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The NAMAC eBulletin

your latest media arts + culture news—September 2015


From the Executive Director

Wendy Levy

The Collective Momentum of our Alliance
September is one of my favorite months. Maybe it’s the exciting memory of new school shoes. In my more enlightened moments, it’s the vibe of the Jewish High Holidays, with their promise of forgiveness and the hope of renewal and new beginnings.
There is so much going on in the world right now where our humanity, our creativity, and our conviction are needed; I am grateful for, and astounded by, the energy and contributions of the NAMAC community on so many fronts. Of course, I’m thrilled about the announcement of our Rockefeller grant for NAMAC’s Innovation Studio, and the momentum we now have to develop a global network around creativity, science, and climate justice. In truth, our community is already imagining, creating, organizing, distributing, and engaging audiences with all manner of untold stories on so many issues that are helping to codify, decode, and lay open our most deeply felt experiences. These projects and initiatives create a collective momentum that defines the power and contribution of the artist’s voice. Please share your work with us; every NAMAC member has a full page on the website to highlight current projects and vision, to connect others to content, to lead the conversations around art, culture, imagination, and creative change.
NAMAC is a place where media artists, media arts and social sector organizations, funders, and the community-at-large can come together to share ideas, resources, strategies, and innovation. We are offering multiple opportunities this fall for NAMAC members to learn from each other’s experiences (and mistakes!), glean new insights, and share a vision for the future. Working collectively has been a pipe dream for many of us. Here is how NAMAC is working on making it real:
Two New Blog Series
We are introducing two new blog series this fall, Storytelling Matters and The Meaning of Creative Leadership.
The Meaning of Creative Leadership is a monthly series where we will be sharing unique, powerful, and poetic views of the meaning of Creative Leadership, written by NAMAC’s Creative Leadership Lab alumni. In a day and age when the notion of storytelling has been co-opted by big business, and the role of storytelling has been deeply commodified, we intend to hold the space for a conversation led by creative storytellers whose projects and purpose open fresh perspectives on the role of art and artists in cultural transformation. First up is documentary filmmaker and two-time Emmy-winning, internationally recognized leader and pioneer in digital media Katerina Cizek. She writes on "The Beautiful Chaos of Creativity." Check out her post here and add your voice.
Storytelling Matters, the other new blog series, will feature original and curated writing and photography about global story culture and innovation in the hopes of facilitating conversation about the ethical and responsible use of creative technologies in community. The series launched with a powerful crosspost from Photo District News by Conor Risch, "Virtual Reality in Conflict Zones." Please read, comment, and add your voice. If you have a story you’d like to write for the series, let us know!


Member News/Notes from the Field

WeOwnTV Releases Film The Genius of Marian Online
Brand-new member WeOwnTV has just released its documentary The Genius of Marian, about love, Alzheimer’s disease, and the caregiving experience, online. The film is available through Amazon and iTunes.

Skylight Is Crowdfunding To Finish Its Film Rebel Citizen
Little more than a week remains in NAMAC member Skylight's campaign to raise finishing funds for its documentary Rebel Citizen, about the political documentary work of cinematographer Haskell Wexler, which is set to premiere at the New York Film Festival in October.

Justine Nagan Is American Documentary | POV's New Executive Director/Executive Producer
From one NAMAC member organization to another—Justine Nagan, previously Executive Director/Executive Producer at Kartemquin Films, has now taken the same position at American Documentary | POV. Nagan's appointment was announced last month; she began her new position late this month.
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New and Renewing Members

Lauren Fancher is the Coordinator of Athens, GA-based 6X6 Media Arts Events, which produces collaborative media arts events featuring short video, film, performance, sound, and other time-based combination works.

The Harmony Institute uses research methods from across the social sciences works to understand the impact of films, journalism, television, and games on audiences and pressing social issues. Our emphasis on impact brings together research methods from across the social sciences. We apply these frameworks and collaborate closely with media makers and stakeholders to study the impact of entertainment.

Brad Lichtenstein is the president of 371 Productions. His film Penelope, about a nursing home that performs the Odyssey from Penelope's point of view, is currently on PBS. For NAMAC member Kartemquin Films, Brad is the director of a six-hour series for Al Jazeera America called Hard Earned about Americans trying to get by on low wages.

Portland Community Media (renewing) is a center for digital literacy and digital inclusion. It provides Portland with equitable access to media tools, media education, and media distribution platforms.

Rebecca Redeker-Martin (Athena Music Media) (renewing) is a Philly-based media producer and the Founder of Philly Bands 191 Group, a public service organization focused on stimulating and building the local Philadelphia music and art scene.

Norah Shapiro is Director/Producer of Flying Pieces Productions. Her feature-length documentary If You Dare (about a Minneapolis theater company that mentors at-risk children) premiered at the 2009 Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival and debuted on Minnesota public television in 2011.  

Jessica Van Garsse is an independent creative producer and director of documentary film, TV, news, short-form, and branded content. Jessica’s work has appeared on HBO, PBS, National Geographic, History, NBC, CBS, ABC, and A&E. Jessica's current project is Checkmate, a documentary series dedicated to telling breaking human rights stories through a cinematic lens.

Vision Maker Media (renewing) Vision Maker Media supports training to increase the number of American Indians and Alaska Natives producing quality public broadcasting programs, which includes advocacy efforts promoting increased control and use of information technologies and the policies to support this control by American Indians and Alaska Natives.

