November 8, 2014 @ 11:00 am – 12:30 pm
Watkins Theater, 2298 Rosa L Parks Boulevard, Watkins Institute, Nashville, TN 37228, USA
The Film School at Watkins College of Art, Design & Film and OZ Arts Nashville will present a special screening and presentation by Prashant Bhargava, an award-winning filmmaker and designer known for his intricately layered and lush visuals, November 7 & 8 in the Watkins Theater.
On Friday, November 7 at 7:30 p.m., Watkins will screen Bhargava’s 2012 feature debut Patang (The Kite, 95 minutes). Weaving the stories of six people during India’s largest kite festival, Patang, which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival, earned a four-star review from Roger Ebert and was named a New York Times Critics Pick.
On Saturday, November 8 at 11 a.m., Bhargava will speak about his career, which includes pioneering work as a commercial director and motion designer as well as a filmmaker with narrative, documentary and experimental credits. Richard Gershman, chair of the Film School at Watkins, will introduce him and facilitate the Q&A session.
The screening and lecture are free, but reservations are encouraged: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bhargava’s visit to Watkins is in conjunction with OZ Arts Nashville’s presentation of Vijay Iyer: Music of Transformation, within which a new film by Bhargava is included. In collaboration with composer/pianist Iyer (a 2013 MacArthur Fellow), Bhargava’s film Radhe Radhe: Rites of Holi, will be screened simultaneously to Iyer’s orchestral music, performed live by the International Contemporary Ensemble and conducted by David Fulmer. Based on Igor Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring, Radhe Radhe is a journey of desire and devotion during the colorful and chaotic celebrations of Holi in Mathura, India. Music of Transformation plays two performances at OZ: November 8 at 8 p.m. and November 9 at 2 p.m. Tickets can be purchased via OZNashville.com
About Prashant Bhargava
Described by producer Anthony Bregman as “visionary and soulful” and “masterful” by Roger Ebert, Prashant Bhargava is a director and designer whose work is recognized worldwide for its original storytelling and honest craft. Born and raised on the South Side of Chicago, Bhargava is one of the first South Asians to emerge from the hip-hop movement as a graffiti artist. His filmmaking (his first film, the short Sangam, debuted at Sundance) builds from his pioneering work as a commercial director and motion designer.
Known for his intricately layered and lush visuals, Bhargava spearheaded over 100 campaigns for HBO (including The Wire, Def Poetry Jam, Rome and OZ) and films such as Born into Brothels, John Frankenhiemer’s Path to War, Mira Nair’s Hysterical Blindness, Raoul Peck’s Lumumba, and Denzel Washington’s Antwone Fisher. Bhargava designed effects sequences for Alex Rivera’s feature Sleep Dealer and directed music videos and promos for musical acts Cornershop, Talib Kweli and Missy Elliot. Notable clients include Accenture, NBC, Woolrich, PBS, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Volvo and OMango and collaborations include design and production studios such as R/GA, Click 3x and Edgeworx.
Following Sangam – which received awards at the Clermont Ferrand Film Festival, Nashville Film Festival and Short Shorts Asia – he directed Ammaji, a documentary portrait of his grandmother, Backwaters, an experimental Super 8 short, and Kashmir, a film and live music performance with electronic band Dawn of Midi.
Bhargava’s feature length directorial debut, Patang (The Kite) received rave reviews, including four stars from Roger Ebert who named it one of 2012’s best. An anthem to the old city of Ahmedabad, it weaves the stories of six people during India’s largest kit festival. Patang, which premiered at the Berlin Film Festival and ran in the main competition at the Tribeca Film Festival, won Best Feature Narrative at the Hawaii Film Festival, Best World Narrative at the Indy Film Festival, a Special Jury Award at the Osians Film Festival in New Delhi, Best Feature Narrative at the DC APA Film Festival, and Best Film at the SAIFF’s Rising Star Film Awards; Bhargava was also named Best Director. Defying convention in its process and cinematic language, Patang united a community torn apart by religious conflict and natural disaster, starring two of India’s finest actors, Seema Biswas and Nawazuddin Siddiqui.
His latest work, Radhe Radhe: Rites of Holi, is a journey of desire and devotion during the colorful and choatic celebrations of Holi in Mathura, India. Created in collaboration with celebrated composer and pianist Vijay Iyer, the performance is presented as a film projected in conjunction with a live orchestra, and was described by NPR as “one of the most brilliant and exciting commemorations of the 100th anniversary of Igor Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring.”
Bhargava studied computer science at Cornell University and theatrical directing at the Barrow Group and at the Actors Studio (MFA program). He has lectured at New York University, Cornell University, Amherst College, UNC Chapel Hill, Stonybrook, Indiana University, University of Chicago and CEDIM. Bhargava was a Copeland Fellow at Amherst College and a New York Foundation of the Arts Fellow in both 1997 and 2012.