UPDATE: In just 22 days, we’ve reached our goal! But let's not stop here! We want this to be the best possible film and have set a new goal of raising an additional $2,000. Our new goal is $7,000.
These additional funds will go towards hiring our composer, free feral to score the entire film (as opposed to small sections), enhance the colors of the film by hiring a professional color correction specialist and enhance the title sequence and possibly add some animation by hiring a motion-graphics and animation designer.
Thank you for believing in us, in the importance of Sunni Patterson’s story, in our city and its people!
A R T I S T I N E X I L E
World renowned poet, Sunni Patterson’s story of her return to New Orleans after being displaced for twelve years following Katrina is told through a primarily observational-style documentary as she struggles to come to terms with her hometown that has been much altered. The film blurs the lines between documentary and narrative as it merges Sunni’s original poetry, music, dance, and magical realism as we follow Sunni and her family throughout New Orleans, from her father’s Ninth Ward neighborhood where she grew up, to her mother’s Algiers neighborhood where she now resides. The film captures the beauty of her people, who, despite all it, still call New Orleans home.
"I am an artist in exile...a spirit on the run...displaced from the familiar, transplanted into the foreign, only to discover that the one has become the other.. Either things happened “before the Storm” or “after the Storm.” I wonder if our Ancestors held this same thought during their displacement to these shores. Is the cultural genetic passed from one generation to the next, one of a nomadic people in search of a place?”
- Sunni Patterson
Artist in Exile is one of five films that was awarded the Tricentennial Story Incubator award, a partnership between NOVAC (New Orleans Video Access Center), The New Orleans Film Society, Kickstarter and the Mayor's Office of Cultural Economy/Film New Orleans and #CreateLouisiana. If we reach our goal and raise $5,000 or more, the Tricentennial Story Incubator will match the funds with a $5,000 award, doubling the project funds! That means that every dollar you give to the project will be matched with a dollar so that your support can go even further in making this film a reality.
B U D G E T
Our total budget is $20,000 for this project, half of which has already been raised by Junebug Productions, in-kind support from Visible Productions and with support from the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation. We need you to help us raise the remaining 25% of the budget which will be matched 1:1 by the Tricentennial Story Incubator. Our team is 100% local, from documentary subjects, performing artists, crew, locations, caterers, T-shirt printer...so 100% of the funds raised by the project (minus the Kickstarter fees) will go back in to the hands of New Orleans residents. We work hard to raise funds so that we can pay our team equitable fees.
C O L L A B O R A T O R S
This project is an artistic collaboration between Visible Productions, Junebug Productions and Sunni Patterson and is the third collaboration between our core team (Sunni Patterson, Stephanie McKee, Kiyoko McCrae and Jason Foster), the first being the theatrical production, Gomela/to return: Movement of Our Mother Tongue and the second being the short poetry film, Black Back.
Sunni Patterson (Poet) has been the featured performer at many of the Nation’s premier spoken word venues, including HBO’s Def Poetry Jam and BET’s Lyric Cafe. She has also shared her work on the Arsenio Hall Show, TEDWomen (Momentum 2015), and on several international stages. Inspired by her words, Beats by Dre commissioned Sunni to provide the soundscape for tennis great, Serena Williams’, workout (wireless beats) commercial, and the congratulatory piece for Williams’ third US Open win (Congratulations Serena ft. Sunni Patterson). As a highly sought after lecturer, workshop facilitator, and performer, she deliberately uses art as a tool to recognize, address, and eliminate all forms of oppression. She has trained under great scholars, allowing her to become a Certifed Professional Life Coach (CPC), a certifed instructor of Chi Kung (Qi Gong) and Tai Chi for Health, and a diligent student in the healing and spiritual arts.
