School of Fine Arts hosts 3-day film festival

Beginning Friday evening the University Of Connecticut School Of Fine Arts conducted a three day film festival at the Von der Mehden recital hall, and Saturday evening marked the short fiction portion of the festival.

Six films were screened, “Citizen’s Arrest,” by Alex Rouleau, “Sculpture,” by Dmitry Igantyuk and Daniel Kostecki, “the way things flow,” by Keelin Wheeler and Philip Ira, “Sun King” by Henry Stein, “searching for something new,” by Philip Ira and Keelin Wheeler and “Back to Life,” by Ryan Glista.

Following the screenings, first-semester graduate student Milena Almira of the department of literature, cultures and languages lead a talk back highlighting the work from Igantyuk and Kotsecki, two fifth semesters majoring in communications and computer science respectively. Almira graduated from Higher Institute of Art in Cuba with a Bachelor’s of Arts in audiovisual communications and spurred the two young filmmakers, asking questions about the process of making their ten minute short, “Sculpture.”

“I tried not to waste space,” said Kotsecki when asked about his goals in the film about a college student moving into the next phase of life in a very peculiar way by wanting to be a burglar. The film opened with the main character walking up to someone in their car and driveway and taking their wallet at gun point. Later on, the main character breaks into that person’s house to steal a small statuette they made. Eventually it is revealed that the victim’s true passion is to be a sculptor, but is forced to work in business for his father’s company.  The robber hides in the closet while the victim reveal’s his passion to a friend on his cell phone. Guilt ridden, the main character returns the statue and decides that the robber life isn’t for him.

“My favorite part of the process was getting the work finished as it was rewarding,” said Igantyuk when asked about what the best and worst parts of the experience were. For Kotsecki giving direction was the hardest part whereas Igantyuk said as the primary writer, “I hesitated too much on the words and thought too much. Once I started though, it all flowed.”

“People largely don’t like being told what to do, they kind of want to do their own thing,” said Kotsecki.

Both filmmakers shared with those in attendance the artists and directors they say inspired their cinematography and writing, Quentin Tarantino and Christopher Nolan being the two whom inspired them the most in their production. The two students also offered to the audience that one doesn’t need to go to school to create films like they did.

“You do not have to go to school to be an artist though it does help. What is most important is to follow the passion that you have,” said Almira.

Matthew Gilbert is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at He tweets @wickedlouddude.