Miami International Film Festival

Miami International Film Festival (MIFF) will world premiere 11 short films documenting a project by a group of nationally and internationally renowned artists commissioned by The Arts Initiative and curated by Primary Projects, at the Festival’s 31st edition taking place March 7 to16, 2014.

Each of the 11 films will individually document work created for The Arts Initiative project by artists Daniel Arsham, Bhakti Baxter, Jim Drain, Friendswithyou, Cody Hudson, Alvaro Ilizarbe, Andrew Nigon, Kenton Parker, Bert Rodriguez, Jen Stark and Austyn Weiner. The films, also commissioned by The Arts Initiative, are produced by Grela Orihuela and directed by Bill Bilowit of Miami’s Wet Heat Project.   Bilowit’s feature-length documentary about Bert Rodriguez, Making Sh*t Up, world premiered at MIFF’s 28th edition in 2011.

“Bill Bilowit not only documents the artistic process, he also captures the emotional essence an artist finds in their work,” said MIFF executive director Jaie Laplante. “We are thrilled to be able to share Bill’s new valentines to some of the top artists of our day, as he brings his own artist’s eye to the combined vision of Arthur Weiner and Books IIII Bischof.”

“Each of the artists in this project have in their own way touched Miami,” said The Arts Initiative founder Arthur Weiner.  “I am honored and humbled to see these documentaries debut at Miami International Film Festival.  It’s an elegant way to celebrate both the work and the fraternity formed by this group while creating their brilliant pieces over the summer at Fashion Outlets of Chicago.”

The 11 contemporary artists were chosen to enrich and enliven Fashion Outlets of Chicago, a newly-opened, $250 million, multi-level luxury outlet mall. The ambitious project was curated by Miami-based collective Primary Projects, founded by Books IIII Bischof, Typoe and Cristina Gonzalez, on behalf ofThe Arts Initiative, a newly formed collective dedicated to placing highly interactive visual art in public venues, founded by AWE Talisman chairman Arthur Weiner.

Since the beginning of June, filmmakers Bilowit and Orihuela have been in production on the documentary series, capturing each of the site-specific, large-scale installations. The caliber of artists is unusual for a retail center, and Wet Heat Project became involved as the developers of the windy city’s Fashion Outlets sought to fuse fashion and art in a new and innovative way – “artist-driven ideas actively integrated into the architectural framework and viewing space.”

The 11 documentary shorts will world premiere at MIFF’s 31st edition (March 7-16, 2014) and be programmed to individually precede the documentary feature films competing in MIFF’s Knight Documentary Competition program.  

The complete line-up of the 31st Miami International Film Festival will be announced in late January 2014.

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