Experimental Film Virginia

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Experimental Film Virginia

Renata Sheppard Created by Renata Sheppard

The future of arts sustainability centers around cross-disciplinary approach to arts programming that weaves the arts with business, tourism, economy, location, and people, making the arts and artists an integral part of town planning, development, and community. Experimental Film Virginia was seeded through a 2012 National Endowment for the Arts Our Town grant through Arts Enter Cape Charles, a 501c3 non-profit founded by Clelia Sheppard on Virginia's Eastern Shore. The EFV workshop and residency is based on creative place-making strategies which include collaboration between public, private,…


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The future of arts sustainability centers around cross-disciplinary approach to arts programming that weaves the arts with business, tourism, economy, location, and people, making the arts and artists an integral part of town planning, development, and community. Experimental Film Virginia was seeded through a 2012 National Endowment for the Arts Our Town grant through Arts Enter Cape Charles, a 501c3 non-profit founded by Clelia Sheppard on Virginia's Eastern Shore. The EFV workshop and residency is based on creative place-making strategies which include collaboration between public, private, government, non-profit and community sectors on a local, regional, national and international level. With this dynamic network of collaborators the programming, support, and participation in the events surrounding EFV have been full of energy, vitality, and a sense of place. We celebrate diversity and cross-cultural identity. We honor the unique, rural pensinsula landscape which depends on both maritime and agricultural culture and economy. We showcase the charm of our historic town's culture, Victorian homes, dining and beach life to tourists, boosting local economy. The EFV project enjoyed a successful launching in 2013 and 2014 thanks to Arts Enter Cape Charles and is now on her own, building partnerships and in need of your support. We look forward to bringing together international artists in the small town of Cape Charles, Virginia for an incredible, intense art-soaked festival on Virginia’s Eastern Shore from June 25- July 9th 2016.

Experimental Film Virginia alternates between a workshop and residency formula each year. In 2014, we offered our 15 filmmakers hands-on investigation and the chance to get an inside perspective of the keen eye and sophisticated artistry of award-winning film-maker and choreographer, Noemie LaFrance. Sound Design Faculty Paolo Armao brought a heightened awareness to the presence and use of sound in the films and we took full advantage of the local talents of our eccentric town of Cape Charles by welcoming National Geographic cinematographer Erin Harvey to the production team. ShoreFire Productions brought professional level equipment and know-how and somehow in a 5 day period we were able to rehearse, shoot, and edit 15 beautiful films, many of which have been featured in international film festivals.

The 2016 program is designed to offer a select group of artists a rare and valued retreat-style residency where they will enjoy the charm and pulse of a vintage American town on Virginia's Chesapeake Bay in the company of fellow artists and supported by the collaborative team of everyone who comes to make Experimental Film Virginia come to life. Our goal is to create a supportive environment where risk-taking, investigation, and exchange can take place inspired by the sights and sounds of Virginia's Eastern Shore. It doesn't hurt to throw in a sunset meditation or plate of fresh oysters from the Shanty, a local restaurant perched at the edge of the Cape Charles Harbor.

The environment and structure of EFV is designed to trigger new perspectives in the creative process of screen-based work for artists who work in visual, time-based media: sound designers, choreographers, directors, filmmakers, visual artists, dancers, and musicians, composers and digital arts. The 2016 Experimental Film Virginia Festival is accepting applications for resident artists now.

We invite our artists to look specifically at the intersection of sound, movement, and location on the screen. This workshop merges dance for camera with cinema and site specific peformance as a “creative playground” for those interested in making work that exists for or requires the use of the screen. This genre has many names: dance film, dance for the camera, screen dance, cinedance, video dance, time-based media. The skillset you will nurture at EFV is applicable across disciplinary boundaries; from cinema to video installation to editing. Whether you are a film director, a camera operator, an editor, or a choreograper, the composition of movement, sound, and location are essential ingredients to making compelling story-telling works. We bring the production values and processes of the sound and dance worlds together through film, offering a unique context for a truly interdisciplinary environment. This workshop will be a supportive and collaborative space where curiosity, experimentation, and novelty are valued as we investigate different approaches to the creative process of making screen-based work.

Please inquire with questions or suggestions at experimentalfilmva@gmail.com

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