My work in film and video originated with my doctoral work in philosophy. Specifically, I am interested in the idea of ‘home’ and related issues of belonging, alienation, and dislocation. I am interested in how these issues are persistently impacted by an expansive technological sphere. Martin Heidegger, Paul Virilio, Jean Baudrillard, Martin Buber, Susan Sontag and Gaston Bachelard remain significant sources for my work. Annie Dillard’s essays continue to inspire me.
Heidegger’s notion of being “thrown” into a world was a major source for “It Goes Without Saying” and my earlier documentary, “Shelter: Conversations with Homeless Men”. Bachelard’s ideas on a poetics of space were critical to the development of “Locust Point” and “if…then…”. Buber’s ideas helped shape the approach to “Nicodemus” while Baudrillard and Virilio were critical to the approach to “breathe in…breathe out…” and “Running to Keep from Falling”.
Film and video making remain my vehicle for research into these issues and concerns. I have become very interested in dance for the camera. Both dance and film are drawn to movement without the “assistance” of language. I am also quite interested in personal essay film. I recently completed my first attempt in this genre, entitled “if…then….” This film explores my childhood memories of events associated with a traumatic accident leaving me blind in my left eye. (I am also writing the music for this film, as I did for “Locust Point” and for “Nicodemus”). Film, especially, seems to be in a kind of sympathy with remembering and reflection. For me, film, particularly the actual production efforts, provides a unique opportunity for a prolonged and intense engagement with a world. Looking through a camera offers the chance to see a world looking back…a rare and ephemeral moment. Annie Dillard, in her essay “Does the World Have Meaning”, suggests that art assists us in holding the world together. I am inclined to agree.