Joel Silvers Filmmaker, Writer, Visual Artist & Educator Contact Joel

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A Poet in Every Classroom

A POET IN EVERY CLASSROOM from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

A Poet in Every Classroom is a documentary about innovative methods for teaching literary arts and creative writing. It focuses upon a pioneering organization founded in Detroit called “InsideOut,” and among its many activities, this nonprofit organization specializes in placing accomplished poets and other kinds of writers in public school classrooms at all grade levels. Large amounts of un-staged continuous footage was obtained in a variety of inner city instructional settings over the period of several months in order to make this film – along with in-depth interviews with a diverse range of education, students and recognized writers. Among topics covered in this documentary are the impact that arts education can have upon overall academic achievement and the importance of cultivating individual voices of self-expression. This film premiered at Detroit’s historic Gem Theater and was aired on Detroit Public Television.

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ReImagining Work Presents: Gar Alperovitz – October 29,2011

ReImagining Work Presents: Gar Alperovitz – October 29, 2011 from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

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DETROIT STORIES: Detroit City Council President Charles Pugh – excerpts

DETROIT STORIES: City Council President Charles Pugh – excerpts from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

In the fall of 2006, Joel Silvers and three of his advanced editing students – Stephen Black, Jeantia Bush and Ashley Docherty – launched an oral history project that they called “Detroit Stories” under the sponsorship of the Wayne State University Office for Undergraduate Research.

Modeled after the National Public Radio project called “Story Corps,” this project captured hundreds of hours of interviews with a diverse range of people from the Detroit Metropolitan Area on their family histories in Detroit.

These interviews focused upon the immigrant experience and how people’s families arrived in Detroit over the past one hundred years. The Wayne State interviewers then asked about why the immigrants stayed and what eventually made this dynamic city their “home.”

The ultimate objective of this ambitious project was to build a large historical archive on one of the world’s most important urban and industrial centers during the years of rapid growth and expansion.

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Among the many dozens of individuals who were interviewed for this project was Charles Pugh, a well-known television journalist who was elected as the President of the Detroit City Council in 2009. He touched upon many topics of personal concern during this interview, and what follows is a sample of his thoughts and feelings on Detroit’s culture, affirmative action, gender equality, gay marriage and the city that he so deeply identifies with.

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The Signature Sound of Orchestra Hall

The Signature Sound of Orchestra Hall from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

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RICHARD LEWIS: portraits … community … and all that jazz

RICHARD LEWIS: portraits … community … and all that jazz from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

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GILDA SNOWDEN – Detroit Painter & Educator

GILDA SNOWDEN – Detroit Painter & Educator from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

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The Future of Memory – excerpts

THE FUTURE OF MEMORY – excerpts from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

The film The Future of Memory documents Women of Algiers, a temporary installation work by Patrick Ireland, from conception and execution to exhibition and ultimate disappearance. Combining cinema verite with interviews with the artist and noted writers Lucy Lippard and Rudolf Arnheim, the film also addresses issues pertinent to the history of conceptual and installation art. … Joel Silvers: Director/ Principal Cinematographer/Editor; Nancy Jones & Joel Silvers: Producers. Shot in 16mm.

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The Great Detroit Incinerator Battle: Civil Disobedience – May 16, 1988

The Great Detroit Incinerator Battle: Civil Disobedience – May 16, 1988 from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

The Detroit “Waste-To-Energy” Incinerator – the world’s largest trash incinerator – opened in 1986 to great controversy, and fellow Detroit filmmaker George Corsetti and I have documented the ongoing community opposition to this incinerator ever since. In 1988, a group of environmental activists calling themselves the Evergreen Alliance formed to mobilize the inner city community immediately surrounding this incinerator, and on May 16, 1988, they staged their first act of civil disobedience which George and I captured on camera. Many of their subsequent demonstrations were creatively staged using gigantic puppets inspired by Vermont’s renowned Bread and Puppet Theater. These acts of guerrilla theater were also captured on camera and will be shown in upcoming video documentaries. … Among the initial participants in the Evergreen Alliance protests who can be seen in this documentation of the May 16, 1988 civil disobedience is Harry Schnurr, an inspiring member of Detroit’s counter-cultural activist community who passed away in April of 2011.

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John Hegarty – Draftsman & Painter

JOHN HEGARTY – Draftsman & Painter from Joel David Silvers on Vimeo.

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