The 2011 Flaherty On The Road Series


August 3, 2011 NEW YORK, NY – The Robert Flaherty Film Seminar is excited to announce the 2011 Flaherty on the Road traveling film series, comprised of three programs of innovative, groundbreaking, and provocative nonfiction film selected from the 2011 Robert Flaherty Film Seminar.

Now in its 57th year, The Robert Flaherty Film Seminar is named after Robert Flaherty (1884-1951), considered by many to be the father of the American documentary. The annual Flaherty Seminar — an intense and intimate week of film screenings and discussion with the makers present — provides filmmakers, programmers, teachers, students, and film enthusiasts an unparalleled opportunity to confront the core of the creative process, reaffirm the freedom of the independent artist, and renew the challenge to illuminate the ways of life of peoples throughout the world. With the Flaherty on the Road initiative, The Flaherty extends the reach of the Seminar beyond its 160 annual participants.

This year, The Flaherty is excited to partner with Film Sprout, a New York-based booking agency that broadens the audience and social impact of independent documentaries through public screening events in both traditional and nontraditional venues, including universities, museums, micro-cinemas, and even restaurants, farms, and vacant lots. Film Sprout will work with The Flaherty to keep the spirit of the Seminar alive throughout the year, and to amplify the Seminar’s powerful support of nonfiction film by expanding its programs’ presence outside the borders of its annual forum.

Film Sprout’s founder and president Caitlin Boyle says, “We are delighted to represent such an abiding and revered tradition as the Flaherty Seminar and to help celebrate the Seminar’s unique and compelling programming by bringing it to an expanded audience across the country.”

Flaherty on the Road is a one-stop shop that makes it easier for programmers and educators to offer a sample of the innovative, exceptional, and oft-times hard-to-see films which are screened at the Seminar. Each program works beautifully to sculpt a sense of place, capture a cultural environment, or evoke a historical period, perfectly embodying the 2011 Seminar’s theme, SONIC TRUTH,” says Mary Kerr, executive director of The Flaherty.

The 2011 Flaherty on the Road series features both shorts and long-form films and videos selected by Dan Streible, programmer of the 2011 Robert Flaherty Film Seminar. The series is offered in three distinct, 70+-minute programs that each provide a thoughtfully curated sample of the film programming for which the Seminar is renowned. Programmers at independent cinemas, cultural organizations, public and institutional libraries, and universities, among other exhibitors across the country, are encouraged to visit and to contact Film Sprout’s Caitlin Boyle at or 212-782-3729 for additional details on booking the traveling program for public exhibition.


(For full program details, please check Flaherty’s website) 



The Artist and the Computer, Lillian F. Schwartz (USA, 1980, 11 min)

Pixillations, Lillian F. Schwartz (USA, 1970, 4 min)

U.F.O.’s, Lillian F. Schwartz (USA, 1971, 3 min)

From Zero, Frank Scheffer (Netherlands, 2011, 60 min)



Window Cleaning in Shanghai, Laura Kissel (USA, 2010, 3 min, Mandarin with English subtitles)

Tan Mian Hua, Laura Kissel (USA, 2011, 15 min, Mandarin with English subtitles)

Singapore GaGa, Tan Pin Pin (Singapore, 2005, 54 min, English, Mandarin, Arabic with English subtitles)



Multiple Sidosis, Sid Laverents (USA, 1970, 10 min)

Yard Work Is Hard Work, Jodie Mack (USA, 2008, 30 min)

The Florestine Collection, a film by Helen Hill, completed by Paul Gailiunas (USA, 2011, 30 min)


About The Robert Flaherty Film Seminar

The Robert Flaherty Film Seminar is named after Robert Flaherty, considered by many to be the father of the American documentary. Flaherty’s groundbreaking documentary of Eskimo life, Nanook of the North, is among the most noted films of the silent era. He was also the creator of such classic poetic films as Moana, Man of Aran, and Louisiana Story. The Seminar began in 1955-before the era of film schools-when Flaherty’s widow, Frances, convened a group of filmmakers, critics, curators, musicians, and other film enthusiasts at the Flaherty farm in Vermont. For more than fifty years the Flaherty Seminar has been firmly established as a one-of-a-kind institution that seeks to encourage filmmakers and other artists to explore the potential of the moving image. The films of such directors as Robert Drew, Louis Malle, the Maysles brothers, Mira Nair, Satyajit Ray, and Robert M. Young were shown at the Seminar before they were known generally in the American film community. New cinematic techniques and approaches first presented and debated at the Seminar have routinely made their way into mainstream American film.

About Film Sprout

Film Sprout is a boutique film booking agency that broadens the audience and social impact of documentaries through public screening events.A leading champion of grassroots and community distribution for independent films and their makers, Film Sprout’s founder and president Caitlin Boyle is the architect of national screening and outreach initiatives for dozens of feature documentaries, including King Corn, Pray the Devil Back to Hell, The End of the Line, A Small Act and Bag It. Previously on staff at NPR affiliates WFIU and WFUV and PBS affiliate WNET, Caitlin serves on the board of Brooklyn micro-cinema UnionDocs and on the advisory board of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts Research Institute for the Advancement of Cinema Arts and Commerce.


For information about The Flaherty, contact:

Mary Kerr

The Flaherty

(phone) 212.448.0457




To book programs from Flaherty on the Road, contact: 

Caitlin Boyle

Film Sprout

(phone) 212.782.3729



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