The 11th Annual Brooklyn International Film Festival just wrapped up on Sunday June 8th at the Brooklyn Lyceum. Designing events for a film festival can be exciting and tricky. Such an undertaking is worthy of its own feature length narrative. It would definitely be a dramatic comedy full of adult situations and little animated characters running about. This is my second year working with the Brooklyn Fest, and although I love film, events, and the team, I wasn’t initially psyched to design one of the festival sidebars this year – one of the smaller venues playing films during the festival. Why? I wanted to lay some next level ideas on a larger venue like the Lyceum. Innovation is my brand. With the sidebars, I felt like there wasn’t a tremendous amount of “design” to do. It didn’t seem like there was going to be enough room for me to shine and put my signature touch on the event.
This particular sidebar was a photography studio and art space called The Lumenhouse located on 47 Beaver Street off of Flushing (Bushwick). The Lumenhouse is run by a great couple that is totally in to making and supporting art in Brooklyn. Their gorgeous baby girl (worthy of her own photo shoot) rounds out this pleasant pair. We got along great (as expected) and had a blast screening on Friday June 6 and Saturday June 7. The Bushwick Arts Festival was happening simultaneously so there was a mix of art and film aficionados mixing it up. We played shorts both days and a documentary Saturday night. The husband + wife team had the place looking very foxy and most of the filmmakers showed up to discuss their work. So in the end, I learned to let my ego and creative genius take a back seat to what was already well designed from the jump – a hip place to watch good film and celebrate filmmakers. In hindsight, designing for a film festival can be a lot like playing an Oscar-worthy supporting role, not the lead.
Levi Abrino - Director of The Lonely Bliss of the Cannonball Luke
(c) kamau ware 2008