downloadable schedule for the festival weekend

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All Together Now: A Celebration of Art, Film & Music to be held at the Annex Gallery in 333 Midland, Highland Park, MI, 48203

April 26 - 28, 2019

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Lineup of short films:


A Dot In Existence (Finland)

This particular piece of work is dedicated to a daily meditation practice of which I mark "a dot" in my calendar when completed. I often feel caught in the past, almost ghost-like, when drowning in thoughts, but during meditation I suddenly wake up to reality and for a brief moment I feel awake from the nightmare of the mind. - 02:30

Directed by Hanna-Mari Ojala

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A Family Recipe that Cannot be Followed Written Down (California)

A first-generation Chinese-American woman mourns her immigrant father by following the traditional family recipe that she learned from him as a little girl. - 02:18

Directed by Elaine Zhang

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Altered States (Detroit)

Dumpstermation: Stop-Motion meets Found Object. Kinetic Visual Storytelling. Intensive Hands-On Animation Workshop Project at Carrington Arts in Sandusky, Ohio. A part of the exhibition, ALTERED STATES. - 00:33

Directed by Gary Schwartz

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American Gods: N/A (Detroit)

American Gods: N/A is a meditation which examines the fallibility of Americana by placing blacks at the forefront of its narrative. Between three acts a mother mourns her fallen son evoking Michaelangelo’s "Pietà", a diva sings the Black National Anthem, Lift Every Voice and Sing, a requiem for America, to an empty church. The third act shows a group of five artists/activist uniformed in all black donning the masks of their philosophical counterparts. Using the American flag to tie these scenes together, American Gods: N/A addresses issues of gun violence against black males, the separation of church and state or the state as church and historical/contemporary black activism. - 02:59

Written and conceived by Tylonn J. Sawyer

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Aquarium (New York)

Aquarium is a choreography of light and motion with a unique perspective on the exquisite beauty that is present in infinite abundance when one focuses attention on the motions of ocean water and its expressive optical qualities. Shot in the heavenly Bonaire, Caribbean -- in breaking waves, tide pools and underwater.

Composer, Max Berlin has created a ‘jazzy’ arrangement of Saint-Saëns’ Aquarium composition (1886, Mouvement VII from the Le carnaval des animaux suite) for bass, piano and percussion that is then followed by an orchestral performance of the original Aquarium composition. - 06:00

Directed by Stephanie Maxwell

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As We Embrace (Taiwan)

This film is based on the title poem of my poetry collection, As We Embrace Thousands are Dying All Over the Earth (2016). Like the poem, the film mulls the problems and possibilities of love in our increasingly ruthless world. Indeed, the world seems bent on going to hell in a basket. And yet, for all my fears of the future, I have come to see a glimmer of hope in the quiet virtues of small things and the selfless acts of ordinary people reaching across the real and imagined lines that divide us. Which is to say, the meaning of this poem has changed for me. But as the poets and philosophers have long pointed out, life is ever unpredictable. Which is why I have filled the film with sequences of random numbers, and why the one or two cherished lines of the poem I do quote are read in so many languages. As if with a mind of its own, my poem has become a mantra. - 04:36

Directed by Amang Hung

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Blows with the Wind (Iran)

After a magical event a scarecrow comes to life. - 06:30

Directed by Hazhir As'adi

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Blue Lights (Detroit)

A funky night on the town goes sideways when Nadir gets pulled over by the police. "Blue Lights" describes the tension as our hero wonders what will happen next. "Are you good cop or bad cop? Will you give me a ticket, arrest me, or will I have to throw down?" - 04:09

Directed by Mario "Khalif" Butterfield

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Capricorn (UK)

Capricorn (Козерог) is a video poem that aims to create a new type of poetic language, integrating spoken word with moving image and not merely echoing or illustrating the spoken word with visuals. - 02:18

Directed by Eta Dahlia

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Children of Hope (Iran)

Immigrant children looking for life ... - 12:00

Directed by Hamid Rasouli

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Context out of

Context (without change) (Detroit)

Art in its inception formulates from ideas. This project addresses the idea that art can be used to express conceptually many aspects of our daily lives. Although that may seem a bit broad and vague, it opens the door to explore some of the more normal aspects of our daily lives as they are, unscripted, as is. We believe that in altering the context of how these norms are interpreted, without changing the actual behavior, provokes thought and new meaning, which now brings the idea into the realm of conceptual art. - 08:32

Directed by Chris Turner and Dave Krieger


Creep (Detroit)

A stormy night, a dark house, strange noises, and a little boy with a very active imagination run wild in this animated short film. - 03:18

Directed by Carl Wilson

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David Philpot (Detroit)

The life and art of David Philpot. - 03:22

Directed by Kresge Arts Detroit

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Declarations (US)

Inspired by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), and the art and writing of feminist painter Saribenne Evesong (1931-2009), Declarations uses art, and the art of movement, to examine empathy as a facilitator of sustainable love, peace, and justice. 04:45

Directed by Adam E. Stone

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Don't Tell Me I'm Beautiful (Missouri)

Filmed in Montenegro, Romania, and the U.S., "Don't Tell Me I'm Beautiful" is a poetry film made for the poem of the same name by American filmmaker and poet Eliot Michl. Michl narrates her poem and appears in various stages of her life throughout the film. - 01:48

Directed by Eliot Michl

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Doubts (Connecticut)

"Don't believe everything you think."

DOUBTS, a poem by Julie Flanders with animation by Phoebe Cavise, is both a light and serious reminder to believe in something better than your uncertainties. Conveyed with love and whimsy this short film is meant to shift and elevate the spirit of the viewer. A seamless marriage of word and image, DOUBTS is a philosophical amuse-bouche designed to please the mind and delight the senses. - 03:14

Directed by October Project

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Dynamite (US)

A short, poetic performance art/dance film that investigates gender and masculinity --more specifically the American black male experience-- through embodied inquiry to find spaces where identity exists between and in opposition to social constructs. This film guides us through narrative incorporating movement, spoken word, and chant, as it uncover truths about race, gender, and success in an ever-changing social landscape. - 06:41

Directed by Leila Jarman

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Flow of Water (Detroit)

The Flow of Water is a 2D animated short film. It is a mixture of animation techniques including cut out, traditional, and digital. It is mixed with live action and told in a surreal style with a non linear narrative. - 06:27

Directed by Carl Wilson

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From the Ashes (Flint)

DUMPSTERMATION: Stop-motion Meets Found Object. "Animation is the illusion of spontaneity". Students were introduced to animation from the perspective of the artist. As artists, they find their own voice through the discipline of animation as a medium for self-expression. - 00:34

Directed by Gary Schwartz

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Greatness (US)

A music video addressing domestic violence. - 03:38

Directed by Carmen Diaz

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Growing Old on the Street: Artistic Interpretations of a Series of Photographs by Tim Tonachella (Detroit)

Growing Old on the Street is a film featuring artistic interpretations by several artists of a series of photographs by legally-blind Plymouth, Michigan photographer,
Tim Tonachella, of life and growing old on the streets of Detroit. The art exhibit of photographs and artistic interpretations in several forms of media - along with the film - have been shown at two separate venues in southeast Michigan. - 12:49

Directed by Jim Aho

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Harmonic Interventions Music Video (California)

In the vast and vibrant city of Los Angeles, a solitary violinist embarks on an intrinsic journey of exploration to uncover the invisible connections within the urban landscape and among the unique people who make up the city. The harmonic intervention the violinist conjures forth serves to remind us of the beauty which exists all around us in our daily lives. - 5:45

Directed by Emer Kinsella

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Himself (East Lansing)

Himself is a cinepoem featuring the poem 'Himself' by Thomas Lynch. The video uses different styles of animation and motion graphics to portray sections of the poem. The artwork and voice-over were produced in collaboration with various artists from the Michigan State University Residential College in the Arts and Humanities. Artists worked across different mediums – sometimes in new mediums altogether. Steve Baibak narrates Lynch’s poem. Cindy Hunter-Morgan provides her photography of the Irish countryside (and the actual house of the man who inspired the poem). Riley Bartelotti uses two watercolor paintings to give us a glimpse of the aging farmhouse and life within it. Marcus Fields uses digital illustration and animation to achieve a cut-paper aesthetic featuring Irish farmland for the final lines of the poem. This cinepoem was made for a collaboration between the RCAH Center for Poetry at MSU and the MSU Film Studies Program. - 03:31