WeOwnTV is a collective of talented Sierra Leonean filmmakers including Arthur Pratt, Barmmy Boy, and others working in collaboration with American filmmaker Banker White. WeOwnTV is committed to creating and sharing authentic stories, life saving, educational health messaging, and creating forums for self expression and democratic debate.

Grants and Calls

Call for Submissions: Big Sky Documentary Film Festival
Big Sky seeks submissions of documentary films of any length for its 2015 festival. Late deadline: Wednesday, October 14th

Call for Applications: California Documentary Project Grants
The California Documentary Project is a competitive grants program that supports documentary film, radio, and new media production. Grants ranging from $10,000 to $50,000 are available for projects that explore issues of significance to Californians. Deadline: Thursday, October 15th

Pragda's Spanish Film Club Initiative
Pragda offers grants twice a year to help high schools and universities bring contemporary Spanish and Latin American cinema to campuses. Deadline: Thursday, October 15th

Call for Applications: AFI Conservatory Directing Workshop for Women
The American Film Institute offers this hands-on training program in order to increase the number of women working professionally in screen directing. Each participant is required to complete a short film or series by the end of the program. Deadline: Sunday, December 6th

Workshops and Convenings

America Will Be! The Art and Power of 'Weaving Our We'—Imagining America: Artists and Scholars in Public Life
Wednesday, September 30th through Saturday, October 3rd
Baltimore, Maryland

Journalism That Matters: Experience Engagement: How communities and journalists can thrive together
Thursday, October 1st through Sunday the 4th
Portland, Oregon 

Dallas VideoFest 28
Thursday, October 8th through Sunday the 18th
Dallas, Texas

Jihlava International Documentary Film Festival
Tuesday, October 27th through Sunday, November 1st
Jihlava, Czech Republic

Conference for Community Arts Education
Wednesday, November 11th through Saturday the 14th
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Job Bank

Development Director, Allied Media Projects (Detroit, MI)—due Thursday, October 1st

Executive Director, Portland Community Media (Portland, OR)—due Monday, October 12th

Associate Manager, Professional Development Program, Educational Video Center (New York, NY)—due Friday, October 16th

Media and Instructional Coach, Educational Video Center (New York, NY)—due Friday, October 16th

Postdoctoral Associate, Human Computer Interaction Institute, Carnegie Mellon University/Digital Promise (Pittsburgh, PA)—due Tuesday, October 20th

Chase (Bookings) Producer, Editorial Team, The Real News Network (Baltimore, MD)—due Saturday, October 31st

Community Manager, TechChange: The Institute for Technology and Social Change (Washington, DC)—due Saturday, October 31st

Open until filled more jobs on the Job Bank

New in the Resource Library

Have you checked out the NAMAC Resource Library yet? Find the latest story and design tools, cultural strategies, field research, and white papers that will deepen your understanding of innovation and shared practice across the field. 

New this month:
Deepening Engagement for Lasting Impact (prepared by Learning for Action):

The traditional ways of measuring success—content quality and audience size—no longer offer assurance that our work is relevant, effective, or sustainable. The new standard asks not just who we are reaching and how our content is being received, but whether or not our work is making a difference that matters.

Education Leaders Institute Alumni Summit Report (prepared by the National Endowment for the Arts):

Over the course of five years, the National Endowment for the Arts brought together teams from 29 states to collaborate on ways to strengthen states’ arts education policies. The Education Leaders Institute Alumni Summit Report shares the significant findings of what the NEA, its partners, and eight participating alumni states learned together and how it informed the NEA’s arts education strategic plan.

Media Policy Watch

By Rose Kaplan

In response to an appeal of the FCC's still-new Net Neutrality rules brought by the United States Telecom Association on behalf of a number of powerful Internet service providers, organizations that support artists and internet freedom—including NAMAC!—have filed briefs in support of the Net Neutrality rules and against the USTA's appeal.

In a brief filed September 22nd, the Writers Guild of America, West, the Future of Music Coalition, and NAMAC ask the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to uphold the FCC's order and reject the challenge brought by the USTA. Future of Music CEO (and NAMAC Board President) Casey Rae said of the brief:

"For nearly a decade, thousands of artists and independent labels have gone on record in support of strong Net Neutrality rules that ensure their ability to compete alongside the biggest companies online. Now, this same community is urging the court to uphold Title II."



THE JOYS OF NAMAC MEMBERSHIP • Networked Web PortalA robust website that visually showcases the impact stories of member organizations and individual artists serving marginalized and under-resourced communities across the country and around the world • Leadership RoundtablesQuarterly Creative Leadership Roundtables will be developed as a year-round participatory framework for peer-to-peer mentorship relevant to a range of arts and culture staff, from founders to mid-career leaders and next-gen emerging voices • Innovation StudioA virtual and actual lab space to receive mentorship and support in the development of unique open source media/arts/tech initiatives, with an opportunity to present your ideas to funders and investors • Media Policy Action HubThis very public action hub will aggregate breaking news, legislation and current campaigns in a live interactive map interface, focusing on issues like net neutrality, surveillance and human rights, censorship and free press • Global Artist Residency Program and FundTo facilitate the most dynamic collaborations between artists, organizations and communities, NAMAC will partner with trusted cultural exchange programs to design NAMAC co-branded media arts residencies, with a companion fund to support collaborative projects between artists and NGOs • National Conferencecoming June 2016 in Oakland!

National Alliance for Media Arts and Culture
NAMAC facilitates collaboration, strategic growth, innovation, and cultural impact for the media arts field; through a strong members network and state-of-the-art programming, NAMAC supports a vibrant and essential role for media arts in culture and community. JOIN TODAY
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