"The dark and dreamlike episode that confronts the viewer in Kevin Pontuti’s VANITÀ is rich in the suggestion of imagery recounting the long human struggle with balancing the lures of the world with the needs of the soul. His solemn woman before a mirror, whose red hair glints in the darkness around her, is redolent of portrayals of the penitent Mary Magdalene, a woman whose physical past is shed to find her spiritual core. Pontuti’s wordless image especially reminds of quiet scenes of contemplation, like Georges de la Tour’s painting of the Penitent Magdalene, where the sinner looks toward a mirror, a traditional symbol of vanity, and is reminded by the insubstantial flame of the transience of earthly life. In Pontuti’s film, the woman’s disturbing moments of disgorging a part of herself- a physical part of herself- is the equivalent in the painting of the quiet skull, hollow with gaping dark orbits, that implies mortality and the willing abandonment of the physical, sensual past. But while the Magdalene lets her earthly beauty go, the woman in Pontuti’s film resorbs that aspect of physical sensuality that links her to world. Her quest for redemption and transformation has not yet found resolution." - Sarah Diebel, PhD
VANITA - BEHIND THE SCENES
The Chippewa Valley Film Festival celebrates the art of the short film. The festival, now in it's third year, is held in the thriving arts community of Eau Claire, Wisconsin. All screenings will be held at the beautiful Micon Cinemas Downtown.
Penitent Production credits: Alexandra Loreth (actor, producer), Peter Galante (cinematographer, producer), Ed Jakober (cinematographer, sound design), Kief Oss (post production), Holly Michel (studio manager, special effects), Chiwei Hui (music), Charis Collins (styling), Susan Jakober (costume design), Andrew McIntosh (fabrication) and Jennifer Sansfacon (props and special effects).