ABOUT

The Antiracist Classroom

is a student-led organization at the Art Center College of Design focused on counteracting racism and white supremacy in design education and practice.



We aim to cultivate a space for students who want to find, create, and engage in opportunities for student activism around issues of racism and white supremacy in the classroom and in design practice. We also offer space for faculty members and staff to be allies and resources to their students, especially students-of-color who encounter racism in the classroom / in their experience as designers.

ICYMI ︎ REPRESENT: Power in Color At least 100 folks joined us to celebrate with the 21 students and alumni of color who contributed work. Check out the photos from the event and info on contributing creatives here.



ICYM I︎ Reconstructing Practice

Reconstructing Practice brought over 100 participants to Art Center’s Wind Tunnel on July 13 - 14 for sessions, fellowship, and a gallery opening. Check out the video below or the book here.



CONTACT  
antiracistclassroom@gmail.com

︎  ︎  ︎







We’re extremely proud to announce our official 2019 film selections for Represent Film Festival!

‪We’d like to extend a big thank you to the 100+ talented filmmakers from around the globe that were involved in submitting for our call for work this past July. You made us cry, you made us laugh, but most importantly, you made us feel seen. We look forward to sharing your stories with the world.

Represent Film Festival with be hosted on October 5th 2019 at Downtown Independent in Los Angeles, California. To purchase tickets for the festival, visit this link

Animation Screening 
11:30AM



Lazy Day

Alicia Robinson, New Jersey
Runtime: 6:46
Based on real life events, Lazy Day tells the story of how music influences the relationship between a tired dad and his energetic 5 year old daughter.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“My film focuses on the relationship between a black father and his daughter. In the media, black fathers are mostly depicted as absent or never shown spending time with their kids and that was a certain stereotype I wanted to diminish within the film. This film also deals with 9/11, an event that is often tied to islamaphopia. I wanted to shift that narrative to how it affected the families rather than hate propaganda, which is usually the case for many 9/11 involved films”


Re-Gifted

Eaza Shukla, India
Runtime: 2:15
A decorative object struggles to lead a meaningful existence as it gets stuck in the cycle of re-gifting.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“We often let the way others perceive us affect how we view ourselves. The film attempts to shift the narrative towards the importance of seeking within ourselves what makes us special, rather than waiting for outside validation.”


Idyll

Shana Dixon, New Jersey
Runtime: 4:59
A mother moth finds a magical garden.

How does your film shift the narrative? “Idyll is the relationship between mother and daughter, while a mother struggles through addiction. I made the moth addicted to nectar rather than a human person because this way more people can relate to the story through their own experiences.”


Cosmos Express

Mocong Yuan, China
Runtime: 6:35
A girl decides to leave this world. Her body and soul have one last conversation as she walks through the path she has been for one last time.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“It has a cultural view of the suicidal topic and uses the Chinese language metaphorically with different culture background subtext.”



Save The Date!

Mari Carlson, California
Runtime: 4:20
"Save The Date!" is an animated music video celebrating the beauty of romantic love between women. Please join our protagonist Bunny, a disorganized but loving rabbit, as she zips across town to propose to her girlfriend Poppy.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“This film was a passion project and my goal was to create a film that was made by and for LGBTQ individuals. I wanted to change the cultural perception of queer relationships and show that they could be sweet, loving, and appropriate for all ages.“


Do You Remember the Sun on the Green Horizon?

Leili Arai Tavallaei, Texas
Runtime: 3:44
How do you remember something so precious yet so far from reach? And how do you cope with the realization you're forgetting pieces of it? Do You Remember the Sun on the Green Horizon is the unending and paradoxical search for adolescence as we grow older.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“Am I Enough?’ is an experimental animation about imposter syndrome. As someone who identifies as mixed race, I fall into a racially ambiguous category where my identity is constantly being challenged. I am neither fully Iranian, nor Japanese, and though I’m white passing to POC with darker complections I’m neither fully accepted by nor benefited from the white majority. ‘Am I Enough?’ takes place in a single moment, a repeatable, cyclical moment, that grapples with the emotional flood of uncertainty and acceptance that I myself experience everyday.“


Taku & Mama

Clarisse Chua, Singapore
Runtime: 4:32
A story about a boy, born with a strange appearance, and his busy mother.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“The film tells the story about a boy, born with the appearance of a monster and his mother. Before facing the discrimination of the people outside, he must first accept and understand himself.”


