FILMMAKER SELECTION PANEL
Richa is an award-winning NYC-based filmmaker from India. Her first short film, TAAZA KHOON (FRESH BLOOD), screened at the 49th Nashville Film Festival and won 7 awards across 27 film festivals eventually picking up distribution by Shorts TV India. Her latest film THE SEAL won the 2019 Future of Film is Female grant and is beginning its festival journey. She has also directed a short poetry film for 2019 Visible Poetry Project.
Richa’s scripts have placed in Oscar-qualifying festivals such as HollyShorts Film Festival, Nashville Film Festival and received accolades from ScreenCraft Film Fund and Shore Scripts Film Fund. Her film writings have appeared on Static Mass Emporium, a UK-based independent film publication.
Richa is a strong proponent for increasing diversity in storytelling and serves as the Vice President of Development for NYC Women Filmmakers, a non-profit organization dedicated to supporting women in film. More at www.richarudola.com
Born in 1979 in Paris, France, Elsa has worked as an assistant for renowned directors Raoul Ruiz, Mathieu Amalric, Noémie Lvovsky, Emmanuel Finkiel, and Bertrand Bonello among others, and as an actress and director.
Pearl (2019), her first feature film, was selected in many festivals around the world (Venice Film Festival, European Film Festival of Seville, Tribeca,…) and released in many European countries. She directed a short for VPP collection « Untertitled » from Cornelia Travnicek ’s poetry. She is know working on her new feature.
Rebecca Shapass is a filmmaker, multidisciplinary artist, and community organizer based in her native NYC. She works at the intersection of moving-image, installation, and performance to deconstruct traditional narratives surrounding femininity and womxnhood through the study of personal and collective memory.
Rebecca has exhibited & screened with institutions and festivals including Microscope Gallery (Brooklyn, NY), Anthology Film Archives (New York, NY), Open Signal (Portland, OR), Puffin Cultural Forum (Teaneck, NJ), Artifact Film Festival (Canada), amongst others.
In 2018-19, Rebecca was a part of Smack Mellon’s Artist Studio Program where she was also a NY Community Trust Van Lier Fellow. Previously, she has been a resident at NURTUREart and Signal Culture. In Fall 2019, she will join Crosstown Arts (Memphis, TN) for a three-month Film and Video Residency. She is a graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts where she studied Film & TV and Art History.
Josh Philip Saunders
Josh Philip Saunders is a London-based filmmaker with a Master’s degree in Animation from the Royal College of Art. His debut short film The Grey Hound won the Royal Television Society Award and was played at a variety of international film festivals. In his work Josh invites his own brand of magic realism to seep through when reality is stretched most thinly like the flash of an odd shape in you peripheral on a long drive.
POETRY SELECTION PANEL
Steffan Triplett is a Black, queer writer and educator from Joplin, Missouri. He received his MFA from the University of Pittsburgh and is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis where he was a John B. Ervin Scholar. Some of Steffan's work can be found in Longreads, Electric Literature, DIAGRAM, Fence, Nepantla: An Anthology Dedicated to Queer Poets of Color (Nightboat Books 2018), and the forthcoming Revisiting the Elegy in the Black Lives Matter Era (Routledge 2020). Steffan has been a fellow for Callaloo and Lambda Literary and his work has been nominated for Best of the Net, the Pushcart Prize, and was the winner of the Brutal Nation Prize in Prose. His manuscript-in-progress was Shortlisted for the 2019 Tarpaulin Sky Book Awards.
Kelli Russell Agodon
Kelli Russell Agodon is the cofounder of Two Sylvias Press where she works as an editor and book cover designer. Her most recent book, Hourglass Museum, was a finalist for the Washington State Book Awards and shortlisted for the Julie Suk Poetry Prize. Her second book, Letters from the Emily Dickinson Room was the winner of the Foreword Indies Book of the Year for poetry and was also a finalist for the Washington State Book Awards. She coauthored The Daily Poet: Day-By-Day Prompts for Your Writing Practice, with poet Martha Silano and is the Co-Director of Poets on the Coast. Her next collection of poems will be published by Copper Canyon Press in 2021. www.agodon.com / www.twosylviaspress.com
Founder of the Bowery Poetry Club and the author of 17 poetry collections (print/audio/video), most recently The Cutouts (Matisse) (PeKaBoo Press) and Sing This One Back To Me (Coffee House Press), Bob Holman has taught at Princeton, Columbia, NYU, Bard, and The New School. As the original Slam Master and a director at the Nuyorican Poets Cafe, creator of the world's first spoken word poetry record label, Mouth Almighty/Mercury, and the Artistic Director of the Bowery Poetry Club, Holman has played a central role in the spoken word, slam and digital poetry movements of the last several decades, work that continues with the founding of Bowery Poetry Studios, where he hosts the poetry podcast "Mouth Almighty." A co-founder and co-director of the Endangered Language Alliance, Holman's study of hip-hop and West African oral traditions led to his current work with endangered languages. He is the producer/director/host of various films, including "The United States of Poetry" and "On the Road with Bob Holman," His film, "Language Matters with Bob Holman," winner of the Berkeley Film Festival's Documentary of the Year award, was produced by David Grubin and aired nationally on PBS. Holman traveled for the film and led workshops at language revitalization centers across Alaska and Hawaii, sponsored by the Ford Foundation. His short film, "Khonsay: Poem of Many Tongues," has lines of poetry in 50 languages, and premiered at the Margaret Mead Film Festival. In 2018, Holman was awarded the Chambra d'Oc Premio Ostana Award for his work in language revitalization. His roots are in Harlan, KY, and he currently lives on the Bowery in New York City.
Luisa A. Igloria
Luisa A. Igloria is one of 2 Co-Winners of the 2019 Crab Orchard Poetry Open competition for her manuscript Maps for Migrants and Ghosts (forthcoming from Southern Illinois University Press in 2020). In 2015, she was the inaugural winner of the Resurgence Prize (UK), the world's first major award for ecopoetry, selected by former UK Poet Laureate Sir Andrew Motion, Alice Oswald, and Jo Shapcott. Former US Poet Laureate Natasha Trethewey selected her chapbook What is Left of Wings, I Ask as the 2018 recipient of the Center for the Book Arts Letterpress Poetry Chapbook Prize. Other works include The Buddha Wonders if She is Having a Mid-Life Crisis (Phoenicia Publishing, Montreal, 2018), Ode to the Heart Smaller than a Pencil Eraser (2014 May Swenson Prize, Utah State University Press), and 12 other books. She is a Louis I. Jaffe Endowed Professor and University Professor of English and Creative Writing, and teaches on the faculty of the MFA Creative Writing Program at Old Dominion University, which she directed from 2009-2015. www.luisaigloria.com
Dustin Pearson is the author of Millennial Roost (C&R Press, 2018) and A Family Is a House (C&R Press, 2019). He is a McKnight Doctoral Fellow in Creative Writing at Florida State University. The recipient of fellowships from Cave Canem, the Bread Loaf Writers' Conference, and the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing, Pearson has served as the editor of Hayden’s Ferry Review and a Director of the Clemson Literary Festival. He won the Academy of American Poets Katharine C. Turner Prize and John Mackay Graduate Award and holds an MFA from Arizona State University. His work appears in Blackbird, Vinyl Poetry, Bennington Review, TriQuarterly, [PANK], Fjords Review, and elsewhere.