The 60th annual Ann Arbor Film Festival (AAFF) kicks off on Tuesday, March 22, for a week of films and discussion. The Stamps School of Art & Design is proud to play prominent roles in this popular community event.
Professor Heidi Kumao represents the Stamps School by playing a key role at the AAFF, and describes the partnership between the Stamps School and the event. “The Stamps’ relationship with the film festival lasts at least 20 years. Dean Gunalan Nadarajan provides funding support for the festival that supports the Friday night animation screening, free tickets for screenings, and other guests that visit our classes,” she said. “I am the festival liaison for the school and help make the exchange happen by working with the festival director, Leslie Raymond, who is a Stamps alum.”
Kumao explains that as coordinator of Studio 4D, she arranges for every student to receive one free ticket to a single screening and provides additional complimentary tickets to members of the Stamps Community.
In addition to Kumao’s involvement, other faculty participated in the AAFF. Professor Andy Kirshner’s feature film about Henry Ford will be screening on Saturday in the main theater at 5:15 pm.
The Penny Stamps Speaker Series is part of the partnership, working with the film festival to coordinate the speaker for festival week. Lydia Lunch is this year’s special guest and will be featured as a speaker in an interview on Thursday, March 24, with Stamps alum Joseph Keckler. Keckler will also perform live at the festival on Saturday, March 26, at 7:15 pm in the main theater. Another Stamps alum, performance artist extraordinaire, Pat Oleszko, performs live on opening night on Tuesday, March 22, on the main stage at the Michigan Theater at 8:15 pm.
Stamps students are engaged with AAFF in a variety of ways. Student festival trailers will screen before each screening, and some student work curated by Kumao will be featured on screens in North Quad in the New Voices | College and University student work. Graduating MFA student Natalia Rocafuerte will show her work at the Michigan Theater as part of the festival’s “Off the Screen” series. BFA student, Madison Grosvenor, is an intern with the festival this year.
The AAFF runs through Sunday, March 27, 2022.