Kaeru

Denise Chan, California
Runtime 5:38
"Kaeru" is a 2-D animated short film about a darkroom photographer named Mitsuko who struggles with self-doubt. She has to rediscover her love for art and remember why she started making it in the first place.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“Kaeru is about a photographer named Mitsuko who struggles with self-doubt. In the film, photography represents viewing the world through a lens. When your self-perception is negative, everything becomes ugly and distorted, the way that Mitsuko’s photos do in the film. As kids, we don’t worry about how our artwork turns out. We aren’t as scared about the way our work is perceived, or the way it reflects on our identity. The message of the film is that we should remember the way we viewed the world as kids— not through the many filters of self-doubt that society puts on us as we grow up, but with the carefree perspective of a child just making art to have fun. Creativity is universal and at its best when it’s boundary-less.“


My Other Half

Chantal Feitosa, New York City
Runtime 3:02
Living between the United States and Brazil, a white mother and her biracial daughter share very different views on what it means to shape and preserve identity across family generations.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“My Other Half merges techniques in animation, collage, and live action to discuss the complexities of shaping identity in U.S. as a biracial, first-generation Brazilian immigrant. I am deeply invested in creating works that are not only autobiographical but that also capture the essence of the many women of my life who have left a lasting impression on my experiences and development as bi-continental woman. I believe that narratives like the ones told through “My Other Half” are essential to uplifting the voices of the growing number of multicultural and non-white individuals in America—especially the ones who currently struggle to attain a sense of agency over their own bodies and future histories.


Hero

Yu Jen Chen, Taiwan
Runtime: 6:25
As an Asian girl, there are many fears of living in New York. The protagonist in my story falls into a parallel world of New York, facing all the monsters that represent my fear and negative thoughts. After the journey, the protagonist started to change what she thinks about other people and herself, she knows she defeat her fear, the monsters, every day, therefore, she is braved enough to be considered a hero.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“Although I don't want people to read it, the characters on all the signs are real, but are in a font, Zhuyin, only used in Taiwan. That font was invented after Japan lost WW2, and was based on Japanese characters, so it is easier for Taiwanese people to understand. I used Zhuyin to show my identity because this is a story of me leaving Taiwan and coming to New York. For my story, an egret (which I named Phegret) comes and flies Ansa back to the real world. Egrets are often seen in Taiwan and rainy is common weather in Taiwan. Therefore in New York, every time it's rainy I think of my home and feel calmer. Also, there is a popular oldies dialect song in Taiwan called "The Dark Day". The song reminds us of being brave when we are in difficulties.“


Someday

Lubna Abdein, Missouri
Runtime: 2:44
A young girl overcomes an obstacle in order to fulfill her dreams of becoming a dancer.

How does your film shift the narrative? “My film deals with a young south asian girl dreaming of dance. The whole dance in an abstract piece dedicated to honoring the beauty of the south asian dance style. Not only does it deal with dance and culture, but it also appeals to a whole other disabled audience.“

WORKSHOP: Animating with Chaz Bottoms

12:30 PM



Chaz Bottoms

Cleveland, Ohio
www.chazbottoms.com
Chaz Bottoms is an award winning director and animator based in Los Angeles, CA. Originally from Cleveland Ohio, Chaz holds a BFA in Animation from DePaul University in Chicago, IL. He is the owner of CBA Studios, an indpendet remote animation studio that specializes in short films, music video, and narrative content. Our work has appeared in Rolling Stone, Toonboom , AfroPunk , Vibe Magazine , ImFromCleveland.com and Saint Heron. He has worked with musical artists such as Chip tha Ripper, Quentin Miller, Rhetorik, Hit­Boy, TeaMarrr, and Lorine Chia. Additionally, his short films have premiered globally, winning multiple awards. His 2016 he film Introvert was apart of Season 6 of ABFF Independent and is currently airing on AspireTV. His 2017 film All Kids Go to Hell has premiered at Cannes, Cleveland International, on ToonBoom and AfroPunk and was featured in an Art Gallery during Summer 2018 in Taiwan. In 2018 he co-­directed The Indies: An Animated Short , a film that raised $50,000 on Kickstarter to produce, which premiered at CTNExpo 2019.

How do you shift the narrative?”Shifting the narrative to me means progressing the industry and creating opportunities that currently aren't there. Having an independent animation studio, I work with a wide variety of diverse creators to bring their stories to life. Our studio highlights black and brown studios and characters from all walks of life.”

Documentary Screening
2:00PM




GIRLS

Kiki Shervington-White, The United Kingdom
Runtime: 5:38
GIRLS is a documentary based on the experiences of Black Women and Girls living in the UK. Through private conversations and camera observations, this short film captures and explores the paradox of what it means, as Black Women Girls, to indeed 'be' ourselves in the context of British society.

