As an artist I love to explore complex issues in unorthodox ways. My previous work founding The Webby Awards allowed me to look at the internet and it’s effect on society for a decade. My films, Life, Liberty & The Pursuit of Happiness (Sundance 2003) looked at reproductive rights in America and The Tribe (Sundance 2006) explored cultural identity in the 21st Century. My feature documentary Connected (Sundance 2011) tackled the subject of interdependence.
Through its 11 city theatrical tour, festival and corporate screenings, and American Film Showcase tour with the US State Department, Connected has helped create a global conversation about what it means to be connected in the 21st century. I hope people will explore this subject on a personal and global level. I believe that by engaging people to talk about connectedness in their own lives and in the world, the ripple effect of these conversations will have far reaching impact for good that will creates lasting change.
While the idea that everything is connected is not new, the world today is more complex and interdependent than ever –and we, as a species have evolved to created tools that connect us in many new ways. And yet it seems difficult for us rise above and see how the major issues of our day are interlinked.
My short film series, Let it Ripple: Mobile Films for Global Change, takes off where Connected leaves off. Dissecting the ideas and subjects covered in Connected a bit further. The films speak to the highest meaning of being human, and are all created collaboratively with people around the world through a new kind of filmmaking we call Cloud Filmmaking. We often view the economy, healthcare, the environment, human rights independently, but this series aims to help nonprofits see the interdependence in their important work through an ever-expanding network. The films in this series are all available for free customization for any nonprofit working around the world to create a positive change.
I believe people are ready to rethink what interdependence means in the 21st Century–exploring both the good and the difficult issues this connectedness creates. I appreciate this is a huge subject and concept. I employ many tactics to pry open and untangle ideas in my work: humor, animation, archival and my own personal story— wielding a large magnifying glass to look at some of the absurd and beautiful behaviors of our species and our world. I believe a new zeitgeist is emerging. My work hopes to capture it.