Union Gallery plans virtual showcase of student films

Gallery promotes artistic community through new online projects

The deadline to submit your short film is Oct. 19.
The Union Gallery is planning a virtual showcase of student films—promoting creativity, risk-taking, and poetic innovation in an effort to foster a sense of community between artists at Queen’s. 
The showcase is open for submissions to current Queen’s students and recent graduates until Oct. 19 for short films and visual projects under 10 minutes. 
In an interview with The Journal, Union Gallery Director Carina Magazenni and Curatorial Assistant Roy Zheng discussed the inspiration behind the upcoming showcase and the Gallery’s plans to support the artistic community amid COVID-19. 
“I actually proposed the idea because I graduated from the film and media department in 2019, where we had a terrific showcase of all student work by the end of the year,” said Zheng, now in the first year of his Master’s at Queen’s. “It isn’t happening this year, and I wanted that opportunity for my peers.” 
“We encourage students to go beyond the boundaries of a single genre and have fun with their short films,” said Zheng.
Magazenni and Zheng, along with a team of students, have been looking for new ways to support creative individuals on campus and connect with a larger audience. 
The Director, Magazenni, added that COVID-19 has actually pushed their team to be more experimental and branch out in terms of how art is showcased. 
“This is our first virtual screening,” said Magazenni. “Limitations are helping us push things in different directions and connect with people online. Though we’re re-opening next week, it will be at limited capacity. It’s really important to us to provide an array of virtual programs right now.”
The short films will be livestreamed on multiple social media platforms, including Facebook and Instagram.
“I’m not a huge fan of Zoom events,” said Zheng. “They’re often on your schedule but you never attend. People are on social media all the time, and with a livestream, you can jump in or out for a few minutes. It’s a really open space.”
In addition to the virtual showcase, The Gallery has just announced an upcoming virtual residency called Side-ways Artist Residency for emerging or established student artists. Magazenni described Side-ways as “a year long collaborative residency that will result in an exhibition.” 
“We really want to bring students from different programs and disciplines together to see each other’s art through a virtual platform,” said Magazenni. “We want to show the world the talented, original content being created by Queen’s students.” 
Submission guidelines for the short film showcase and the Side-ways Artist Residency can be found on the Union Gallery website. 
In a final note to The Journal, Zheng described the beauty of collaboration between artists. 
“Anyone can be a filmmaker. It’s such a platform for people to connect in a community environment. This is an opportunity to connect, socialize, and get to know people in the field. You don’t have to be a film student to be a filmmaker.”

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