For the past two years, I’ve been producing media installations underwritten by New Mexico Arts, and debuting during the annual Fantase Fest, an initiative of Creative Santa Fe. These installations are an outgrowth of Santa Fe University of Art and Design‘s Outdoor Vision Fest, an annual event which I co-founded and have been executive-producing since 2011.
Careers are always strange and unpredictable things. When I went to film school at UCLA, I never imagined that I would someday be writing scripts for videogames; it was, after all, the era of Pac-Man and Centipede. Power pellets and poisoned mushrooms aside, neither game was a media experience heavy on narrative.
The first time I came to Santa Fe as a Visiting Professor of Screenwriting, more than a decade ago, I (like nearly every tourist) visited the City Different’s beloved Santuario de Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe (typically known as the Santuario), the ancient Catholic church set along the Santa Fe River. Built at about the time the Declaration of Independence was being signed, the chapel served Santa Fe’s poor farmers alongside the river bank just west of downtown, and was devoted specifically to Our Lady of Guadalupe — whose own semiotics knits together Indian, Spanish, and Mexican cultural identities and puts a distinctly New World stamp on Catholicism.
Our 5th outing of Outdoor Vision Fest™ attracted its biggest crowd to date (see the handy-dandy chart at the bottom of this post), and despite a few glitches, garnered essentially universal acclaim on Twitter and Instagram.
One of the best aspects of having co-created and then shepherded OVF these past years has been working with up&comers like The Maya Spectra and VJ Buran; alumni who are already making an impact on Santa Fe’s media and cultural affairs scenes (Keith Ryan Riggs, Katelyn Peer, and Seth Fuller, to name a few); talented guest artists like choreographer Jocelyne Danchick; and faculty colleagues Brad Wolfley and Tom Miller.
It’s been a heady week for Outdoor Vision Fest™, the annual Santa Fe University of Art and Design event that I (for lack of a better term) executive produce. A grant proposal I wrote secured funding for an “OVF Collective”/Fantase Fest installation to debut on June 20, 2015 (underwritten by New Mexico Arts, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs). (An aside: worth reminding your local New Mexico state legislator that NM Arts should get fully funded this year!)
And, just as excitingly, OVF was nominated by readers of the Santa Fe Reporter as “Best (Event) of Santa Fe,” competing — incredibly — against festivals like Indian Market and Santa Fe Fiestas, which have been around for many decades.
A reminder about the inaugural Cinevision event — a panel I’ll be appearing on hosted by New Mexico Lawyers for the Arts, called: Experiments in Light and Space. 4pm, Thursday, May 1, at The Screen in Santa Fe. Immersive dome artist and consultant Ethan Bach has been added to the panel. Come out if you can! We’ll try to make it super-interesting and informative …
On Thursday, May 1 at 4pm, I’ll be guesting on a panel entitled Experiments in Space and Light: a Conversation on Emergent and New Media Projects … in New Mexico. The panel is being presented by New Mexico Lawyers for the Arts as part of the inaugural Cinevision Festival, which is being hosted by The Screen from May 1-4.
Scheduled guests include Currents New Media‘s co-principal Frank Ragano, Creative Santa Fe’s program director Katelyn Peer, and Lumenscapes Illumination Media‘s principal Joe Dean. One of the topics, will, of course, be Santa Fe University‘s Outdoor Vision Fest™ (OVF), which I co-founded and continue to pilot. But what’s interesting is how much OVF has beomce part of a much larger tapestry, as we grow and evolve 21st-century media making here in Northern New Mexico. Can collaborative efforts accelerate both creative and economic development in this arena? This panel hopes to find out!