Each year the Cleveland International Film Festival commissions a local artist to create its unique and meaningful filmmaker awards. Showcasing Cleveland talent and the beauty of our city is at the heart of CIFF. This year CIFF is collaborating with the Museum of Creative Human Art (MOCHA), whose vision is to transform the art world by ensuring equity, diversity, and the inclusion of underserved artists. Through this partnership, the Festival is proud to announce that our Award Artist is Lo Smith, who has created an interactive book at the award.
Lo Smith (they/them) was born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio and, as a result, is both aggressively Midwestern and unapologetically Black. They are an artist and curator invested in Black stories and joy. Their mixed media works of printmaking, fiber, and performance aim to platform Black joy through exploring medical experimentation, mental health, and community healing.
Their work has recently been shown at the Morgan Conservatory, the Cleveland Institute of Art, Ori Gallery, the Granoff Center for the Creative Arts, and Emerson College. They enjoy imagining radical futures, baking, and exploring botany. Lo is currently based in Cleveland, Ohio.
This interactive book is both an award and memory keeper. Awards are typically tokens of achievement, a well-deserved flash point in a much longer journey. With these award books, I wanted to intentionally provide awardees an opportunity to reflect and infuse their own individual journeys into their awards. Whether displayed on a mantle, or tucked away in a bedside table, the writing and reflection done within this award will be the awardee's own personal time capsule. Take a moment, you deserve it.
CIFF46 filmmaker awards will be presented throughout the Festival and at the Closing Awards Ceremony, April 9, 2022 at the Connor Palace Theatre. Closing Night is sponsored by Pierre’s Ice Cream Company.