreaking of Downtown Community Television Center’s new documentary-only theater. The groundbreaking marks a significant milestone for Downtown Community Television (DCTV), a cultural fixture in Lower Manhattan since 1972 founded by the award-winning filmmaking team Jon Alpert & Keiko Tsuno.
The first of its kind in the United States, the 73 seat, fully-interactive, digital cinema will be the state-of-the-art venue specifically for documentaries in New York City, and will provide theatrical runs to non-fiction filmmakers for Academy Award qualification.
“The cinema will be built on the first floor of one of the most beautiful buildings in New York City, the 1896 firehouse that houses DCTV. The cinema will feature world-class documentaries made by prestigious filmmakers from around the globe. The cinema is expected to attract 20,000 attendees in its first year and millions more online. It will be the premier presentation venue for documentary filmmakers and an important component of the New York City Arts community. This documentary-focused Cinema will be unique with top-of-the line digital 4K projection systems, and the capability to both broadcast live events and, at the same time, invite participants to the conversations via the internet from anywhere in the world.”
“Yearly, DCTV serves over 13,000 New York City media artists, disadvantaged youth, and residents each year. Our documentaries have earned two Academy Award nominations, 15 Emmy Awards, and are viewed by millions around the world. DCTV’s PRO-TV is the most honored youth media arts program in the country.”
“The cinema, expected to open in early 2015, will mean a significant expansion of DCTV’s public services to include theatrical distribution along with its already highly attended workshops, screenings, master classes and access to affordable equipment and studio rentals, making DCTV a central hub for documentary filmmakers.”
“Founded in 1972 by husband and wife filmmakers Jon Alpert and Keiko Tsuno, DCTV has grown into one of the leading documentary film education and production centers in the country, providing resources for thousands of filmmakers and students, including equipment and facility rentals, screenings, master classes, post-production services and educational programs.
DCTV is a unique space where community screenings, master classes, youth programs and affordable production resources all occur side by side in the firehouse with the award-winning documentary work. DCTV’s film and television work has been recognized with 15 National Emmy Awards, three duPont-Columbia Awards, and two Academy Award Nominations, a Peabody Award, 6 New York Emmy Awards and many other accolades at film festivals and competitions around the world.”
“New York City is the worldwide capital for documentary filmmaking. We have more documentarians per square inch than any place on the globe. For people who love docs, this is their home,” said DCTV co-founder Jon Alpert. “This theater is a place that celebrates their work.”
“Innovative cultural institutions like DCTV are an enormous part of what makes New York City a great place to live, work and visit,” said Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. “This new space will be another gem on our landscape of places where creative people can thrive and contribute to New York City’s unique cultural landscape.”
“At a time when documentary film-making is flourishing as never before, I am pleased to salute the new documentary-only theater that DCTV is opening here in New York City,” said Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer. “This theater, which will be the first of its kind in the United States, offers an exciting new venue for an art form that has increasingly come to play a major role—not only in the world of film, but in the discussion and exploration of public issues that affect millions of people around the world. I was proud to offer support to this worthy project and I know it will provide an important forum in our City for years to come.”
“For over 40 years, DCTV has helped New Yorkers shape and share their stories through an unwavering commitment to documentary film making,” said Cultural Affairs Commissioner Kate D. Levin. “The City is thrilled to join the public-private partnership that will transform space in this extraordinary landmark into a state-of-the-art cinema to serve professional filmmakers, talented students and countless audiences from across the five boroughs and beyond.”
“New York City is one of the world’s greatest hubs of culture and entertainment, and today’s groundbreaking is the latest example of how the City is investing in projects that promote the arts while spurring economic growth,” said NYC Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn. “The Downtown Community Television Cinema will be a great attraction for hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers and countless visitors. I congratulate all those involved in this project and I will continue to support projects that promote the arts along with my colleagues in the City Council.”
The theater, designed by Lee H. Skolnick Architecture + Design Partnership will be built on the ground floor of the beautiful 1896 firehouse that DCTV has called home since 1979 and will boast a state-of-the-art 3D and 4K Digital Cinema projection system, and the ability to share live events with millions of people around the world via the Internet. It is expected to open in early 2015.
