(2017, 75 min). Directed by Catherine Gund. Dispatches from Cleveland is a feature-length documentary in five parts that closely examines the early 21st century, rust-belt city of Cleveland, Ohio, one of the most racially divided cities in America, in the wake of the police murder of 12-year-old Tamir Rice. The film follows ordinary people – long shaken by police misconduct, social discrimination, and poverty – whose love for their home pushes them to work together to bring about real change.
Learn more via dispatchesfromcleveland.com
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The film, which is also available as as an episodic series on DVD, was recently featured at the Cleveland International Film Festival, Minneapolis Film Festival, Frameline Film Festival, and Chicago's Injustice For All Film Festival where it won a Special Recognition Award for Feature Films. For screening requests, email info [at] aubinpictures [dot] com
(2017, in progress). American Rhapsody explores the intersection of race, history, and visual storytelling through a series of 12 silent, black and white, 35mm films that will be exhibited chronologically starting from 1915 to 1926. American Rhapsody was inspired by the MoMA's recent discovery of the earliest surviving footage for a feature film Lime Kiln Club Field Day, made by an interracial cast and crew for a Black audience. In the first quarter of the 20th century, 100 years ago, Black people and white people made films together with Black casts and narratives of joy. The majority of these films were lost or destroyed. Each of our 12 films represents one year and some ordinarily extraordinary things that happened in the United States. The series is conceived and directed by Garrett Bradley and produced by Catherine Gund, Lauren Domino, and Aubin Pictures.
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American Rhapsody Advisory Table: Brooke Davis Anderson, Jacqueline Woodson, Linda Earle, Thomas J. Lax
Co-Producers: Clifford Ross, Susan Brennan, Theaster Gates
Executive Producers: Agnes Gund, Glenn Ligon
(2017, 90 minutes). Produced and Directed by Catherine Gund and Daresha Kyi. Through its lyrical structure, Chavela will take viewers on an evocative, thought-provoking journey through the iconoclastic life of game-changing artist Chavela Vargas.Centered around never before-seen interview footage of Chavela shot 20 years before her death in 2012, and guided by the stories in Chavela’s songs, and the myths and tales others have told about her – as well as those she spread about herself – the film weaves an arresting portrait of a woman who dared to dress, speak, sing, and dream her unique life into being.
Golden Athens Award for Best Documentary at Athens Internation Film Festival (2017), Audience Award & Grand Jury Prize at both OutFest L.A. and OUTshine Fort Lauderdale (2017), Audience Award & Honorable Mention Jury Award at Frameline (2017), Second Place Audience Award at Berlinale Film Festival (2017), Audience Award & Best Documentary Feature at Reeling35 (2017), Official Selection of AFI Docs, Hot Docs, Austin Gay & Lesbian Festival, and many more.
Click here to check out upcoming screenings as Chavela goes global!
For more information, visit www.chavelavargasfilm.com
(83 min, 2014) Directed and Produced by Catherine Gund. Elizabeth Streb and the STREB Extreme Action Company form a motley troupe of flyers and crashers. Propelled by Streb’s edict that “anything too safe is not action,” these daredevils challenge the assumptions of art, aging, injury, gender, and human possibility. Born to Fly: Elizabeth Streb vs. Gravity traces the evolution of Elizabeth Streb’s movement philosophy as she pushes herself and her performers from the ground to the sky. Revealing the passions behind the STREB dancers’ bruises and broken noses, Born to Fly offers a breathtaking tale about the necessity of art, inspiring audiences hungry for a more tactile and fierce existence in the world.
Visit www.borntoflymovie.com to learn more about the film.
News & Documentary Emmy nomination in Outstanding Arts & Culture Programming (2016), Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature at Rochester ImageOut (2014), Audience Award Fabulous Film Festival (2014), Special Mention Award at Salem Film Fest (2014), 2nd Place Audience Award for Best Documentary at Out on Film Atlanta (2014), Official Selection of SXSW, Full Frame, Sheffield Doc/Fest
(76 min, 2009) Produced and directed by Catherine Gund. A witty and provocative documentary about kids and food politics. Filmed over the course of one year, the film follows two eleven-year-old multi-racial city kids as they explore their place in the food chain. Sadie and Safiyah take a close look at food systems in New York City and its surrounding areas. With the camera as their companion, the girl-guides talk to each other, food activists, farmers, new friends, storekeepers, their families, and the viewer, in their quest to understand what's on all of our plates. Official Selection of the Berlin Film Festival and Seattle International Film Festival. You can purchase What's On Your Plate? DVDs, posters, supplementary books and curriculum through our shop.
