Lola & Brandon (Working Title)


For the month-long residency at RU, I would like to propose the production of a short film with the working title of Lola & Brandon. The film will utilize the techniques of live action acting, animation and collage and will be constructed through a series of narrative vignettes about a young girl named Lola and her little brother Brandon. Lola and Brandon are raised in a troubled home, but find respite and escape in each other through imaginative play and their loving friendship. When Brandon dies suddenly, Lola finds herself alone and her world is overwhelmingly mute and filled with grief. But to her surprise, she quickly meets a strange shape-shifting creature with a familiar air. Can this creature be trusted? Where is it from? Why is this being visiting Lola in a series of whimsical encounters, which are sometimes bizarre, and always a little unsettling? In this proposed short film, these questions are explored, as is the seeming contradiction present in daily life when one is faced both with fascinating beauty and devastating grief.

This film is a critical progression in my artistic practice for several reasons. At the forefront of my mind while proposing this project is the challenge of mining a very personal autobiographical experience in my life (the story takes from my childhood experience of my little brother’s death).

Photo of the artist as a child with her brother Brandon. 

I have always pulled from my surroundings and experience in my work, yet I have steered away from anything too personal and focused much more on research, grand narratives or systems imbued with odd ambiguity. However, I think the time is right for this project and that this extra layer of authenticity of experience will add something fresh to my artistic practice. You know that old John Baldessari quote, "If I saw the art around me that I liked, then I wouldn't do art”? I wouldn't go as far as saying I don't like any art I see, but if you were to ask me the one thing I feel is missing in the current art conversation the word intimacy comes to mind and I would like to explore this idea in my artwork. Creatively, my experimental videos, collages on paper, painting and photography, although heavily inform each other, have lived somewhat separately in my practice. I am very excited by the idea of integrating them in a dynamic way for this project. 

Film concept collage, click to enlarge 

My plan of execution would begin as soon as I learned of my acceptance into the RU residency so that I would enter into it prepared with a fleshed out storyboard, concept drawings, models/sketches of sets, actors auditioned, b roll, sound and images collected. This would help ensure my time at RU would be to the greatest benefit of the project. Upon entering the residency, I would use my time in a concentrated mix of experimentation, new making and a scheduled production timeline, utilizing the rich expertise and resources provided by the RU staff and environment.

Resources that I can see would greatly benefit this project would be a space to shoot scenes and build modest sized sets, assistance or a consultation with an expert with advanced understanding of visual effects and sound design for a project merging varied media and continued dialogue on the project while in process with RU staff.