By Kennedy Tavares
As a tribute to the late Dr. Isabel Arredondo, SUNY Plattsburgh’s Center for Interdisciplinary and Area Studies is putting together “Viewpoints: The Plattsburgh Film Forum,” a collection of short films created by students and special guests. The showing will be Oct. 22 at the Strand Theater. Tickets will be free to all attendees.
Arredondo was an associate professor of foreign languages and literature at the college who died in August. Arredondo, with the help of SUNY Plattsburgh’s English professor Michael Devine, helped bring the Interdisciplinary Film minor to campus seven years ago. They became good friends during that time.
Kodak Super 8 film is a popular camera film used for motion pictures. Arrendondo took particular interest in independent filmmakers from around the world who used Super 8 for their projects. Arrendondo interviewed artists in over 20 countries worldwide, thus inspiring the film forum in her honor.
The event was curated by Devine, who also runs the Center for Interdisciplinary and Area Studies.
The film forum is an extension of the Center for Interdisciplinary and Area Studies’s “HUMAN (viewpoints)” project. The “HUMAN” project is about exploring the world as a collective and attempting to bring together not just campus, but community in a new way.
In 2021, the Strand Center had a project titled “HUMAN (flow),” which featured events with professionals, students and faculty.
“The events were in art museum spaces, with immersive multimedia environments. Five speakers, five minutes each. The idea is fresh perspectives, cool locations like the Strand and something that brings together depth, fun, and togetherness. The Film Forum continues that,” Devine said.
The forum will feature 20 short films created by students, past and present, as well as people in the community and special guests.
Eve K. Tremblay is a special guest whose work will be shown at the forum. Tremblay is a filmmaker who has had their work featured in popular museums in Canada. Museums including, the National Museum of Fine Arts of Quebec, The Museum of Contemporary Art in Montreal and the Bergen Kunsthall.
A film from recent SUNY Plattsburgh graduate of 2019, Anthony Scalzo, will be played at the event. Scalzo, a TV and Video Production major, has become an independent filmmaker and writer since graduating.
Devine isn’t the only one looking forward to the show. Fine arts senior William Tenezaca has already marked the date on his calendar.
“I heard about the forum in class and I thought it was interesting. I always try to support artists on campus, from one artist to another,” Tenezaca said.
Devine is hoping that attendees can gain more than just discovering new filmmakers.
“The Forum is about opening our eyes — open not only to film, but to what students can do and to Plattsburgh. It’s important to know where you are in life, in every sense of the word. Will you live in a town and never truly see it? Film, I think, can help,” Devine said.