Pioneers: Social Commentary

Footage shot by Zora Neale Hurston and the first Chinese-American film are showcased in this program exploring how pioneering women filmmakers dealt with the social conditions of the early 1900s.
Pioneers: Social Commentary

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USA, 116 minutes, Digital

Distributor: Kino Lorber

Amy Johanson of Baltimore Women’s Media Alliance (BWMA) will host the 12/4 screening.

BWMA is a group for female-identifying mediamakers in the Baltimore area. Our mission is to support one another’s creative projects and advocate for equity and inclusivity in our field via panels, screenings and workshops.



Program Notes

Short Feature Film:
Bread

Director: Ida May Park
1918 • USA • 60 MIN • Silent

Though a neglected figure today, director Park had a successful and prolific career at Universal. This socially engaged drama follows the fate of a woman struggling to pull herself out of poverty as she’s ruthlessly exploited by a string of men.


Short Film: (Pictured)
Curse of Quon Gwon

Director: Marion E. Wong
1916 • USA • 36 MIN • Silent

Produced and directed by one-time filmmaker Marion E. Wong, the very first Chinese-American feature — of which two reels survive — deals with assimilation via the story of an ancient curse that strikes a Chinese-American family as its members become westernized.


Short Film:
Fieldwork Footage

Director: Zora Neale Hurston
1929 • USA • 10 MIN • Silent

The singular writer and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston captured this rare documentary look at early-20th-century black Southern life, which features footage of Cudjo Lewis, the last known survivor of the Atlantic slave trade.


Short Film:
When Little Lindy Sang

Director: Lule Warrenton
1916 • USA • 10 MIN • Silent

Working within her own studio at Universal, director and actress Lule Warrenton specialized in films for and starring children, including this early treatment of racial prejudice about the only black girl in an otherwise white classroom.


Series sponsored by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation.


THE STAVROS NIARCHOS FOUNDATION PARKWAY IS LOCATED AT 5 W. NORTH AVE IN THE HEART OF BALTIMORE'S STATION NORTH
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