Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries Film and Video Festival

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Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989

As part of the much lauded survey show currently on at the Art Gallery of Ontario, V/Tape has revisited two two local initiatives from the 1980’s to create a new show WHEN THE WORK WAS NEW: Toronto New Work Shows 1984 and 1986. My short video Absence, 1986 is included in this exhibition and will be screened on Friday March 11, 2017 at  9pm For more information click here.

The Messenger Documentary

Creating The Messenger Documentary was by far one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of my lifetime.  The project took several years to complete. We filmed on three continents, but my journey as a filmmaker began with a simple realization that occurred very close to home.

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My family has a humble cottage about three hours north east of Toronto, and I have spent time here each year since I was born. When we were growing up barn swallows swooped over the water, cedar wax-wings foraged in the choke cherry tree, grosbeaks visited the bird feeder, and I fell asleep to the call of the whip-poor-will. Note the past tense.

 

If it weren’t for the scribbles my mom penciled in our field guide every year, we would have no evidence these birds ever lived in our corner of the world. For my part, as I grew up my life became busier and I rationalized their disappearance as my own problem – I was somehow missing them. Only recently I realized what I was experiencing was part of a much bigger problem. My fate is that I am a filmmaker. And so this journey began.

For thousands of years we humans have looked to birds to foretell the future.

Changes in the flights or songs of birds can signal the coming of storms, the change of season, or simply the dawn of a new day. Today songbird sare disappearing at an alarming rate, which points to changes in our world.

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Birds have something to tell us, and I wanted to amplify their message. The Messenger takes viewers on a high stakes global journey, yet how do you unravel the mystery behind these mass declines without overwhelming people and making them feel helpless? How do you distill complex science into a story that is accessible and impactful?

To achieve this we share the music, the poetry, the beauty and the wonder, and we connect with how amazing these creatures are. We explore our complex human relationship to the natural world. We look at how humans rely on birds and the work that they do, and how this links their fate to our own. The result is a deeply nuanced film. A film that will make you laugh and cry. A film that may change you.

To learn more about the filmmaking journey please read the directors blogpost.

More about the film here and here.

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With Gratitude – The Messenger Documentary

Winning ten awards, three nominations and two special mentions, 2016 was a good year for The Messenger documentary. We hope that the film will continue to inspire and inform in the years ahead.

#ARTCOP21 A Different Tomorrow

In conjunction with Ikono TV ART SPEAKS OUT, I was invited to write a blogpost for a website I very much admire; ARTISTS AND CLIMATE CHANGE.

There is more than one way to look at the world, and scientists, like artists begin with questions, and both practices push the boundaries of knowledge and perception…

Read the post here.

December 5, 2015 at 6PM (CET) “Art Speaks Out” 24h Digital Event for the Environment

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ART SPEAKS OUT

I’m thrilled to have two short works Bear and Drowning London included in ikonoTV’s official ArtCop21 event ART SPEAKS OUT, an on-air exhibition of international video works that reflect upon urgent global issues such as ecological devastation and climate change.

On the occasion of the UN Climate Conference COP21 in Paris, ikonoTV broadcasts its 24-hour special program Art Speaks Out worldwide, an on-air exhibition of international video works about environmental issues. The global event is part of ArtCop21, the official cultural program of the UN Climate Conference in Paris.

“ikonoTV is pleased to announce the participation of prominent international artists including Olafur Eliasson, AK Dolven, Janet Laurence, Su Rynard, Antti Laitinen, Ursula Biemann, Isabelle Hayeur and many more.”

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http://www.artcop21.com/events/art-speaks-out/