Be Free: Black Lives Matter

EPFC | November 15th, 2016

guest curator: David Zlutnick

This month’s theme is “Documenting the Movements,” featuring short video covering contemporary struggles for social justice. With the election of Donald Trump this is proving to be a more fitting theme than I initially imagined – or hoped it ever would be. While failing to secure the popular vote, the President-elect managed to win the electoral college, ushering in a frightening new age in American politics. And let’s be quite clear: it is a politics that champions authoritarianism, white supremacy, and patriarchy. It is one that threatens to cause immense damage to communities of color, women, LGBTQ+, immigrants, Muslims, and countless others. And so it is a time when strong movements for justice are needed more than ever – ones that are intersectional, based in a politics of solidarity, are participatory and include more of us than ever. Clarifying the moment, some of this has already been seen in the unprecedented protests that have been taking place since election night.

It was already my intention for this week’s video to be focused on the Black Lives Matter movement, a choice that is now even more appropriate. In the coming days/weeks/months/years there will be protests and organized resistance across the country. Much of that seems possible largely because of the imaginative and powerful forces of the Black Lives Matter movement, which has taken this country by storm and forced a conversation on race and power that is needed now more than ever. In recognition of that, this week’s selection is Be Free: Black Lives Matter by Ralston Smith (

Two years ago this month it was announced that police officer Darren Wilson would not face charges for killing Mike Brown in Ferguson, Missouri. In Washington DC, like dozens of cities across the US, people poured into the streets expressing their rage and despair. Filmmaker Ralston Smith was there and documented the protest, capturing the sites and sounds in a raw and emotional video that calls on all of us to scream “Black Lives Matter.”

Watch Be Free: Black Lives Matter here:

See you in the streets.

Into The Streets

EPFC | November 7th, 2016

Guest curator: David Zlutnick

This month’s theme is “Documenting the Movements,” featuring short video covering contemporary struggles for social justice. With tomorrow being Election Day, it seems to many (and it may very well be true) that the fate of the world hangs in the balance. Yet oddly enough there were three 90-minute presidential debates during which not one question was asked about climate change, an issue that really could doom humanity unless urgent action is taken. As such I figured it was appropriate to lead off this month with a short documentary looking at the environmental justice movement, and specifically the global movement for climate action.

In September 2014 hundreds of thousands of people flooded the streets of New York City to participate in the People’s Climate March, demanding global action against climate change. Though several international mass actions have taken place since, it was and remains the largest ever protest for climate justice. The Meerkat Media Collective (, based in NYC, produced an excellent short documentary about the march, capturing beautiful images from the day along with a diverse mix of voices from those participating.

Watch Into the Streets here: