Recap: Womxn in Film Screening
When I was at USC, I was a research coder for one of Stacy Smith’s studies that looked at gender in film. Smith has produced a lot of research showing the underrepresentation in media of women and minority (soon to be majority in some cases) groups. In addition to coding and taking her class, I took a ton of other classes at USC and hoped that by the time I was the age I am now — over then years later after graduating from USC — things wouldn’t look as grim as they did back then.
Unfortunately, there is still a huge need for diversity both in front of and behind the screen — in mass media and indie media. This is why I was so excited to host Zoe Map for a Womxn in Film Screening last weekend!!!
Zoe, founder of WOMXN TO THE FRONT and teacher of our upcoming Video Production Lab Workshop Series, put together an excellent line up for short films, docs, dance, and music videos for us to screen.
We gathered in our studio in Dumbo, Brooklyn, grabbed a beer and popcorn, and sat on blankets to view the selection. We kicked off the night with introductions of myself, Zoe, and everyone in attendance. I was impressed by the range of creative industry representation we had. It felt comforting to know we are all working to seek or create more representation of women, especially women of color, in film.
We dimmed the lights and got the film, or streaming video rather, rolling.
Here are the Directors and selections we viewed, thanks to Zoe’s keen eye and curation:
Amy Gardner - FUEL
Irshad Manji - Moral Courage Genesis Briggs
Jasmine Lynea - The Mixtape: Stay Black, Baby
Zoe map - DUMB DUMB
If you want to learn more about the directors, keep scrolling for bios below.
Special thanks to Zoe Map for creating such an amazing selection of work! If you are interested in film, check out her upcoming Video Production Lab Series, check out her work at her website, and follow her on Instagram at @zoemap.
AMY GARDNER – FUEL
FUEL by Amy Gardner, a fully female production releases new experimental dance film that explores the complexities of feminism and current social conditions while fusing movement, fashion and Kodak’s 35mm film.
Amy Gardner: “It all began with the desire to merge dance and film. When I say film, I mean 35mm film. Those are really my two favorite things and means of expression. I also wanted to create and direct my own project, as opposed to contribute to someone else’s idea. In terms of structure, I wanted to create an essay, a movement essay, if you will, to reflect upon current social conditions, feminism, and human nature. As the idea grew, the idea to assemble a female crew became another component to the project. What I find interesting is that in the past year feminism and the idea of women supporting women has grown so substantially. When this idea came about, it wasn’t quite as relevant as it is now.”
IRSHAD MANJI - MORAL COURAGE GENESIS BRIGGS
Irshad Manji is an internationally acclaimed educator, author, speaker and founder of the Moral Courage Project. Based in Hawaii, Moral Courage equips people to do the right thing in the face of their fears. In-between books, Irshad spearheaded the Emmy-nominated PBS documentary, Faith Without Fear. She also launched Moral Courage TV, the YouTube channel that features people who are standing up when others want them to sit down. The question sparked by every episode: What do you stand for and what are you doing about it? Moral Courage Genesis Briggs A Biloxi native and activist has been outspoken about wanting to change the state flag. Her protest in a New York City club made national headlines last year, but it also caught the attention of documentary filmmakers.
Genesis Briggs, better known as Genesis Be, made a trip home to Biloxi with a camera crew in tow. The documentary entitled, "Confederate Pride, White Supremacy, and My State Flag" was just released on Moral Courage Project's website.
The opening scene of the documentary shows Genesis Be on stage publicly protesting the confederate flag last year in her now home of New York. She can be seen wearing the flag and hanging a noose around her neck.
JASMINE LYNEA - THE MIXTAPE: STAY BLACK, BABY
Jasmine Lynea is an Independent Film Director, Producer, Photographer and Editor, based in NYC and PHL. Since graduating from Temple University, Jasmine has remained incredibly consistent in developing her craft in media production by directing, producing or editing, music videos, short-films, promos or documentaries.
The Mixtape: Stay Black, Baby by capturing an exhilarating reflection on Black America, This is complex portrait of black youth rising, black art glorified, black voices uncovered, black struggle acknowledged and black empowerment revered. Poetically, each scene elaborates on current political and social issues within the black community issues that must be recognized for change to encourage growth. Musically driven, The Mixtape: Stay Black, Baby! arrives at a very important time in America and is only present to self-reflect and prosper.
ZOE MAP - DUMB DUMB
Zoe is an Italian filmmaker based in Brooklyn, New York. Zoe’s vision captures urban landscapes with a focus on documenting the human experience through the lens of art, music and culture. Zoe amplifies cultural narratives and raises awareness on social justice with recurring themes of diversity and racial equality in American culture.
DUMB DUMB Music Video won “Best Music Video” At Hip Hop Film Festival 2018 NYC and also was officially selected to SXSW 2019.
“From the moment Cipherella presses play on her ghetto blaster stereo, viewers become enthralled by the 90's hip imagery. She and her crew begin marching through a parking lot styled in matching denim outfits. Her opening rhyme, “true story everything I say you type. World of collision, catch my vision, hop my flight” alerts fans of the hip-hop cosmos to reflect in the most rhythmic of ways, shaking us from our mainstream trance and grooving us in a more fulfilling direction.”