NYSCA Grant for Development of New Film in 2022!
I am thrilled to announce that I have received a $10,000 New York State Council on the Arts Grant towards the development phase PAULINA/The Promise-- my first foray into film, and the next/final evolution of the Paulina project, incorporating a new and personal chapter.
In 2018, I went to Poland for nine months to investigate the 1945 wartime testimony of Paulina Hirsch, a Polish Jewish woman (and supposed relative) who survived on her own throughout Nazi-occupied Poland. The heart of the investigation was a road trip retracing Paulina's wartime path with my Polish counterpart, Patrycja Dołowy—a Polish-Jewish writer/artist/midwife to unborn stories. Our plans went beautifully off-track when a series of errors led to a seemingly impossible confrontation with the dead. In this moment of existential reckoning between life and death, a promise was made...
It is time to fulfill the promise.
Paulina/The Promise comes from an exploration of memory, displacement, and intergenerational trauma/healing, through a lens of motherhood. From 2017-2020, it existed as an evolving performance-in-process (and in life) as the story continued to unfold. In 2019, it became a collaboration with Patrycja Dołowy as we worked to share the incredible story of our journey following Paulina together, thanks to the support of Asylum Arts, POLIN Museum of the History of Polish Jews, The Emmanuel Ringelblum Jewish Historical Institute (Archive and Genealogy), Festivalt, U.S. Embassy Warsaw, Kana Theater, and numerous other institutions and individuals. Iterations of work-in-progress have been presented in New York, Prague, Krakow, Warsaw, Szczecin, and streaming online (thank you, Kathleen Amshoff, who directed our final one!)
Paulina/The Promise is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of the Office of the Governor and the New York State Legislature. It is a fiscally sponsored project of the New York Foundation of the Arts