Directed by Marcus Fields

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Home (Ireland)

Shot over 6000km between Ireland and USA, over 4 airports, and across two continents, 'Home,' a poetry film featuring work by Erin Fornoff (featured) contrasts the pull and push of a life split between two countries, and the long slog to connect them. - 02:16

Directed by Erin Fornoff

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If’n (Detroit)

Created by Peter B Gahan while a student at the College For Creative Studies in Detroit. Using a color TV, a VHS copy of a TV show and a Super-8mm sound camera on a tripod. 'If'n' went on to win Second Place at the 1986 Ann Arbor Eight Millimeter Film Festival. - 03:30

Directed by Peter Gahan


JamieJimJames (Australia)

A short music documentary exploring James Wiechman's musical journey after finally embracing his passion of becoming a singer/songwriter at the age of sixty. "JamieJimJames" takes you behind his process to find out why he makes his music, highlighting the collaboration he shares with his partner Tracey-Ann Palmer, producer Michael McGlynn and audio engineer Daniel Romeo. - 14:00

Directed by Tin Pang

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Just Visiting (Washington)

After a trip to the big city, a mysterious traveler and his faithful canine catch a ride home that’s out of this world. - 01:38

Directed by Charlie Kothe

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La Vita Solitaria (Italy)

"La Vita Solitaria" is a poem written by Giacomo Leopardi. The poem alternates between moments of quiet and peace and moments of anxiety and pain. The video try to represent this contrast of emotions. - 00:38

Directed by Ugo D'Eramo

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Limbo (Detroit)

Steffanie Christi'an's debut video "LIMBO" (Directed by: Karl Kingson - THEiDEACOMPANY) to support her newly released LP It's Complicated. - 03:43

Directed by Karl Kingson

Visit website Purchase deluxeversion of the album


Locomotion (Armenia)

Students at the Tumo Center for Creative Technologies created an animated film expressing the power & movement of locomotion in this animation workshop. An intensive hands-on kinetic visual storytelling animation workshop project. -

Directed by Gary Schwartz

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Manicotti (North Carolina)

The strange tale of an underground typist whose work makes the glitterati go gaga. Based on a poem of the same name by Marc Zegans, from "The Typewriter Underground." - 05:25

Directed by Ellen Hemphill

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Many Thousands Gone (New York)

Filmed on location in Salvador, Brazil (the last city in the Western Hemisphere to outlaw slavery) and Harlem, New York ( an international stronghold of the African Diaspora), Many Thousands Gone draws parallels between a summer afternoon on the streets of the two cities.
A silent version of the film was given to jazz multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee to use an interpretive score. The final film is the combination of the images and McPhee’s real time “sight reading” of the score. - 07:39

Directed by Ephraim Asili

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Mishmosh (Armenia)

Armenia meets Sesame Street. Students at the Tumo Center for Creative Technologies - Gyumri & Yerevan, Armenia created an Animated Exquisite Corpse Music Video with the 39 letters of the Armenia Alphabet under the direction of Gary Schwartz. - 02:52

Directed by Gary Schwartz

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Never Again (Detroit)

This film, “Never Again” was produced by Jim Aho largely for social media as a reminder and a warning of the consequences of the growing intolerance, racism and antisemitism that marks the current U.S. administration and its millions of supporters. The film is a call to action and a message to those who would deny history - willingly or out of ignorance – and be silent witnesses or active contributors to a new Holocaust. - 04:47

Directed by Jim Aho

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Newzif (Iran)

A young man goes up a tall building. Exhausted and breathless, he reaches the rooftop. On the edge of the roof, he starts a game which has no end. - 06:20

Directed by Mohamad Esmaeeli


PHAT Girl (Detroit)

In 2013 One Single Rose was approached to pen a piece for a plus size debutante ball which brought the spoken word piece PHAT Girl to life. Since that time, young and well-seasoned beauties have requested that the piece be performed piece at their events. Knowing that most women deal with low self-esteem, PHAT Girl is testament to becoming comfortable in our skin, loving who we are flaws and all. PHAT Girl spreads the word that it's past time for us to get comfortable in our skin. It's time for us to embrace all of our flaws. It's time to own the fact that we are all fabulous--big, short, small, tall, dark, light--whatever. We must tell society to mind their own business because we are P.H.A.T. Girls--Pretty, Hot AND Tempting.