(73 min, 2006) Produced by Catherine Gund, Sedika Mojadidi, and Jenny Raskin. Directed by Sedika Mojadidi. An Afghan-American documentary filmmaker follows her father, who specializes in women's medicine, to Afghanistan, where one in seven women dies during childbirth. Beginning his work at Kabul's Laura Bush Maternity Ward in a city where unrest means your life is still very much at risk, filmmaker Sedika Mojadidi's father tries to bring hope and make the best of a deplorable situation, with limited medical supplies, archaic equipment and backed up toilets. It is a place where services and training are desperately needed, where women travel for days to get treated while enduring debilitating illnesses and conditions with grace and courage. A rare and moving glimpse of humanity and the power of compassion set against the backdrop of a land in turmoil and transition, the strength of these women and the quiet deeds of those who attempt to heal is utterly inspiring. Aired on PBS/Independent Lens. AFI Fest 2006 Official Selection. Distributed by First Run Features.
(87 min, 2004) Produced, directed and shot by Catherine Gund. Ann Krsul and Leslie Sullivan want to be mothers together. Ann will carry the baby, and Leslie will leave her job to stay at home and raise their child. Choosing the route of the anonymous sperm bank, they hope to match Leslie's vital statistics so that Ann can give birth to a baby with the potential to look like them both. Ann is a worrier, compulsively analyzing and judging their performance at each stage of the process. Leslie is soothing, a quiet counterpoint. Together they ride the menstrual roller coaster, until finally, one year later, Ann is pregnant. At first both women continue to work. Free time is consumed by pre-birth activity: baby shower registration, Lamaze class and design of the baby announcement. Between events they argue with relatives over how to explain two mommies to their nieces and nephews. Gund follows the Krsul-Sullivan household during Grace's first year. As Ann and Leslie make their way, we are with them, meeting challenges universal to all families and facing those unique to lesbians. Distributed by First Run Features. The DVD is available on Amazon.com.
(54 min, 2004) Produced by Catherine Gund. Directed by Leslie Sullivan. This film focuses on the work of Albert Cullum, an elementary school teacher for over thirty years and a pioneer in American education. Albert Cullum ignited the imagination of his young students, and through his passionate use of poetry and drama, built their self-confidence and inspired them to new heights of originality and joy. Championing an unorthodox educational philosophy, Mr. Cullum regularly taught his elementary school children literary masterpieces, most notable the works of Shakespeare, Sophocles, and Shaw. The one-of-a-kind film interweaves scenes from rare archival television broadcasts and film footage documenting these projects (several recorded in the early 1960s by Robert Downey) with interviews from Mr. Cullum and many of his former students.Featured as the Opening Night Film at the Margaret Mead Film Festival and winner of Best Documentary award at the Ohio Independent Film Festival. Winner of the Golden Starfish Award for Best Documentary at the Hamptons International Film Festival and People's Choice Award at the Starz Denver International Film Festival. This Emmy-nominated film has aired on PBS/Independent Lens. Distributed by First Run Features. Also available on Amazon.com.
(70 min, 2000) Produced by Catherine Gund. Produced and directed by Liz Mermin and Jenny Raskin. Their ranks are shrinking. On Hostile Ground enters the lives of three abortion providers to reveal the obstacles (practical, legal, and emotional) that they face everyday, and shows their struggles with the decision to perform this procedure. It allows providers who work on hostile ground to tell their stories by being themselves, without the help of a narrator. They reveal what their professional decision has done to their personal and family lives. While they each have their own stories, they are all driven more by personal experiences and spiritual beliefs than by political conviction. They each express anger, confusion, and resentment in their own way. By weaving together three very different character portraits, this documentary takes an unusual approach to a volatile social conflict, portraying abortion through the personal stories of those who are in mortal danger because they provide it.
(28 min, 1999) Directed by Catherine Gund and Catherine Lord, edited by Aljernon Tunsil. A fast-paced, humorous and textured video set in New Mexico, Object Lessons uses the creation of a gallery exhibition to question received ideas about lesbian visibility, community, culture, and identity. Distributed by Aubin Pictures.
(90 min, 1997) Produced and directed by Catherine Gund. Raised by his grandmother to be a Pentecostal minister, Ron Athey was speaking in tongues by the age of ten, a heroin addict by seventeen, and a performance artist by twenty-three. Hallelujah! presents Athey's life and work, spending time with him on and off the stage in Mexico City; Zagreb, Croatia; and Los Angeles. Shot on 35mm. Funded by Jerome Foundation, Norton Family Foundation, Estate Project, Wexner Center, individuals.
(30 min, 1997) Directed by Catherine Gund. The first educational media project to examine the related policy initiatives of the radical right wing and illustrate how their hatred and bias hurts ordinary people. It presents three case studies of the democratic right: racist David Duke's electoral bids in Louisiana; the struggle over homophobic Amendment 2 in Colorado, which was ruled unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court in May 1996; and the scapegoating of immigrants, people of color, and women through Proposition 187 and Proposition 209 in California. In each case, When Democracy Works highlights the work of progressive grassroots organizers to thwart the radical right and uphold democratic values. In collaboration with the Interfaith Alliance Foundation, National Campaign for Freedom of Expression, the National Gay & Lesbian Task Force, Political Research Associates. Funded by the Gill Foundation, Allies for Justice, New World Foundation, etc. and individual donors. Distributed by Frameline - purchase the DVD for home or educational usage. Watch the trailer here.
