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CMSI Co-director Brigid Maher's Social Impact Documentary THE MAMA SHERPAS: MIDWIVES ACROSS AMERICA Premieres in California

From left: Executive Producers Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein; Director/Producer Brigid Maher; Co-Producer Kari Barber and Associate Producer Kelsey Marsh. Photo taken by: Jenny Quicksall PhotographyNearly four years after having a VBAC delivery attended by a hospital nurse-midwife, CMSI co-director Brigid Maher’s social impact documentary The Mama Sherpas: Midwives Across America premiered this week at the Aero Theater in Santa Monica, CA and at the UCSF Nursing School in San Francisco, CA. Executive producers Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein (The Business of Being Born) were in attendance.

The premiere events were organized to raise awareness about barriers to midwifery practice and specifically brought light to California AB1306, a full practice authority bill currently pending in CA legislatureRead more...

Former CMSI Graduate Fellow Kelsey Marsh Wins Jury Award in "Diversity in Cannes" Short Film Showcase

Kelsey Marsh accepts the Jury Award at "Diversity in Cannes"Former CMSI Graduate Fellow Kelsey Marsh recently won the Jury Award at the Diversity in Cannes Short Film Showcase for her film Noncritical.

The 20-minute short film follows the journey of Valencia Harris, a mother struggling to bring media and police attention to her daughter's disappearance. Unique Harris, a mother of two from southeastern DC, went missing from her home on October 10, 2010. Her disappearance was initially classified as "non-critical".  Read more...

Fair Use Question of the Month: Creating Artwork from Copyrighted Materials

News InstallationDear CMSI,

I am working on an installation. One of its main features will be a display with current websites of top news sources in different countries. It was also have a loop playing below it of headline news from the week before. Do I have to ask permission from anyone to build this material into my work? Read more...

Documentary at Tribeca: Formats, Cinéma vérité, Exposé

Taxi passes the Tribeca Film Festival

Is documentary a genre? The Tribeca Film Festival this April, which Indiewire just rated among the top three for documentary, gave a chance to survey the scene of docs and look for trends. “Too many people think documentary is a genre,” said programmer Cara Cusumano. “But documentary can have every genre a narrative film can be.”

You can slice the genre question a lot of ways, but you can’t deny that the marketplace for real-life entertainment has never been hotter, and even on the indie doc circuit makers are working within formats that sell. And you can’t deny Tribeca Film Festival is positioning itself as not only a showcase but a market. At the documentary smorgasbord of Tribeca, you could see documentaries working within formats designed for great promo and quick sale. But you could also find the improbable, the quirky, and the shocking. Read more...

Fair Use in the Visual Arts Goes to Detroit

Cranbrook Art MuseumThe visual arts community is already putting the Code of Best Practices in the Visual Arts to work in Detroit. At a late-April meeting at the Cranbrook Art Museum, speakers showed fair use can enable work in five areas.

After a presentation on the Code by Janet Landay of the College Art Association and Patricia Aufderheide, a panel of experts explained why fair use matters to them: Read more...