Supporters of the cinemas included: Lower Manhattan Development Corporation—funded through Community Development Block Grants from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development; Office of the Mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg; Office of the Speaker of the New York City Council, Christine Quinn; The New York City Council; Office of New York City Council Member Margaret Chin, Office of the Manhattan Borough President, Scott Stringer; The Rockefeller Foundation Cultural Innovation Fund; The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council; The Samuel Rubin Foundation; New York State Assembly Member Deborah Glick; The New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State legislature, Hyde & Watson Foundation, and SONY.
The organization also announced the formation of their first Advisory Council, which will be made up of some of the brightest and most passionate members of the New York City filmmaking community.
In addition to aforementioned filmmakers Garbus (The Farm: Angola U.S.A.), Gibney (Taxi to the Dark Side), Moore (Bowling for Columbine), O’Neill, and Spurlock, the council will include: actors Brooke Adams and James Gandolfini, Emmy-nominated filmmaker Daniel J. Chalfen, producer Abigail Disney (Queen of Versailles, Pray the Devil Back to Hell), Emmy-winner, Ellen Goosenberg (Alive Day Memories & Wartorn: 1861-2010), Oscar-winning filmmaker Barbara Kopple (Harlan County U.S.A. & American Dream), Cáitrín McKiernan (Bringing King to China), HBO Documentary Film president Sheila Nevins, filmmaker Alexandra Pelosi (Journey’s With George), Academy Award nominee Sam Pollard (4 Little Girls), and Oscar-winners Alan and Susan Raymond (I Am A Promise: The Children of Stanton Elementary School).
Technologically Advanced Theater
In keeping with DCTV’s mission to democratize access to digital film technology, the DCTV Cinema will create an affordable, high-end screening venue where independent filmmakers can exhibit their work to the public in 3D and 4K – the highest resolution available.
By focusing exclusively on documentaries, the DCTV Cinema will dramatically expand the total number of showings of nonfiction films in New York City. The cinema equipment and space will be fully DCI compliant and fulfill all rules to be eligible for official Academy Award qualifying runs. The DCTV Cinema will “open the door” for independent documentary filmmakers to qualify their films for an Academy Award nomination, giving them the best chance to bring their work to the widest possible audience.
Furthermore, the interactivity of the theater will allow anyone in the world to participate in the discussions that take place in the screening room. “We’re trying to cast a very wide net,” said Alpert. “This is a place where the tech measures up to the quality of the work. There aren’t as many fine theatrical settings as there should be for documentaries and this is one attempt to rectify that.”
Joining the above-mentioned filmmakers and other guests at the ceremony were: Kate Levin, Commissioner of NYC Department of Cultural Affairs; Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer; New York City Council Member Margaret Chin; Cora Weiss, President, Samuel Rubin Foundation, and Alec Shapiro, President of SONY Braodcast.
Reflecting on the all-star doc lineup of support for the theater, Alpert remarked that “The entire doc community has put their shoulder behind this project,” adding that since documentary directors are often a solitary bunch, “there isn’t often an opportunity for us all to work collectively.”
May 5, 2013 § Leave a Comment
Different era, same problems. This doc and winner for Best Editing at Tribeca Film Festival 2013, sheds light on the African American liberation organization “MOVE” created by John Africa in the late 1970′s. The founder reminded everyone that “Move is not a cult. It is an organization.” They preached peace, yet practiced the opposite. The followers were taught that “the system” was corrupt, and not to use technology, yet they had cars and telephones. While citizens of Philadelphia and neighbors grew tired, they began to complain about the groups living habits, harassment, and child neglect. Finally, the police went to extremes to try to resolve the conflicting lifestyles, and the story is told through the court hearings, incredible video footage, and one of two survivor’s, Michael Moses Ward’s, deposition.
Winner Best Editing, Nels Bangerter, at Tribeca Film Festival 2013!