How does your film shift the narrative? “This project is quite a personal response to how I have felt not only during my university journey, but throughout the many institutions, and spaces I’ve moved through, throughout my life.“


MACROCOSM

INV4DER, California
Runtime: 7:58
A short Allegorical film directed, shot and edited by INV4DER focusing on the Oakland Art community and what it means to be part of something larger than yourself.

How does your film shift the narrative? “MACROCOSM shifts the narrative of my own cultural heritage by focusing on the importance of being apart of something much larger than yourself through the shared power of creation. As a Bay area native and POC it was important to me to be able to create a film that captured the true spirt of the artistic community that I grew up with that I was beginning to see die as gentrification began to take hold. In this sense this idea of capturing became my way of proving my community existed even if the narrative of Oakland as strong hold for revolutionaries for POC changed.“


The Ones Who Bought Buschwick

Educational Video Center, New York City
Runtime: 22:30
A group of 13 youth from around New York City set out to explore gentrification and its effects on residents, businesses, and the culture of Bushwick, Brooklyn. First-time filmmakers tell the story of Josefina and her family, who lived in Bushwick but were forced to sell their building and bodega and move to East New York, because of rising costs. To help tell the story, Youth Producers talk to a range of experts and community members to find the history of Bushwick and the context of urban change in New York City.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“This film explores how the MTA disenfranchises communities of color as well as people with disabilities and the poor.”


A Beautiful Presence

Luisa Betancur, Colombia
Runtime: 9:39
A Beautiful Presence is a series of environmental portraits. It is an exploration of the impact a place has on a person and vice versa. The process of shooting these portraits became so much about the conversations around the place and its influence on the people that were being photographed that Lester decided to make short documentaries to accompany the portraits.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“The people that i interview are people like me and they represent viewpoints and perspectives that everyone can see.“


Translucent

Azzan Quick, North Carolina
Runtime: 16:38
Translucent, a short film, is a self portrait of Azzan stumbling their way through self discovery. Using compelling conceptual scenes and verite footage, Azzan documents their struggles and triumphs exploring their own gender identity and figuring out unapologetic ways to explain it to friends and family. As Azzan moves into the notion of being comfortable in their own skin, the people around them deal with the cognitive dissonance of my change. They compare this moment to a funeral, meaning the people involved in their life are slowly having to mourn the person they perceived Azzan as for the person they actually are.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“My film is a self portrait about my journey through identity. It shows my evolution to identifying myself as a trans non-binary person of color and how I’ve tried to unapologetically navigate through that while dealing with traditional family and friends in the south.”


EAST: A Relationship

Noor Khan, Canada
Runtime: 2:24
'EAST': A Relationship is primarily a short film about how an individual's relationship with people shaped her relationship with the land. The logo reads, 'EAST' alif / ya / seen / tah, in Arabic kulfic script. EAST, is where she comes from, the Middle East and South Asia, and it is also her location in relation to Toronto, i.e. Scarborough. Her relationship to EAST, both locations, have impacted her social standing, and social community. Through voice-over, she communicates the crisis of having been robbed of a homeland, while also settling and being complicit of the destruction of the home of Indigenous peoples. The heavy imagery of graveyards depicts the years in her life where she lost key members of her family. While burying them in the ground, she realized that her responsibility as a settler was critical, since there was no return home for herself and her community. EAST is a letter to her South Asian community to try to part from the past, and look at our current lives, where we (need to learn to) share the land.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“EAST: A Relationship is primarily a short film about how an individual's relationship with people shaped her relationship with the land. The logo reads, 'EAST' alif / ya / seen / tah, in Arabic kulfic script. EAST, is where she comes from, the Middle East and South Asia, and it is also her location in relation to Toronto, i.e. Scarborough. Her relationship to EAST, both locations, have impacted her social standing, and social community. Through voice-over, she communicates the crisis of having been robbed of a homeland, while also settling and being complicit of the destruction of the home of Indigenous peoples. The heavy imagery of graveyards depicts the years in her life where she lost key members of her family. While burying them in the ground, she realized that her responsibility as a settler was critical, since there was no return home for herself and her community. EAST is a letter to her South Asian community to try to part from the past, and look at our current lives, where we (need to learn to) share the land.”

