The Video Association of Dallas celebrated the 25th anniversary of its VideoFest on September 26-30, 2012 at its original home, the Dallas Museum of Art. In many respects, VideoFest is one of the best kept secrets in Dallas. VideoFest is now the oldest and largest video festival in the United States. Plus, it continues to garner critical and popular acclaim. This year’s VideoFest had a record attendance.
The official start of the festival was on Thursday, September 27th. Attendees screened two films: The Playroom (a new drama from Dallas sisters Gretchen and Julia Dyer) and Ann Richards’ Texas (a new documentary). Wednesday night offered a different experience called Expanded Cinema.
Expanded Cinema: VideoFest Goes Outdoors
Bart Weiss, Director of VideoFest, commissioned local video artists to show their work on the external walls of the Omni Dallas Hotel in the evening. This part of the program was called Expanded Cinema. VideoFest went outdoors. Residents of Dallas had a great viewing spot at East Jefferson and East Colorado boulevards. Gordon K. Smith captured these great photos from Expanded Cinema.
Go ahead and check out this short video to introduce you to the 25th year of VideoFest.
Bart Weiss Reflects on 25 Years of VideoFest
For those of you that do not know Bart Weiss, you would be amazed at all he has done (and continues to do). Bart is an award-winning independent film and video producer, director, editor and educator and consultant who works, plays, and lives in Dallas.
Bart enjoys teaching and building up the local video/film community in Dallas. As a teacher, Bart has taught film and video at Texas A&M’s Visualization Lab, Southern Methodist University, the University of Texas at Austin and Arlington, and West Virginia State College. In addition, you can find him serving as Co-President of the Board of Directors of the Association of Independent Video and Filmmakers (AIVF), past Vice President of the Texas Association of Film and Tape Professionals (TAFTP), founder and past President of the West Virginia Filmmakers’ Guild, and co-founder of the Dallas Video Festival and the Video Association of Dallas.
In his spare time, Bart organized the Dallas VideoFest for its 25th year. Bart is one of those rare people, who seems to have his a time machine or a clone because he gets so much done with his busy schedule. Bart Weiss took time to reflect on the 25th anniversary of the festival:
This year’s VideoFest was the best ever. It was truly a journey starting with Expanded Cinema program on the wall of the Omni Hotel, pointing to the future of video and urban architecture. Our exploration of media went back to looking at A MAN WITH A MOVIE CAMERA, the essence of post-modern editing in a silent work with an extraordinary live performance from Voices of Change, was a big hit that again spoke in a new and old way to the history and power of media.
On Sunday, we followed that up with SIDE BY SIDE taking the issues of film and video in a deep way looking at where we were, we we are, and where might be in the future with media. Gene Youngblood’s presentation helped us put this all together. We have certainly given folks some things to think about.
At the same time, we were able to celebrate new work from some our best local filmmakers. This was highlighted by a Tribute to Cynthia Salzman Mondell and Allen Mondell and seeing new extraordinary work from Mark Birnbaum, the Dallas premieres of THE MAYOR and THE BEAT HOTEL and emotional hometown screening of Julia Dyer’s PLAYROOM.
We are quite excited by our award winners. RED FLAG, by Alex Karpovsky, transcends it’s perceived Mumblecore roots and could be that genres first crossover film. We are so happy about WONDER WOMEN winning best documentary; it tells a powerful story about how the media can effect us and empower women and girls. We were excited to see a new direction for Bil Plympton’s animations and happy that the GUARD DOG GLOBAL JAM won best animation.
We are so grateful for all the makers, the funders (thanks backers on Kickstarter!), our board staff and volunteers for making this year so special for everyone.
Here’s to another 25 years, Bart!
Some Final Thoughts on VideoFest
Recently, I wrote about What Learned from Pixar and Marvel Artists at Industry Giants 2012. For me, I think interactive designers can learn about from the creators of films. Our respective industries really make us “brothers of a different design mother.” VideoFest is something interactive designers should attend. We all share storytelling, personas, and visual designs in our different mediums. We just them for different purposes.
As VideoFest 2013 ramps up, I will keep you posted. I hope to see you there.