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Fellows 2014-15

FSC-Radcliffe Fellows

Jennifer Bornstein

Mati Diop

Joao Pedro Rodrigues

Ben Rivers

Gardner Fellows

Matthew Porterfield

Athina Tsangari

FSC-Harvard Fellows

Luis Arnias

Aryo Danusiri

Alex Fattal

Laura Huertas Millan

Andrew Littlejohn

Peter McMurray

George Olken

Joana Pimenta

Benny Shaffer

Stephanie Spray

Maria Stenzel

Julia Yezbick

McMillan-Stewart Fellows

Mati Diop

Cheick  Oumar Sissoko


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Luis  Arnias (b. 1982) is a filmmaker from Venezuela who currently lives and works in Boston, MA. In 2009, he completed the diploma program at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

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Aryo Danusiri is a video artist and anthropologist born in Jakarta. His works have been featured at various film festivals and art galleries, including Yamagata, Rotterdam, Mead as well as Hause der Kulturen der Welt, Camera Austria and Ethnographic Terminalia. In his doctoral project in Social Anthropology with Critical Media Practice at Harvard, Danusiri has been working on the formation of Muslim working-class and  urban infrastructures in New York City and Jakarta. Lines is his current FSC project, exploring memory and subalterneity of Jakarta infrastructures: the roads, the rivers and the train tracks.

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Mati Diop is a filmmaker working in both France and Senegal. Her formally adventurous films explore exile and identity, memory and loss using fiction and documentary tools. Her most recent film, Mille soleils (A Thousand Suns) (2013), explores the intimate and collective heritage of her uncle Djibril Diop Mambéty's iconic film Touki Bouki (1973). The film won awards in several international film festivals, including the FID Marseille International Film Festival.

During her time as an FSC-Radcliffe Fellow, Diop is writing a feature film, Fire, Next Time, a gothic coming-of-age tale about the disenchanted youth of the 2000s in Dakar.

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Alex Fattal received his doctorate in Anthropology with a secondary field in Critical Media Practice in 2014 from Harvard University. His current project is an experimental feature length documentary on the lives of former guerrillas from the Revolutionary Armed Forces in Colombia. The piece is tentatively titled Dreams from the Concrete Mountain. Part of that project has been filmed in the payload of a truck transformed into a giant camera obscura. Alex's previous projects include Trees Tropiques and Disparando Cámaras para la Paz. You can learn more about his work here.

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Laura Huertas Millan is an artist and filmmaker exploring narrative through documentary fiction films, soundworks and creative writing. Her work has been shown internationally in contemporary art venues such as the Palais de Tokyo, la Villa Arson, the Annecy Castle, Barcelona's CCCB, LABORAL, MAC Santiago de Chile, MAMBO Colombia, Haus der Kulturen der Welt and Vienna's AwZ. Her films have also been screened in film festivals such as FIDMarseille, Curtas Vila do Conde, 25 FPS, Tampere, Antimatter, l'Alternativa, Rencontres Internationales Paris/Berlin/Madrid, Videobrasil biennale, Ficunam and more. She has been awarded fellowships and grants in support of her work from the French government (2001-2008), the City of Paris Production Grant (2010, 2014), the Colombian Film Development Fund (2013) and most recently was awarded at the Videobrasil festival (Resartis Residency Prize, 2013). She studied at the Beaux-Arts de Paris (Fine Arts School of Paris) and le Fresnoy. She is presently a PhD candidate at PSL University, affiliated with the Ecole Nationale Supérieure rue d'Ulm and the Beaux-Arts de Paris in France. She is also a visiting fellow at the Sensory Ethnography Lab, affiliated to the Social Anthropology Program in Harvard University.

La Ciudad de la Luz is part of an ongoing series of films dealing with the rise of modernism in Colombia and the mimicry of decadent foreign models. Linking together the present of an Amazonian militant woman with the past ruins of a parc in Bogota, the film will combine anthropology and fiction.

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Andrew Littlejohn is a filmmaker, phonographer and doctoral candidate in Social Anthropology, with a Secondary Field in Critical Media Practice. His current project, tentatively titled Iei (遺影), is a 16mm exploration of the disappearance of people and places during the tsunami of 2011, as well as the ambiguities of their materialization post-disaster as images.

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Peter McMurray is an ethnomusicologist and composer beginning a Mellon postdoctoral fellowship at MIT. His dissertation work focused on the Islamic acoustics of Turkish Berlin. He is currently working on a multichannel sound piece based on recordings from Berlin as well as a project on musical instrument makers in Turkey, Bosnia and Germany. He is also a Research Fellow at the Milman Parry Collection of Oral Literature, where he is beginning a project on sound technologies during World War II. 