WORKSHOP: Documentary Filmmaking  Brittney Janae

3:05 PM


Brittney Janae

St Louis, MO
www.brittneyjanae.com

Brittney is a photographer, videographer and video editor based in Los Angeles, CA. Originally from St. Louis Missouri, She is the Co-Founder of LoreneJanae , a makeup and photography agency highlighting women of color. Brittney's passion stems from the desire to tell compelling and captivating stories. She believes that the beauty in everyones derives from their story and her goal is to show that through her gift in photography and videography. She focuses on creating digital branded content for influencers as well as small independent companies. She has been able to work with influencers such as Tiffany Haddish, Eve, Common, Jay Ellis, Jesse Williams, DL Hughley and Snoop Dogg and companies such as Shea Moisture, TV One, Issa Rae Productions and RCA Inspiration.  Her mission is to create films that tell the stories of people around her through their everyday struggles. What makes Brittney so unique is her clean aesthetic and her eye for capturing in such an emotional and powerful way. Her goal is to continue to uplift and inspire new filmmakers, more specifically black female filmmakers  by giving back through mentorship and creating a safe space to grow in this field, using her journey in filmmaking as a catalyst to show others that they can do it!

How do you shift the narrative? “Shifting the narrative means telling our own stories and having control over how our stories are being told in front of or behind the camera. I’ve shifted the narrative in my filmmaking process by really opening the door for black women and minorities in my community. I didn’t see many black women being represented in certain spaces and wanted to change that. I started Black Women Create to allow people to know that black women are here and we do create, whether you want to believe it or not and whether you want to give us the opportunity to or not. You will have no choice but to see us.”

Narrative Screening
4:30PM



Do Turtles Swim in Maple Syrup?

Paul Daniel-Torres, Canada
Runtime: 11:15
Robbed of a chance for a better life by a racist thug. Latin-Canadian teen Tony Tenorio is sent on a journey where he must decide between succumbing to racial stereotypes or fighting to become more.

How does your film shift the narrative? “This film is about the urban Coloured Canadian experience, something that's not touched upon. It's about the children of immigrants who balance the identity of their parents homeland and of the country they were born in. And the film making shows that through an eclectic pace and style inspired by multiculturalism.


Justice Delayed

Janine Anne Uyanga, California
Runtime: 11:31
Ten months after the fatal shooting of his younger 12-year-old brother, Jay discovers that the police officer involved was not indicted. Losing trust in the legal system, Jay takes matters into his own hands, however, is torn between seeking vengeance or justice.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“The black experience in America is much more complex than it is originally accredited to. To live in a land where people love your “culture,” but disregard your basic human rights is ironic. America’s paradoxical ideals leave black people feeling helpless because we are targeted for our skin color, yet the moment we speak up, we are deemed “hateful terrorists.” This leaves me, a young black woman to ask myself if I’m going to be a “terrorist?” or am I going to turn away, be silent and be complicit? I have noticed that recently the use of black lives on screen feed into a “trauma-porn” fetish where black pain is capitalized upon and the constant “injustice solved by protests” storyline has been overdone. What happens when the protests don’t do anything? What happens when you lose faith in the system? Lose hope. What do you do? I decided to shift that narrative and focus more on the impact of the injustices that are brought upon us. I find myself with our main character, Jay, stuck in the middle of this spectrum of Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcom X, both fighting for the same cause, but not knowing which approach will bring justice sooner. This mental battle of whether to strike back or not is a reality of the black experience. As a filmmaker, the strongest tool I have is my voice and I chose to shed light on the reality that I experience daily.he people that i interview are people like me and they represent viewpoints and perspectives that everyone can see.“


My Mother, Myself & I

King Yaw Soon, Malaysia
Runtime: 7:32
My Mother, Myself, and I is a Chinese coming-of-age short film consisting of four acts. Each act is a long take capturing the brief but intricate interaction between a single-mother and her son at the ages of 5, 10, 20, and 25 years old. These four mother-son moments offer a glimpse into their relationship and how it evolves across the years as they tread lightly on the issue of traditional Chinese family values and the social taboos of sexual infidelity and homosexuality.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“My Mother, Myself & I was inspired by my single-mother and my upbringing in South East Asia. I started writing it as a self-reflection on my Chinese culture and my mother’s love. The Chinese family culture, which is heavily influenced by the Confucian philosophy, emphasizes devotion to parents, emotional restraint, and authority. But where does love fit in to this ideology? Has love been sacrificed at the expense of Confucian ethics for centuries in Chinese families? A mother’s love is instinctual, unconditional, but it tends to be expressed very differently in a traditional Chinese family. It doesn’t consist of hugs or “I love you”. Words are constrained and sometimes it means shying away from the truth. Family members shield each other from the inconvenient truth and history in the name of love because we know how much the truth hurts. But what if that’s exactly the thing that pulls us apart? In this film, I explored the struggle of a son to behave in propriety in a traditional Chinese setting while coming to terms with the brokenness of his family, his mother’s unspoken love, and his own identity.“


What If Black Boys Were Butterflies?

