Stashu Kybartas is an award-winning, filmmaker He has received multiple grants and prizes for his cutting-edge film productions that explore such wide-ranging themes as working-class immigration to the US, social upheaval in Eastern Europe and homophobia, both at home and abroad. In 1993-94 he was awarded a J. William Fulbright Foreign Award to lecture in American Studies and Documentary Production at the University of Vilnius. He has been awarded multiple artist residencies at the Leighton Artists Colony at the Banff Center in Alberta, Canada.
Kybartas’ films and media projects have won numerous awards in festivals in the United States and internationally. He is the recipient of numerous grants and awards from arts funders including the National Endowment for the Arts, the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts and the City of Chicago International Artists Program.
Kybartas has held teaching positions in Illinois, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania, London, England, Dublin, Ireland as well as in Eastern Europe. At present he teaches at the University of Michigan Department of Screen Arts and Cultures.
It was while he was in Lithuania on the Fulbright that he began work on the documentary COUSIN KASYTĖ. This documentary features an elderly Lithuanian woman who struggles alone to maintain her traditional rural life in the face of wrenching social change. Her inspiring example of moral independence offers insights into the web of complex issues facing the newly formed democracies of the former Soviet Union. For this project he has received support from the State of Illinois Arts Council, the Chicago Artist International Program, the USIS Fulbright Program and the Soros Foundation.
Kybartas won a Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts in recognition of the critically acclaimed video installation KING ANTHRACITE. This work which has been exhibited both nationally and internationally, weaves together the stories of immigrant coal miners in Pennsylvania at the beginning of the century.
His poignant documentary DANNY chronicles the last days of a young man with AIDS who returns home to his working-class family in search of reconciliation. DANNY has been shown throughout the world and has won numerous awards including first prizes at RioFest in Brazil, the Atlanta Arts Festival and the American Film Institute Video Festival.