February 14, 2023: Screening of Yehuda Sharim’s film Letters2Maybe (2021)
February 15, 2023: Workshop with Yehuda Sharim (“A Map of Light: Creativity & Inspiration during Dark Times”)
On behalf of The Obama Institute for Transnational American Studies, Prof. Dr. Mita Banerjee cordially invites everyone to two events with filmmaker Professor Yehuda Sharim (UC Merced, California):
Tuesday, Feb 14 (4 pm, room 00.212, Philo II)
Screening of Sharim’s documentary film Letters2Maybe (2021)
with an introduction by the director and a Q&A session afterwards.
Yehuda Sharim is a writer, photographer, filmmaker, and poet. As the son of Persian immigrants to Israel, his work focuses on the relationship between the quotidian and poetic. Sharim’s films have appeared in film festivals, artistic venues, and universities across the world. Oscillating between fiction and documentary filmmaking, his work offers an intimate portrayal of those who refuse to surrender amidst daily devastation and culminating strife, offering a vision for equality and a renewed solidarity in a divisive world. He currently serves as an Assistant Professor in the Program of Global Art Studies, University of California, Merced.
Letters2Maybe is an intimate portrayal of those who refuse to surrender amidst daily devastation and culminating strife, offering a vision for equality and a renewed sense of solidarity in a divisive country. Letters2Maybe offers a fluid and eclectic tapestry of physical and emotional movement of different immigrant communities as they encounter impossible challenges in a country of compounded catastrophes. By embracing a kaleidoscopic style of storytelling to highlight the poetics and precarity that follow the craving for freedom, Letters2Maybe is an unfinished letter, articulating the ever-growing yet unflinching demand for justice and tenderness in our world today. (2021; 92 min.)
New Jersey Film Festival: Letters2Maybe Review
International Documentary Film Festival Vienna: Excellence in Visual Anthropology Award
Wednesday, Feb 15 (10-12am, room 02.102, Philo II)
An informal workshop, led by Yehuda Sharim
“A Map of Light: Creativity & Inspiration during Dark Times”
A Map of Light: Creativity & Inspiration during Dark Times (workshop) – The camera is obsessed with light. Darkness is never considered aesthetically pleasing. We are told that we need to see: we need to see as a way to learn, and make sense. And light is the most critical ingredient in shaping that illusion of “seeing” as “being.” We are like our cameras, chasing lights, forgetting that darkness and the uncertainty that accompanies darkness are inseparable from any source of light. In this talk, we will interrogate what it means to follow a creative vision (start a film, book, and more), exploring this desire to create, shape, and enter a space of experimentation. We will examine different aspects of community-cinema and take into consideration the various personal/collective challenges and doubts that keep us away from the work that we know we are meant to do. This talk is about that thirst to film and create new visions during calamitous times.
Everyone is welcome to join us for one or both events. We’re looking forward to seeing you!