Catherine Gund senior associate producer, segment producer of AIDSFILMS' four hour series about HIV/AIDS targeted at the HIV community covering political, psycho-social, cultural, medical and legal issues of living with HIV/AIDS. (September 1993 - January 1995). Funded by ITVS for 1996 Public Television broadcast. Winner: Golden Apple, The National Educational Film and Video Festival. Distributed by PBS.
(13 min, 1994) Catherine Gund producer, director, camera, editor. Have you ever wanted to be a boy? Would that be different from being a lesbian or a passing woman? What does the story of Brandon Teena have to offer lesbians? Video, shot with a PXL2000 camera. Distributed by The Kitchen.
(60 min, 1994) Produced by Catherine Gund, Polly Thistlethwaite, Dolores Perez, Jean Carlomusto. Inspiring four-part documentary about constructions of lesbian history, community and culture. Funded in part by NY State Council on the Arts and Astraea Foundation.
(11 min, 1993) Produced by Catherine Gund and Julie Tolentino.
Bargain, undress, caress, kiss, lick and entice with the women of New York's legendary Clit Club, which lit up the scene from 1990 to 2002. A lesson in cruising and busting a move, told with humor, affection and intimacy.
Video. Distributed by The Kitchen.
(60 min, 1993) Produced by Catherine Gund and Cyrille Phipps, for The Gay and Lesbian Emergency Media Campaign. Documents the insurgent "Religious" Right and its broad-based agenda, analyses their campaigns for anti-gay initiatives in Oregon and Colorado in 1992, also examines issues of family and religion in lesbian and gay communities. Video. Distributed by Aubin Pictures.
(30 min, 1991) Produced by Catherine Gund and Jacqueline Woodson. Based on Woodson's humorous essay about growing up as a black lesbian Jehovah's Witness. Funded in part by Frameline. Winner: Best Documentary Charlotte Film and Video Festival 1992; Runner-up Non-Fiction Visions of U.S. AFI/Sony 1991; Jury Award University of Oregon Queer Film Festival 1993.
(1987- 1992) Catherine Gund (as Catherine Saalfield) documented the AIDS crisis and ACT UP/NY activities from 1987 - 1992. She collected candid footage of the Montreal AIDS conference; ACT UP protests and lectures including the Kiss-In at St. Vincent's Hosptal in 1989 and the Target Bush protest of 1991; as well as AIDS activist videos produced during the time period. Her footage has been featured a number of critcally-acclaimed documentaries including in Koch (2012); How to Survive a Plague (2012); United in Anger (2012); and We Were Here.
A full list of this archive is available at NYPL.
AIDS activist video collective affiliated with ACT UP/NY. Productions include: "Target City Hall," 28 min, 1989; "Pride," 28 min, 1989; "Be A DIVA," 58 min, 1990 (for Deep Dish TV); "Like A Prayer," 28 min, 1991; Public Service Announcements.
Available at Printed Matter Bookstore (NYC), ACT UP/NY. Footage and screening requests email info [at] aubinpictures [dot] com.
(12 min, 1990) Produced by Catherine Gund and Zoe Leonard.
Intimate scenes of gentle sexuality and domesticity set to the mechanical cadence of a projector (evoking a feeling somewhere between the repetitive labour of a sewing machine and violence of a machine gun) are juxtaposed with images of police and sirens to highlight the alarming intrusion of America’s laws on queer people and women’s bodies in healthcare, sexual expression, and desire.
Video. (Originally presented as a video installation: bed, sheets w/silk-screened laws governing the body, surveillance camera, 14 min, 1989.) Distributed by The Kitchen.
(25 min, 1989) Produced by Catherine Gund and Ray Navarro. Documents the emergence of a problematic city-sponsored needle exchange program to combat the spread of HIV. Video. Produced for the Gay Men's Health Crisis, "Living With AIDS" cable TV series. Distributed by Gay Men's Health Crisis.
A collectively produced weekly public access show. Shows include: "Reading the Weekly Mail," about censorship and an oppositional South African newspaper (1988). "Simon Watney speaks about Clause 28 and Homophobia in the U.K." (1988). "Donna Haraway Reads the National Geographic of Primates," (1987). "The Strange Case of Baby M," with Martha Rosler, (1989), funded by Art Matters, Inc. "Television across Borders," with Michael Silverman, (1989). Distributed by Paper Tiger Television.
(30 min. 1994) Directed by Daniel Shapiro and Produced by Catherine (Saalfield) Gund.
A series of video interview highlights with 13 artists/lenders who were a part of Shapiro's 1994 spring exhibition at The Museum for African Art in NYC. They reflected on notions of influence, desire, interest in African Art, perception, history and identity, and their own individual connections to their pieces of African Art.
Interviewees include: Arman, Terry Adkins, Kurt DelBanco, Mel Edwards, Eric Fischl, Ellsworth Kelly, Brice Marden, Ouattara, Philip Pearlstein, Howardena Pindell, Lorna Simpson, Fred Wilson, and Terry Winters.