The next time you feel inadequate or if your self-esteem needs a boost, remember this haiku:

We are all P.H.A.T. Girls--
pretty, hot and so tempting.
Own it my dawlings!


Directed by Rosemarie Wilson

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Plasticnic (Canada)

Plasticnic” is an animated short poem that humorously depicts how people seek out and enjoy nature while simultaneously (and obliviously) destroying it. The piece wryly depicts the extent and impact of the accumulation of plastic in the environment from simple activities as picnics as people ceaselessly continue to purchase, use and discard single-use plastics. - 01:16

Directed by Fiona Tinwei Lam

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Playing with Dolls (Detroit)

When the dolls are in charge... Paper cut-out silhouette stop-motion animation. - 01:04

Directed by Gary Schwartz

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Semechki (UK)

Semechki (Семечки) is a series of experimental translations of Eta Dahlia’s minimalist Russian poems into gestural drawings by Iris Colomb. - 01:05

Directed by Eta Dahlia

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Shiver (Australia)

Shiver is a Poetry Film presented from the perspective of a woman reflecting on her triumph over childhood domestic violence.

Based on a true story, this honest and powerful poem is brought to life using video, animation and an electronic soundtrack to create a dark but hopeful dream like image of beauty that is segmented but still whole.

The viewer is taken on a journey that reveals an ever increasing strength of spirit to turn the tables on her abuser, “I am not cold and I shiver not for you, I tremble for I am the thunder that troubles you”. - 02:10

Directed by Mark Niehus

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The Choice (Detroit)

"The Choice" is a powerful, thought-provoking short film that looks at abortion, a procedure that one in four women will have at least once over a lifetime. In this dramatic work of fiction, women speak collectively about their circumstances, their abortions, and the aftermath. The surprising array of emotions—ranging from regret to liberation—makes possible a new conversation about a procedure now mired in politics, shame and stigma. Watch "The Choice," and you'll never think about abortion the same way again. - 07:13

Directed by Desiree Cooper

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The Names of Trees (Texas)

Images of decay and regeneration photographed using a video camera whose sensor has been modified for infrared photography create a post apocalyptic, strangely beautiful, but disconnected world. A series of largely deserted rural and urban landscapes concretizes the bittersweet memories of a failed relationship that haunts the narrator in Pamela Falkenberg and Jack Cochran’s film poem of Lucy English’s "The Names of Trees," for her Book of Hours project, - 04:28

Directed by Jack Cochran and Pamela Falkenberg

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The Olive Witch Poems (Bangladesh, US)

3 poems read by the Bangladeshi-American author Abeer Hoque. - 04:30

Directed by Josh Steinbauer

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The Opened Field (UK)

This poem and film is about finding your identity, rituals and how adults can suppress children’s feelings/creativity and thoughts. It’s about keeping your purity and connecting to nature, but learning all this in a harsh dark way. - 04:15

Directed by Helmie Stil

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Transmission (Detroit)

Outer space communication using the human body as a radio antenna. - 02:18

Directed by Lis Chere Thomas and Erin Garber-Pearson

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West Side Drive (Detroit)

West Side Drive is a music video comprising the song West Side Drive by Howard Glazer, and a montage of various Detroit blues musicians - past and present. The introduction to the song is by Detroit Blues artist Chris Canas. The music video is the last segment of the feature length documentary Paradise Boogie. - 03:33

Directed by Lisa Hagopian and ErIc Harabadian

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Without Distortion (Australia)

Without distortion is a poetry film about striving for an authentic life. How do we reconcile the reality of not achieving this high ideal and how do we keep our integrity intact along the way?

When faced with the fear of not surviving the night, the protagonist strives to communicate his final thoughts with his partner, without distortion. Forces surrounding him however are preventing him from reaching her so he must leave a message on her answering machine. - 04:30

Directed by Mark Niehus

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