by John LaFollette
The ‘Ville Voice correspondent
This year’s Idea Festival is just barely more than halfway finished, and the presentations so far have been far-reaching, well-attended, and largely topical. If you haven’t made it down yet—it’s one of Louisville’s most interesting annual events, after all—you’re due for a check-in. Here’s a redux run-down of the ideas being pondered:
Tiffany Schlain — “Connected: A stream-of-consciousness ride through the interconnectedness of humankind”: The founder of the Webby Awards—the international awards honoring excellence on the internet—and independent film maker is working on a new project called “Connected: A Declaration of Interdependence,” excerpts of which were screened at the opening event of IF 2009.
The film itself, done in Schlain’s distinctive documentary style, discusses the inter-connectedness of systems in nature, the social sciences, and in human behavior. Into the documentary, she weaves an intensely personal story of her pregnancy with twins during her dying father’s final months battling brain cancer.
The film is still looking for financiers.
Kembrew McLeod -- “Copyright Criminals”: The most interesting issue raised at IF so far—copyrighting culture. McLeod’s new documentary “Copyright Criminals” examines, through the prism of sampling in hip-hop, the question of whether artists should own what they create.
The film highlights the problems with American copyright laws—under which the sampling royalties for the drum beats in a particular James Brown track are awarded to the record company that released the song and not to the drummer whose creativity launched the song in the first place—as well as the hypocrisy in claiming that artists across time cannot legally influence each other.
Brilliantly arranged, and boasting a bumping soundtrack, the film will appear on PBS’s Independent Lens next year.
Read More After the Jump…