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Selections from the Black Maria Film Festival

  • Templeton Hall 63 Pioneer Street Cooperstown, NY 13326 United States (map)

Selections from the Black Maria Film Festival’s 37th Annual Tour consider “passages” as global issues relating to the intersection of cultures, refugees, immigration, and genocide. Executive director Jane Steuerwald and filmmaker and animator Willy Hartland present the films in person.

New York City Sketchbook

W Hartland NYC Sketchbook - nathan.jpg

“New York City Sketchbook” explores the urban experience unfiltered, with all its beauty and blemishes. Working from his sketchbooks, the filmmaker documents the challenges that New Yorkers face with their hopes and desires as they negotiate the urban matrix. (Willy Hartland, 2017, 13 minutes)

Contigo (With You)


While the Alamo has been designated an official World Heritage site, equally noteworthy is the cultural heritage in the lower Rio Grande Valley. “Contigo” celebrates a Sunday afternoon in San Antonio and a conjunto music festival in San Benito. The project is based on a song by one of the pioneers of conjunto music, Don Santiago Jiménez, and performed by his son, Santiago Jiménez Jr. ( Daniel Boord and Luis Valdovino, 2016, 7 minutes)

The Driver is Red 


Set in Argentina in 1960, this true crime documentary follows the story of secret agent Zvi Aharoni as he searched for a mysterious man named Ricardo Klement. What he discovered in the remote outskirts of Buenos Aires would send shockwaves around the world. (Randall Christopher, 2017, 15 minutes)



Life can change in a blink of an eye, and a thin line separates heaven from hell. You may never know when you have to leave your safe zone until you get the hit and everything is gone in a minute. This is the story of a Syrian refugee girl who crossed that thin line and saw her entire life altered forever. (Mert Canatan, 2017, 10 minutes)

Little Potato 


“Little Potato” is an autobiographical film about a boy growing up gay in the Soviet Union, his mother Elena, and their passage to America.  Struggling to survive during Perestroika, Elena and her son escape into a world of pirated American movies. But soon that’s not enough, homophobia is rampant in the USSR, and Elena decides to become a mail-order-bride to get to America. With an unexpected twist at the end, this is a stirring story of two immigrants taking on the American Dream. (Wes Hurley and Nathan Miller, 2017, 14 minutes)

Complimentary popcorn, candy, and cash bar will be available at this event.