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George Olken is a fifth year teaching assistant in VES. His project Daniel Wessius is an observational documentary about an observational documentary, namely Frederick Wiseman's Belfast, Maine (1999). It is also a portrait of the filmmaker's friend David Wessels, an itinerant homesteader in and around Belfast.

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Joana Pimenta works in film and video. She received her MA in Film and Visual Studies and Critical Media Practice from Harvard University, where she is a PhD candidate in the Department of Visual and Environmental Studies and a fellow at the Film Study Center. She is currently an MFA candidate at the Milton Avery School of the Arts at Bard College. Her work has been recently presented at the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts and the Graduate School of Design in the U.S., the Fundacion Botin in Spain, and Galeria da Boavista in Portugal. Her short film The Figures Carved into the Knife by the Sap of the Banana Trees recently received the award for Best Short Film in the National Competition at Indielisboa '14, where it premiered. She lives and works between Lisbon, Cambridge, MA and Brooklyn, NY.

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Matt Porterfield has written and directed three feature films, Hamilton (2006), Putty Hill(2011), and I Used To Be Darker (2013), all produced in Baltimore, Maryland. He teaches screenwriting, theory and film production at Johns Hopkins University and Maryland Institute College of Art. In 2012, Matt was a featured artist in the Whitney Biennial, a Creative Capital grantee, and the recipient of a Wexner Center Artists Residency. His work is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art and the Harvard Film Archive and has screened at Anthology Film Archives, BAM, Centre Pompidou, Walker Art Center, Cinémathèque Française, Northwest Film Forum and film festivals such as Sundance, the Berlinale, and SXSW. He is currently in production on a short film in Berlin.

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Benny Shaffer is a graduate student in Media Anthropology with a secondary field in Critical Media Practice. His current project, Elsewhere, combines film, video, and location audio recordings to explore senses of place and experiences of migration among popular performance troupes in southwest China. 

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Stephanie Spray is a filmmaker and PhD candidate in Anthropology at Harvard University. She has produced many works in the Sensory Ethnography Laboratory, including MANAKAMANA (2013, co-directed with Pacho Velez), As Long As There's Breath (2010), Monsoon-Reflections (2008) and Kāle and Kāle (2007). Her current FSC project Snow River will convey, in video and sound, how climate change is altering traditional practices and attitudes toward the land, and life more generally, in the Nepal Himalayas.

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Maria Stenzel is a freelance photojournalist who has covered the environment, science, and culture for National Geographic Magazine since 1991. Among other subjects, she has photographed migratory beekeepers in the United States; indigenous societies in Siberia, Kenya, Borneo, Bolivia and Mexico; and illegal logging in the Peruvian Amazon. Since 1995 Maria has regularly joined scientists on expeditions to Antarctica funded by the National Science Foundation. She was a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at MIT in 2012. Maria's current film project, The Difference Between Night and Day, explores the lives of blind children in India who receive cataract surgery, gaining sight for the first time. The children are subjects in a study conducted by Professor Pawan Sinha, a cognitive brain scientist at MIT.

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Julia Yezbick is a filmmaker, artist, and doctoral candidate in Social Anthropology (with Media) with a secondary field in Critical Media Practice. Her work addresses issues such as creative processes and artistic practice, labor and work, the body and the senses, and the ways in which "place" is experienced, constructed, and imagined. Her works have been screened at international film festivals including the Mostra Internacional do Filme Etnográfico, Rio de Janeiro, the Nordic Anthropological Film Association, Stockholm, and the Montreal Ethnographic Film Festival. She is the founding editor of Sensate, an online journal for experiments in critical media practice, and runs Mothlight Microcinema in Detroit, where she is currently conducting her dissertation research. 

Her current project, Manifest Destiny!, is an immersive docu-fiction collaboration with the Detroit-based performance ensemble, The Hinterlands, and filmmaker Ben Gaydos. This piece will use the history of the so-called "frontier" of the Wild West to thoughtfully address the fictions, struggles, realities, and utopic visions of contemporary Detroit. Based in part on a live performance of the same name created by The Hinterlands, this new work will paint a surrealist portrait of Detroit's real material and human landscapes while using the physical language and motifs of the Western to explore and subvert myths being circulated about the city in public discourse and ultimately comment upon American opportunism and Manifest Destiny in a post-industrial era.

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