Universal Particulars: The Tethered - Documentary Media MFA Showcase: Block Museum - Northwestern University
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Universal Particulars: The Tethered - Documentary Media MFA Showcase

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7 PM-9 PM

Event Details

Date & Time:

Thu June 8, 2023
7 PM-9 PM


The Block Museum of Art
40 Arts Circle Drive
Evanston, IL 60208


Open to the public


Documentary Media MFA Showcase 2023 - Night Two

Universal Particulars: The Tethered



Northwestern University's Documentary Media MFA cohort of 2023 is proud to present three nights of thesis project screenings. The screenings will take place on June 7th and 8th at 7 PM at The Block Museum of Art on Northwestern University’s Evanston Campus with a final presentation of two multi-media installation projects on June 9th and a closing reception to follow on June 9th at 7 PM.

The screenings will showcase a diverse range of short nonfiction films and interactive media projects, exploring themes of connection, family, societal choices, grief, and personal identity. The event is open to the public and offers a unique opportunity for audiences to engage with Northwestern’s next generation of non-fiction media makers.

Night Two, titled The Tethered, presents films that wander through geological and emotional landscapes. From a small village in Saudi Arabia to the suburbs of Los Angeles, all the way to here in Evanston; the films’ participants, entrapped by familial obligations, societal choices, and external gazes, seek to sever the ties that hold them. The Tethered is a mosaic journey where the concrete turns liminal and the fleeting turns perpetual.

About the films:

The Story of Saleh by Zaki Alabdullah | @zakif_25

A teen boy struggles to care for his aging dad while navigating economic and personal pressures.

Living in Uncertainty by Naomi Zidon | @zara99xx

Two academically overachieving sisters have to come face to face with the reality of their uncertain futures due to their undocumented immigration status. Living in Uncertainty is a hybrid documentary that explores the intimacy of sisterhood and the emotional turmoil of legal limbos.

In the Aftermath by Meghan Wells | @meghanwells

A mass shooting and three fires struck a small, suburban town within 24 hours. Looking back 4 years later, did this community find healing and peace?

Beneath the Red Sky by Ye Xi | @cicissicici

While awaiting her U.S. visa lottery results, a Taiwanese young woman reflects on her uprooted journey. As she ponders and prays, the past returns and answers.

William at 22 by Li Zemin
A filmmaker in a hurry to shoot, and a student dreaming of becoming a big star. The two come together because of filming. Is it performance or true emotion? Amidst the laughter and tears of life at 22, hidden are unknown memories.


About the 2023 Documentary Media MFA Showcase:

Night One, titled "Signal to Noise" is a collection of five short nonfiction films that center around moments of connection and disconnection; within families, between strangers, and across memories and mediums. Engaging in essayistic, animated, analog, and magical realist modes, these films push the boundaries of the documentary form and explore the line between memories and reality.

Night Three features two interactive media projects by Laura Gede and Rasheed Peters, under the name Binding Domains. Through a multi-modal sensory experience, Passive Transport and Dead Yard offer an immersive exploration of the complex nature of human experience; inviting audiences to engage with themes of memory, loss, identity, and personal transformation.

The event promises to be a unique and thought-provoking experience for all those in attendance and an exciting culmination of two years of intensive work. Following each presentation will be a Q&A session. Admission is free, and all are welcome to attend.

Contact The Block Museum of Art for more information: (847) 491-4000 or email us at block-museum@northwestern.edu