Mini TVE presentation with Third Horizon Media at the Miami Book Fair

On Monday, November 12th, 2018 Third Horizon Media, Miami, collaborated with the Fresh Milk led initiative Transoceanic Visual Exchange (TVE) to curate a small screening of a selection of video/film work by Caribbean artists as part of their contribution to the 2018 Miami Book Fair.

This mini edition of TVE featured work by Adam Patterson (Barbados), Rhea Storr (The Bahamas/UK), Sandra Vivas (Venezuela), Alberta Whittle (Barbados/UK), Nick Whittle (Barbados/UK) and Anisah Wood (Barbados).

Transoceanic Visual Exchange is a selection of video art by artists practicing in the Caribbean, the Pacific Islands and their diasporas. This edition of TVE was coordinated by The Fresh Milk Art Platform (Barbados) in partnership with Footscray Community Arts Centre (Melbourne, Australia) in 2017, with additional screenings taking place in collaboration with Deakin University (Melbourne, Australia) and Third Horizon Media (Miami, USA) in 2018.

Click here to see the PDF of the event program:

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About Third Horizon Media:

Third Horizon is a Miami-based Caribbean filmmaking collective and media company dedicated to capturing the sights and sounds of the Caribbean and the so-called “third world.” The collective’s projects have screened at festivals around the world, including Sundance, Toronto International (TIFF), International Film Festival Rotterdam and Sheffield Documentary Festival, among others.

The collective also stages the annual Third Horizon Film Festival, which aims to empower and celebrate fellow filmmakers and projects focused on the Caribbean, the Diasporas that formed it, and the Diasporas formed by it.

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About The Miami Book Fair:

The Miami Book Fair is an annual literary festival event realized in Miami by Miami Dade College.

The fair, which has become a model for other fairs across the country, brings over 300 renowned national and international authors exhibitors to a weeklong celebration of all things literary and includes pavilions for translation, comics, children, and young adults.The mission of Miami Book Fair International is to promote reading, encourage writing, and heighten an awareness of literacy and the literary arts in the city’s multi-ethnic community.The eight-day book festival has draws hundreds of thousands of book lovers to downtown Miami each November for a festival of all things read and written.

FRESH MILK X

Video shot and edited by Sammy Davis

FRESH MILK X was held this past Sunday, February 3rd 2013, featuring our most recent resident artist, Malaika Brooks-Smith-Lowe showcasing her new film created during her residency, with a guest performance by Yardie Boy Theatre’s Kupakwashe and actor/director Russell Watson.

Malaika’s film titled ‘Off Track, Moving Forward,’ was a collaboration with Barbadian actor and Managing Director of Mustardseed Productions Varia Williams, and delves into the whirlwind of non-stop thoughts that everyone copes with in daily life, and the possibilities of allowing ourselves to just ‘be’:

Within the context of a global culture of “progress,” this video piece (4:30 sec) poses questions about our internal landscapes, as we navigate this rushing stream of forward motion. In the midst of it all, we often find ourselves spinning in whirlpools of our own thinking: caught up in our past experiences and our potential future ones. What are the repercussions of denying ourselves the opportunity to cultivate a sense of completeness? How do we find satisfaction within the smallest moment, before running off on a trail of other thoughts?

 We are ‘doing’ all the time, often even when we think we are not. We are constantly consuming materials, ideas, other people and their perceptions, with a skilful ease. So ‘connected’ that it becomes easy to confuse solitude with loneliness or boredom. Even in the company of others we often fall under the deadening weight of our doubts, fear and anxiety. We keep ourselves occupied, thinking, but as we feel the familiar murkiness of negativity, what happens when we allow ourselves to pause, become aware and just sit with whatever arises… What are the possibilities then?Malaika Brooks-Smith-Lowe

Yardie Boy Theatre presented an excerpt from the play ‘Prisoner,’ also written by Kupakwashe:

Set in prison, John a convicted murderer is on death row being guarded by his older and unforgiving brother Winslow. A 25 minute play full of intensity, graphic in nature and volatile in words. Prisoner is a socio-political play that rides on the themes of ‘big brother is watching’ and ‘being a brother’s keeper.’

There were Q&A sessions held with all of the evening’s participants. As always, it was a pleasure for Fresh Milk to make new connections, and we will miss having Malaika’s presence and energy in the studio – but FRESH MILK X provided a fitting send off!

All Photographs © Dondré Trotman http://www.dondretrotman.com/

Reflection on Week 2 of the Fresh Milk residency by Malaika Brooks-Smith-Lowe

One of the most incredible aspects of this Fresh Milk residency is the solidarity. This past week not only have  I been able to engage with Annalee Davis, the Director, and Katherine Kennedy, Assistant-extraordiniare but also Holly Byone, Founder and Editor-In-Chief of ARC Magazine, was here collaborating on a grant proposal. The internet offers endless opportunities to build connections but there is something invaluable about sharing physical space with these dynamic women, who are each wells of knowledge and experience. In the midst of all the work that each of us was engaged in, we were able to find moments of pause (and venting and laughter) together. In a world that is focused on productivity, but also requires so much time out of us in order to manifest sustainable change, it can be so easy to downplay the value of taking the time to enjoy the company of the people who help to keep us going.

It has also been a blessing to collaborate with Varia Williams, a brilliant actor and Managing Director of Mustardseed Productions, as the character in the film that I’ve been creating while here in Barbados. I am not sure that I can even begin to articulate what the process of working with Varia has been like. We fell into a really natural rhythm, connecting to the film’s concept in unique ways that often overlapped. I started with an idea and went into a way more experimental direction, which only an actor with her ability to work in a more subtle and bodily way, could have carried. It has truly been a collaboration, her experience as an actor and her vibrant energy brought elements to the process that I couldn’t have conceived.

At some point before arriving here, I was considering what type of project to work on during this residency and set my sights on a narrative short film. As anyone who has ever proposed a project of any kind knows… things rarely go as planned. The more people responded to my initial concept the more I wanted to create a piece that was open and allowed people to interpret it in a way that spoke directly to their experience and so, started to feel myself drawn away from the narrative I had begun to create. Of course, openness is possible within the plot of a narrative. In fact this was recently demonstrated in the Fresh Milk space at Saturday night’s screening of A Hand Full of Dirt. Director, Russell Watson, and Producer, Lisa Harewood, engaged questions after the film and spoke about the ways that plot has connected with people across the globe in diverse audiences. As I watched the film for the first time that evening, I was struck by the nuanced way that they were able to weave together an engaging story that touched on so many things that were both unique to a Caribbean experience but also experienced in similar ways by other people as well: migration, corruption, tourism, masculinity, property ownership and cycles of violence, just to name a few. It was wonderful that an audience of people, who were mostly at Fresh Milk for the first time, were able to talk with the filmmakers afterwards about their own experiences of the film.

As for my piece, I’ve jumped head first into the pool of the experimental. Shooting is complete and the quality is incredible thanks to the equipment I rented through Andrew Jemmott at Caribbean Webcast. Now it is all about editing.

Follow Malaika on Instagram @malaikabsl