“There are few people in the world like Sunni Patterson, the visionary poet, singer, and activist. A voice for those who struggle daily, Patterson offers hope and calls for change. The power in her words lies not only in their meaning, but in their delivery.” - Jennifer Panicali http://www.thirteen.org/unsungheroines/women-cat/sunni-patterson-new-orleans-poet-singer-and-activist/
Kiyoko McCrae (Producer/Co-Director), a theater and film director and producer is Director of Visible Productions and former Managing Director of Junebug Productions. Film directing credits include Come Home, Black Back, Free Southern Theater: Beginnings. Theater directing credits include Lockdown (Big Easy Award nominee), Voices from the Back of the Class and Finding Joy in Unlikely Places. Kiyoko worked as producer and dramaturg for the theater production, Gomela/to return (NEFA National Theater Project receipient). She is currently collaborating with Goat in the Road Productions on an original immersive theater production, The Stranger Disease and developing a theater production with musician Leyla McCalla about Radio Haiti that is commissioned by Duke Performances. www.kiyokomccrae.com
Jason Foster (Co-Director/Editor), director, editor and producer is co-founder of FosterBear Films, which he founded with David Beard in 2011. FosterBear Films has produced over twenty short documentaries, short narrative films, music videos and promotional videos. Their work has been featured in the New York Times, Shadow and Act, Indiewire, TruthOut, Okayplayer. Jason is a 2015 New Orleans Film Society Emerging Voices Fellow and has received numerous New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Foundation Community Partnership grants for his work documenting Louisiana artists. Jason is a graduate of Georgia Southwestern State University (B.A. in Communication). His work can be found at www.fosterbearfilms.com
Stephanie McKee (Producer), Exeucutive Artistic Director of Junebug Productions is a performer, choreographer, educator, facilitator and cultural organizer who is deeply committed to creating art that substantively refects disparate conditions, as leveraging it as a powerful tool for change. Ms McKee is a member of Alternate ROOTS, a board member of National Performance Network and is a New Voices emerging Leader alumnus and a 2015 APAP Leadership Fellow. As an organizer, she was the founding Director of the 7th Ward Neighborhood Center, a part of Neighborhood Housing Services of New Orleans. Stephanie was the Director of the New Orleans Urban Bush Women Summer Leadership Institute 2009-2015 and was Co-Artistic Director for the 2011 Homecoming Project. www.junebugproductions.org
Zac Manuel (Director of Photography) is a New Orleans bred-and-based filmmaker whose work in film and music video has been exhibited at festivals and on platforms around the world. His work focuses on the intersections of politics and social psychologies, mostly in communities of color. As cinematographer, his credits include Cover Me (Rotterdam International Film Festival; Prospect 3, New Orleans), Like (Field of Vision, SXSW) and Aloné (New York Times OpDocs, Sundance 2017 Jury Award Winner, Best Non-Fiction Short). As director, Zac’s films In The Garden, The Clock, Thelema, and Painted Lady have played in competition in festivals worldwide. His work has appeared on The Washington Post, MTV, Billboard, Stereogum, and Pitchfork. Painted Lady is available on by Shorts HD and Closed To Interpretation on MTV News. His current documentary feature, Bloodthicker, follows three young rappers as they fight to build upon their fathers’ legacies while navigating the pitfalls of rap culture www.bloodthickerfilm.com
P R O J E C T S T A T U S
We have raised 50% of the funds needed for the project and we will begin shooting in November. Since we have not started production yet, most of the footage that you see in the video is from our previous collaboration, Black Back. Artist in Exile will have a similar look and feel with its vibrant saturated color palette. We have an excellent track record of completing projects and all of the projects that we have collaborated together on have been delivered on time.
W h y A R T I S T I N E X I L E ?
New Orleans is changing at an alarming pace and much of its unique culture is under serious threat of disappearing. Accelerated by Katrina and exasperated by gentrification, short-term rentals, an upshot in tourism, and shifting policy around permits and noise ordinances, the “new” New Orleans is being commodified to make way for developers and businesses. Sunni Patterson was born and raised in the Ninth Ward. Her story is representative of so many New Orleanians who have either been displaced by Katrina or priced out since. One of our goals for this project is to address issues of displacement and gentrification which is not unique to New Orleans but it felt in communities all around the world.
R E W A R D S
Here is a sneak peek at some of the rewards we have in store for you!
Risks and challenges
Like all film projects, there are some risks and challenges that come with completing the project but our biggest risk is not reaching our Kickstarter goal! The matching funds from the Tricentennial Story Incubator will only be granted to us if we reach our Kickstarter goal.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (37 days)