Summer Centered: Four Fords Jump Into The Pool Movie
The inaugural class of Tuttle Summer Arts Lab fellows spent this summer working on a film project with Visual Media Scholar Vicky Funari.
Lots of people spent this past summer in the pool or at the movies, but four Fords spent these past few hot months on "The Pool Movie Project." The multiplatform documentary, by HCAH Visual Media Scholar Vicky Funari and supported by Emerging Artist in Residence Hilary Brashear ’13, is about older women, water, exercise, and community, and documents the final year of an aquacise class at a small, local YMCA before the branch closed its doors forever.
The work of those four Fords was sponsored by the John B. Hurford '60 Center for the Arts and Humanities’ Tuttle Creative Programs. This summer marked the first of a three-year pilot program of Tuttle Summer Arts Labs that will build on film-focused work of the Interdisciplinary Documentary Media Fellowships of the past two summers, which resulted in documentaries about co-op businesses and the effects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf.
This year's fellows—Harlow Figa '16, Nick Gandolfo-Lucia '16, Sarah Moses '16, and Marcelo Jauregui-Volpe '18—worked with the lead artists, the women in the film, and advisors in assisting with the design of the project. In addition, they helped lay the groundwork for a related community engagement campaign to promote healthy aging.
For many of the fellows one of the best parts of the fellowship was having the opportunity to work with Funari, with whom they had already taken documentary classes.
“I have long admired her work, approaches, and methods, and being able to work with her outside of taking one of her courses has been a wonderful opportunity,” says Figa.
“Vicky inspired me to pursue this, as she is the only documentary film professor at Haverford,” says Gandolfo-Lucia. “The courses I have taken with her were uniquely difficult and inspiring, so I very much wanted a chance to work on her film.”
“I knew I had to apply, because the fellowship revolved around Vicky’s film,” says Jauregui-Volpe. “I gained so much from her courses and believed I could continue this growth through this opportunity. I also really believe in Vicky and her work, and want to help her out in any way I can.”
The young filmmakers also appreciated the opportunity to expand their own filmmaking abilities and getting to know the community the film explores. The aqua class served senior citizens, ages 60 to 90, and, says Figa, “they have a lot to teach us through their stories.”
Moses notes how the women who were subjects in the film spent the summer “thinking about and working on how best to give this film a life beyond the screen, both as an educational tool and a tool for community engagement.”
“They have all been fun, loving, wise people, and working with them has been beyond rewarding,” she says.
-Jamauri Bowles ’17
“Summer Centered” is a series exploring our students’ Center-funded summer work.