Shorts Blocks

On Love & Other Connections

Need an antidote to mass-market romance, or to those soullessly saccharine depictions of platonic love that diminish the complexity, and the beauty, of human relationships? Look no further than On Love & Other Connections, where love is almost always “an action,” as the feminist scholar bell hooks once wrote, “never simply a feeling.” Here, love is a challenge. It insists on vulnerability, and, on occasion, demands life-altering acts of courage—something the characters in these films know only too well.


Spilt Milk
Cierra Glaudé | Los Angeles, CA | 18 min
Genre: Narrative Short

I have to think of us as separate people
Chris Berntsen & Stephen Ira | Brooklyn, NY | 4 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Later Gator
Carson Markland | Irmo, SC | 11 min
Genre: Student, Narrative Short

Quinton Dayne Moore | Raleigh, NC | 3 min
Genre: Student, Narrative Short

Cool for Five Seconds
Dani Wieder | Chicago, IL | 12 min
Genre: Narrative Short

The House These Words Built
Gabby Follett Sumney |Boston, MA | 3 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Jo Hatcher | Winston-Salem, NC | 7 min
Genre: Student, Narrative Short

Coby & Stephen Are in Love
JCarlo Nasisse & Luka Yuanyuan Yang | Austin, TX & Beijing, China | 31 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Forever Young

Untamed, unguarded, and coursing with youthful energy, the audacious narrative shorts and music videos of Forever Young thrill with tales of reckless abandon. Whether they’re indulging in a Disney World Grindr hookup, inciting rebellion in a middle school classroom, or dispensing dubious advice on a desert telephone, these protagonists and performers submit heedlessly to their instincts and impulses, living intensely, without fear or reservation.


Unfinished Business
Mary Dauterman | Brooklyn, NY | 7 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Is That All There Is?
Chris Molina | Miami, FL | 6 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Nicotine – “Running”
Leo Aguirre | San Antonio, TX | 5 min
Genre: Music Video

Date Movie
Emily MacKenzie & Sasha Solodukhina | New Orleans, LA | 10 min
Genre: Narrative Short

The Restoration – “I’ll Never Leave You”
Christopher Tevebaugh | Columbia, SC | 5 min
Genre: Music Video

The Woodpecker
Courtney Bush, Will Carington, & Jake Goicoechea | Brooklyn, NY | 7 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Contour – “New Garden”
CHILD Studio & Contour | London, United Kingdom & Charleston, SC | 4 min
Genre: Music Video

Kiber’s Cosmic Caregiving
Madison McClintock | Albuquerque, NM | 5 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Las Robertas – “Together Outrageously”
Maria Luisa Santos | San José, Costa Rica | 3 min
Genre: Music Video

American Waste
Jordan McLaughlin | Winston-Salem, NC | 27 min
Genre: Narrative Short

People Portraits

Inspired and inspiring, the tenacious figures at the center of these People Portraits are exemplars of southern resilience, unwavering in their quests for lives of dignity and distinction. From the barbershops of Statesboro, Georgia, to the professional softball fields of Akron, Ohio, these subjects captivate with their clear-eyed determination and fierce sense of self. In the mood for family-friendly documentary fare? Get to know the compelling characters of People Portraits.


Knocking Down the Fences
Meg Shutzer | Oakland, CA | 12 min
Genre: Student, Documentary Short

Abbey Hoekzema | Savannah, GA  | 6 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Alexis Garcia-Bueno
Statesboro, GA | 11 min
Genre: Student, Documentary Short

Kevin Wells | Hillsborough, NC | 11 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Remembering Elwood Higginbottom
Jonathan Smith | Myrtle, MS | 7 min
Genre: Documentary Short

David Bliss | Donalds, SC | 13 min
Genre: Documentary Short

W. Feagins, Jr. | Atlanta, GA | 10 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Rites of Passage

“The art of losing,” the poet Elizabeth Bishop wrote, “isn’t hard to master.” That much is clear when you consider the loss-haunted coming of age shorts that round out our Rites of Passage block, where—for better or worse—experience evaporates whatever illusions, expectations, or misconceptions our protagonists are clinging to. These deeply personal, altogether striking narrative shorts, experimental films, and documentaries seem to suggest that, through such loss, we’re able to emerge more fully ourselves.


