Film Festivals

Summer of Films: Persistent VISION Film & Video Festival

1 Jun , 1998  

Written by Pattie Markson | Posted by:

A profile of the films at the 1998 festival.

The Persistent VISION Film & Video Festival scheduled for Thursday, June 25 at the Warwick Cinema is one of the more unpredictable aspects of the Marblehead Festival of Arts. It’s also a pure labor of love for its producer, Kim Foley who first created the film festival in1996. Through Foley’s professional contacts and "persistent vision," the unjudged event is quietly promoted to some of the country’s most serious makers of independent films. It deliberately resists definition, seeking a mix of moods that will entertain, interest, and provoke the audience for one, two to three hour showings. Some of the entries will be under a minute in length. Others may stretch to an hour. The only certainty is that these are films you’re unlikely to see anywhere else.

"A lot of independent film festivals are showcases for features and filmmakers who want to get into the big time," said Foley. "The Marblehead festival is different. It’s an independent film and video festival in the truest sense where both audience and filmmakers are free of commercial pressures. In that atmosphere, the creativity can be astonishing."

This year’s festival is dedicated to the memory of Kathleen Connor, experimental filmmaker and friend of Foley’s whose work has inspired many artists. The 1998 entries include Karen Aqua’s nine-minute "Ground Zero-Sacred Ground" which explores the juxtaposition of an ancient Native American rock art site and an atomic bomb detonation site. Nina Hasin’s six-minute "American Rhapsody" is a poetry video. Other entries from across the country are still being selected.

"There is definitely not a New England focus," says Foley. "Anyone, anywhere can enter and potentially have their work shown."

Foley studied film and video at The Evergreen State College in the early 1980s and completed her graduate work at MIT. She has worked in the industry as a producer, editor, and filmmakers. She credits the Marblehead YMCA for making the first Persistent VISION event possible and acknowledges the assistance of Sally Schrieber-Cohn and National Boston Video Center, and the "moral support" of Robb Macomber. Will there be other film festivals in future years? Foley is making no promises, but with her persistence you have to believe it will happen again… and again… and again.

Please check local papers for specific starting times of the Persistent VISION Film & Video Festival. There are 2 showings scheduled, first one beginning at approximately 7 pm on Thursday, June 25 at the Warwick Cinema.

For more information, email Kim Foley at