DaeQuan Collier, New York City
Runtime: 3:38
While other boys can enjoy a childhood of freedoms, for many reasons, Black boyhood is a brief, complicated existence. WHAT IF BLACK BOYS WERE BUTTERFLIES?, is a non-linear experimental short film displaying what Black Boyhood is and what it ultimately could be.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“This film centers around an off-screen conversation between two black men after another black boy has been killed. As they reflect on the news, and as this conversation continues, they question what Black Boyhood is and what it ultimately could be.”


Tundra

Carol Nguyen, Montreal 
Runtime: 10:19
A mother struggles to cope with the loss of her missing daughter.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“Telling diverse stories without the conventions of Hollywood and the mainstream media.”


Mississippi River Princess

Camille Casmier, Missouri
Runtime: 19:18
Two black sisters journey south along the Mississippi River to save their family's home and reconnect to their spiritual roots.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“I wanted to make a film that reflected my own Creole background-- from the Gulf of Mexico, to New Orleans, up the Mississippi River to Saint Louis and Chicago. I was inspired by films like Daughters of the Dust, Toni Morrison's novel Song of Solomon, and Jesmyn Ward's recent novel, Sing Unburied Sing, that use ancient Voodoo to grapple with reconstructing a muddled heritage. Recently, my great-grandmother’s home in the New Orleans 9th ward, mostly destroyed in Katrina, was sold by distant relatives. I wanted this film to act as a literal gris-gris bag, saving bits and pieces of my own heritage through the use of home video footage, the performance of my real-life sister, and literally returning to our homeland and the only property my family has ever owned: the House on Spain Street. Creole people and our strange religion, language, and looks are often cast aside as ridiculous or mystical, but these are the deep traditions that I grew up with, and I wanted to make a film that took that heritage seriously, and that could be shared with my own children when they ask where they came from.“ne can see.“


Kids Don’t Ride Bikes Anymore

Ganeesh Genus, Florida
Runtime: 10:01
A comedic drama following Ant and Dana, a struggling couple in Queens. The two go on a journey in search of a pregnancy test to see if their little family is getting an extra member. From bodega to pharmacy, they discuss the ever-changing neighborhood and the prospects of their life if they’re expecting.

How does your film shift the narrative?
“In KIDS DON'T RIDE BIKES ANYMORE, we attempted to depict the "real" New York, and not the one you usually see in movies. The culturally diverse, working class New York and the people of color that live there and their plights.“

Q&A: A Conversation with Morgan Cooper

5:45 PM


Morgan Cooper

Kansas City, MO
www.morgancooperdp.com

Morgan Cooper is a Los Angeles-based writer, director, and cinematographer with a unique voice, clear vision, and a passion for every aspect of storytelling. Cooper’s influences range from fine art, jazz, and hip-hop, to the works of photographers Roy DeCarava and Gordon Parks. His Midwest roots and wide array of experiences growing up in Kansas City, Mo., also resonate throughout his work. Having traveled extensively as a commercial director/DP, Cooper is now focused on what he loves most: narrative filmmaking with substance and purpose; telling the stories of those who are unrepresented, underrepresented, and misrepresented in film. He is represented by CAA for television and film, and by Chromista for commercial work. Cooper approaches every project with positive energy, curiosity, empathy, and an open mind. He has an expressive lighting style that is exceptionally sensitive to skin tones. Cooper has taken several master classes offered by the American Society of Cinematographers, and wholeheartedly believes in the importance of life-long learning. Cooper is committed to combining art with purpose by using his voice as a filmmaker to positively impact society. He believes in giving back through service and mentorship, and currently coaches six aspiring filmmakers. When he looks back someday on his career, Cooper hopes he will have helped inspire the next generation of young black filmmakers to fearlessly tell their stories.

How do you shift the narrative?
“Shifting the narrative means breaking down barriers. I've shifted the narrative through my filmmaking process by creating fearlessly. Representation is everything, and it’s been amazing to inspire so many young people in my community to express themselves authentically through their art. When they see me and my work, they know that it’s possible for them to do the same, which is a beautiful feeling. Impact and inspiration mean everything to me, and my hope is that through my work more doors will be open for the next generation of storytellers in underrepresented communities.“

Ending Reception & Awards

7:00 PM - 9:00PM