Carlos Estrada | Austin, TX | 11 min
Genre: Student, Narrative Short

Eric Gheorghe | Atlanta, GA | 2 min
Genre: Narrative Short

One of Their Own
Allen Colombo | Los Angeles, CA | 4 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Here There Be Tygers
Jennifer Trudrung & Polly Schattel | Asheville, NC | 10 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Caro Comes Out
Brit Fryer & Caro Hernandez | Brooklyn, NY | 12 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Sisters 3
Ace McColl | Atlanta, GA | 11 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Quiet and Clear
Andre Rangiah | Franklin, LA | 8 min
Genre: Narrative Short

3-Part Horror-mon-ee
Ashley Teamer | New Orleans, LA | 11 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Things That Happen in the Bathroom
Edward Hancox | Austin, TX | 13 min
Genre: Student, Narrative Short

Southern Movements

To experience a distinctly southern strain of spirituality, let Southern Movements overtake you. Raw and otherworldly, these radical music videos, documentary portraits, and narrative shorts locate the sublime among the maligned and the misunderstood, centering vulnerable characters who, more often than not, turn to art as a means of liberation or catharsis. In these films, bodies are vessels—the earthly shapes that transcendence takes, if only for a moment.


Jared Dawson is The Church of Lavonia Elberton
Adam Forrester | Atlanta, GA | 14 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Blato Zlato – “Vodata Teche”
Sasha Solodukhina | New Orleans, LA | 7 min
Genre: Music Video

Bodies Like Oceans
Kat Cory | Portland, OR | 13 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Vogue Virgin
Fraser Jones | Atlanta, GA | 8 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Birth of Pleasure
Anicka Austin & Lev Omelchenko | Durham, NC & Atlanta, GA | 13 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Catalina Jordan Alvarez | Yellow Springs, OH | 15 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Syd Horn & Olivia Perillo | Lafayette, LA | 5 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Roni Nicole Henderson | Columbia, SC | 13 min
Genre: Experimental Narrative Short

Gritty Creatures

Welcome, one and all, to our menagerie of malevolence, where bayou beasts, flesh-hungry forest dwellers, Area 51 martians, and all manner of Gritty Creatures are arrayed for your viewing pleasure. If you’re a seasoned Grits-goer, eclectic in your tastes—as assured in your love of splatter horror as you are in your love of quirky character studies—you’ll delight in these ingenious genre-inspired shorts. Expect an elevated heartbeat, bucketfuls of viscera, and a whole lot of DIY spirit.


The Rougarou
Lorraine Caffery | Mandeville, LA | 15 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Kate E. Hinshaw & Andi Avery | Atlanta, GA | 6 min
Genre: Student, Experimental Narrative Short

Frog People
Kathryn Van Buren | Austin, TX | 13 min
Genre: Narrative Short

The House Guest
David Walton Smith | Charleston, SC | 10 min
Genre: Narrative Short

David Axe | Columbia, SC | 2 min
Genre: Narrative Short

The Way Station
Jason Affolder | New Orleans, LA | 8 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Madeleine Richardson | Asheville, NC | 7 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Old Man Planet
Jesse Quales |Lexington, SC | 4 min
Genre: Student, Documentary Short

Scott Lazer |Brooklyn, NY | 12 min
Genre: Documentary Short

No Ordinary Place

Quiet and cerebral, the poetic contemplations of community and family that comprise No Ordinary Place remind viewers of the inescapable influence of environment on identity. Whether their cameras are trained on the rocky coastlines of a far-flung Grecian island, or the overgrown front yards of a fading Texas neighborhood, the filmmakers behind these elegant documentaries and experimental shorts are united in their preoccupation with landscapes and lives in flux.


