Toast And Tea: making experimental art films happen

[I shamelessly used this on my performance reviews blog earlier today, thought I might as well plug it on here too]

Glasgow-based filmmaker Erica Von Stein is currently seeking support for her latest short film.

With a portfolio of experimental short films that tackle various issues of modern society,  Erica Von Stein’s next project could seem like a natural progression. The Eyes and Ears of Van Gogh is – yes, you guessed it – a short film about Van Gogh. While it is based on his life, it is mainly fictional, and aims to raise awareness of mental health issues through its representation of the famous artist. 

Van Gogh is a name that often brings to mind two contrasting images: a painting of sunflowers and the man behind the art who cut off his left ear. Many people often wonder what could lead a person to do such a thing, and many attempts have been made to understand what Van Gogh went through. Research into his life has shown that he suffered through frequent bouts of mental illness.

Mental illness and the idea of mental wellbeing appear to be umbrella terms for the things we rarely share with others, ranging from depression – mild or intense as it may seem – to bipolar disorder, to a list of many other symptoms and diagnoses (that I personally don’t know enough about to properly name).

The Eyes and Ears of Van Gogh is more than just about Van Gogh and his life, but rather could be viewed as various, intertwined themes. Raising awareness about mental health and illness issues is one aspect of it. Examined from another angle, it could be about the therapeutic properties of art and the value of creative self-expression.

Admittedly, the film has not been made yet, but auditions are on Tuesday and money is required to feed the cast and crew. While Erica prides herself on making artistic low-budget films, she pointed out that any money invested in the film would only be for the actors. In order to get the film out there and draw attention to the issues tackled in it, the best bet would be to get established actors. However, being established in an industry would mean being paid, and hence requires a certain capital which she herself doesn’t have.

“I’m not in it for the money. The money is all for the actors.”

38 days left to finance this. Can you help? 

Let Erica tell you about it herself here: 

http://bloomvc.com/project/The-Eyes-and-Ears-of-Van-Gogh-short-film

Nice ‘N’ Sleazys in Glasgow has generously offered a space for auditions and what could become a fundraising event or two, while the Tiki bar has also been kind enough to allow for filming on location. 

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