AIR Finale!

Sharad poses at the end of the night with his flowers and Chelsea Oscar award

The 2012 Artist in Residence series ended on 11/3/12 with the premiere screening of Sharad Kant Patel’s feature film Christian Roane. We had a packed house of more than 60 people join us at the River Gallery for the film.

The crowd at River Gallery awaits the screening

The partners, Chelsea District Library and River Gallery thanked Sharad for his great ideas and hard work throughout this project with flowers and a Chelsea Oscar trophy, created by local artist John Schwarz.

Sharad with his Chelsea Oscar, created by artist John Schwarz

Thanks to everyone to helped to make this series a truly fantastic one. We drew inspiration and support from many sources – from Donald Harrison of the Ann Arbor Film Festival who helped us find direction in the beginning to actors from the Purple Rose Theatre Company, who worked with Sharad to shoot scenes to use in the editing workshop.  Sharad is now using those scenes to create a short film called From Chelsea With Love.

Thanks to the more than 300 people who attended the screenings and workshops we held as part of this series. Thanks to the Chelsea Center for the Arts for sharing their space and technology for the workshops. Thanks to the library staff and volunteers and River Gallery staff and interns who planned and ran these events and set up equipment.

Library volunteer Andrew MacLaren and Library Director Bill Harmer install a temporary screen at River Gallery for the premiere

Thanks to the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs and the National Endowment for the Arts for their support for this program. Without their grant support, the Artist in Residence program would not have been possible. The contributions of MCACA, NEA and the Chelsea District Library and River Gallery are what enabled us to bring talented filmmakers to Chelsea, teach new skills to our community members and provide the appropriate equipment and technology for each event.

     Chelsea District Library logo  River Gallery logo

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Film Premiere: Christian Roane

Join us on Saturday, November 3rd at 6 pm for the premiere of Artist in Residence Sharad Patel’s feature film Christian Roane.

With a blend of horror and mystery, Christian Roane tells the story of a young man on top of the world – he is a fraternity playboy at a prestigious college, but something darker lurks beneath the surface. After being rebuffed by a Sarah, a misfit girl on campus, Christian falls away from his circle of partying frat brothers and becomes more and more obsessed with Sarah. Gradually, the level of Christian’s disturbance becomes clear – and eerie questions about his true nature arise.

Sharad has worked on this film for more than five years, pursuing this personal project constantly through other jobs, films, even cross-country moves. This premiere will be a major culmination of his work and we invite you to join us and experience the dark world of Christian Roane.

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Red Blob Massacre – ONE NIGHT ONLY!

Filmmaker and performance artist Emilia Javanica is bringing her epic Red Blob Massacre performance to Chelsea for one night only! On Saturday, October 13th, River Gallery will be taken over by the story of a girl who gets bullied, and the GIANT, MAN-EATING, RED BLOB that avenges her!

This event is so much more than a film screening – it’s a screening and a live performance, with music, dancing and much more. Come and eat popcorn and enjoy the event. But whatever you do… don’t laugh at Maddy’s teeth. It might be last thing you do.

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Community-Created Stop Motion Animation

Filmmaker Kelly Sears visited on Oct. 6th and lead a group of community members in a stop-motion filmmaking workshop at the River Gallery. Using 1960s commercials from the Prelinger Archive and found images and ephemera, the groups collaborated to make three separate short films in one afternoon.

This totally unique experience gave our participants a taste of the process of creating the kind of stop-motion films that Kelly creates and a feel for the filmmaking experience, by staring with an idea and walking away with a finished project.

The video is available on Vimeo to stream or download. It’s also available on River Gallery’s Youtube channel:


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Congratulations, Martin Thoburn!

Filmmaker Martin Thoburn was awarded 1st place in the Ypsi 24 Hour Film Shootout on October 7.  Martin recieved $1,000 prize money and The Ypsi trophy for Best in Show for his film “Return to the Same City.”

Back in July, Martin gave a screening and a talk about his work at the Chelsea District Library as part of the 2012 Artist in Residence program. He discussed his process and his approach to film and showed great examples from his very early work to his later and more complete works, such as his short film “Frames.”

Congratulations to Martin on his win in the Ypsi 24 Hour Shootout!

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Nationally Recognized Filmmaker Kelly Sears Visits Chelsea

Kelly Sears is an animator and filmmaker living in Galveston, Texas, where she is a current resident at the Galveston Artist Residency. Her collage films are created from discarded periodicals, books, archives, and orphan films. They harness images of the past to reflect on the present. Her films draw on experimental, documentary and narrative practices, and feature both analog and digital animation techniques. Sears’ portfolio of work has been shown at a tremendous number of venues, including the Ann Arbor, Sundance, American Film Institute, and SXSW Film Festivals, and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Hammer Museum, and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

As part of the 2012 Artist in Residence program, Kelly will visit Chelsea on Saturday, 10/6 for a day of film appreciation and experience. She will present a morning screening as well as a hands-on collaborative workshop.

Film Screening: Little Histories – with Special Guest Kelly Sears | Saturday, October 6 | 10:30-12:30pm | River Gallery |120  S. Main St.

Kelly Sears will show a decade’s worth of experimental animations in Little Histories.  Using photos from encyclopedias, archival films, and aging magazines, she collages these images into science fiction tales, horror movie narratives, and unlikely documentaries.  The films are made from a combination of analogue and digital animation techniques.  The shorts are possible and impossible at the same time.

Collaborative Workshop: Cut-ups and Found Sound, Stop-Motion Basics with Special Guest Kelly Sears | Saturday, October 6 | 1-4 pm | River Gallery | 120 S. Main St.

In this workshop with Kelly Sears, participants will make a collaborative collage, stop-motion animation using images from magazines, books, and advertisements.  The animation will be paired with an appropriated sound track.  Drawing on the technique of the exquisite corpse, we will create new meaning through mixing experimental animation with the provided soundtrack.  At the end of the workshop, we will have jointly made an experimental short film. Click to register.

For more about Kelly, check out this series she wrote for the Huffington Post about her work and her involvement with the Sundance Film Festival. Here’s a quote about her filmmaking process:

All my short films come out of scavenging. I love going to thrift stores, flea markets, and garage sales. I have a thing for something that can find a new life after it’s been cast off. I’m not sure how much of a redemption narrative all of this is, but I can say that this is where all the goods for making a film come from.

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Once It Started It Could Not End Otherwise

Check out this eerily awesome trailer for Kelly Sears’ film Once It Started It Could Not End Otherwise.

Kelly is visiting Chelsea on Saturday, 10/6 to screen her films and offer a hands-on workshop which is totally a once-in-a-lifetime offer that everyone should take advantage of! How many people get to actually make a film with an accomplished filmmaker who has screened at the Sundance Film Festival? THIS MAY BE YOUR ONLY CHANCE!

Join us. Meet Kelly. Fall under the spell of her films. Start here:

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