The Island Man
Alex Morelli | Durham, NC | 21 min
Genre: Student, Documentary Short

Medusa & the Abyss
Felicity E. Palma | Los Angeles, CA | 11 min
Genre: Experimental Short

East Side
Carlo Nasisse & Patricia Nogueira | Austin, TX & Mexico City, Mexico | 10 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Eastern State
Talena Sanders | Sebastapol, CA | 5 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Little Saluda USA
Lillian Burke & Amada Torruella | Columbia, SC | 13 min
Genre: Documentary Short

When It Is Still
Anna Kipervaser | Sharjah, United Arab Emirates | 10 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Blue & Gold Marching Machine
Jen Hughey, Aly Vermillion, & Nathan Burton | Asheboro, NC | 18 min
Genre: Student, Documentary Short

Political Animals

Lovelorn zoo jaguars, vying for attention from captivity. Stolen rabbits prompting sugarcane field encounters with the divine. The Political Animals that populate this cinematic bestiary challenge whatever preconceived notions we might be harboring about non-human intelligence, dignity, and autonomy on our shared planet. As we reckon with capitalism and its twin legacies of violence and exploitation, as well as the degradation of the environment, these Political Animals make space for reconciliation with the natural world.


Valerio’s Day Out
Michael Arcos | New Orleans, LA | 9 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Does Water Die?
Tom Hansell & Joshua White | Ashe County, NC | 3 min
Genre: Animated Experimental Short

Hall of Fishes
Jennifer Boles | Chicago, IL | 9 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Kevin Contento | Pembroke Pines, FL | 11 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Hudson Geese
Bernardo Britto | New York, NY | 5 min
Genre: Animated Short

Burning Land
Juan Camilo Olmos Feris | Barranquilla, Colombia | 29 min
Genre: Documentary Short

Encoded Visions

For stark, honest assessments of the times in which we live. For visionary explorations of identity and alienation. For alarming, disturbing, and—on occasion—bleakly funny films that ponder questions of antisemitism, whiteness, conspiracy thinking, and other subjects of controversy, turn to Encoded Visions. These short films contend with the fracturing forces of media and technology, scrutinizing their outsized influence on our culture as well as ourselves. Whether such disintegration can be remedied remains to be seen.


Gavin Jennings Harwell | Charlotte, NC | 4 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Dirt Daughter
Marnie Ellen Hertzler | Baltimore, MD | 13 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Madeline Pieschel | Atlanta, GA | 5 min
Genre: Experimental Short

Your Pizza is Outside
Julia Elizabeth Evans | Los Angeles, CA | 9 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Caroline Williams | Studio City, CA | 4 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Conspiracy Cruise
Brad Abrahams | Austin, TX & Miami, FL | 13 min
Genre: Narrative Short

Petting Zoo
Daniel Robin | Atlanta, GA | 11  min
Genre: Documentary Short

Ye Goatherd Gods
Henry Moonrod | Columbia, SC | 4  min
Genre: Student, Experimental Animated Short Short

White Male
Jared Hogan | Charlotte, NC | 4  min
Genre: Experimental Short

Roger Beebe | Columbus, OH | 25  min
Genre: Experimental Short

Non-Competition Shorts Blocks

Migration Flows in 360°

This event, part of Filmmaker Focus, is a 360° Video Showcase that is free and open to the public. You’ll have the chance to connect with the storytellers behind the Indie Grits 2020 selected 360° video projects.


How to Tell a True Immigrant Story
Aggie Ebrahimi Bazaz & Emily Rizzo | Atlanta, GA | 13 min

Libbi Ponce | Tampa, FL | 4 min

Dreams of the Jaguar’s Daughter
Alfredo Salazar-Caro | New York, NY | 8 min

House of Sweet Magic

This block is a galaxy of music videos, animations, short narratives, and enchanting experiments in filmmaking. All crafted by young artists, no two films are alike, all addressing different topics with different styles from different perspectives. From a documentary about engineering drones in China to a music video about juvenile incarceration to hand drawn animations soaring through the clouds, there’s a little bit of everything for everyone.


Participating Youth Media Programs:
Art 180, Richmond, VA
Binford Middle School, Richmond, VA
Camp Flix, Atlanta, GA
Camp Flix Jr., Atlanta, GA
Exchange for Change and South Miami K-8 Center’s C@TCIE magnet program, Miami, FL
Fierce Flix, Asheville, NC
Indie Grits Labs, Columbia, SC
SC Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities, Greenville, SC
SC Governor’s School for Science and Mathematics, Hartsville, SC
Spring Valley High School, Columbia, SC
Women’s Well Being Initiative, Columbia, SC

Shorts Index


Feature Index