director and producer
creating culturally collaborative and community inspired projects in film and art
Valiant! A Car, a Cause, and the Cold War | 2022 | director
Juris asks his friend, Andris, to help repair a car he’s had in storage for 25 years. The “Slant Six” with anti-Soviet slogans used to help youth chain themselves to Soviet embassies from DC to Ottawa. Day to day, the slogans provided some needed PR to a country that few could find on a map. Andris ends up in a Tom Sawyer like situation with Juris and the actual repairs.
Trimda dimd! Music this side of the Iron Curtain during the Cold War, 2021/2022 | director and producer
Recording in make shift basement sound studios, using blankets as sound barriers, their albums were smuggled into Latvia by Soviet sailors.
Here, they found an underground following, going from shows for a few hundred at community centers in the west, to post-Soviet Latvia, where audiences reached over 50,000 at sold out shows.
Pērkons: A VR Rockumentary, 10 minutes, 2018 | producer
With nothing but a unique hard rock sound, subversive lyrics and a meager two kilowatt sound system, Pērkons shook the Soviet establishment to its core.
On permanent display at the Wende Museum of the Cold War in Los Angeles.
The Al Effect, A Celebration of Al Milgrom, his art and work in film, 2017 | producer
Al Milgrom founded the University Film Society in 1962, bringing films from behind the Iron Curtain and directors from across the world to the Twin Cities. Hailed as the world's oldest emerging filmmaker, current projects in post production include The Russian Journey, shot on 16 mm in Soviet Russia in 1958.
The Al Effect was a celebration of Al turning 95, along with many works Starring Al
Surviving the Peace, 79 minutes, 2016 | orig. title Souvenirs: healing after war
In 2002, Vietnam Veteran Ivars “Andy” Pelecis took his own life. Nearly 40 years after returning from Vietnam and over a dozen commitments at the VA, Andy’s records were opened again post-mortem, and became one of the first psychological autopsies within Veterans Affairs.
Satiksimies Gaŗezerā! (See you at Camp), HD, 84 minutes, 2015
Over 2,000 people gathered to watch the premiere of a film about a summer camp. Why? Witness the world behind the bonfires and folksongs, revealing the nuances of belonging and exclusion within cultural frameworks.
The 8030 Project, Open Call Public Art, 2014 - 2015
An open call to create local memorials of 22 everyday objects, to remember the lives of 22 soldiers and veterans lost to suicide each day.
Seen here at Hennepin Gallery at the Hennepin County Government Center.
Mood Llama, created for Made Here, Minneapolis, 2014
Sentiment analysis pulled from Twitter feeds controlling the light flow of this Mood Llama.
Runā Rīga, geo-tagged short films, 2013 | producer
A series of nearly 100 short films showing the stories of the people of Rīga, Latvia. Geo-tagged locations allow viewers to see crossover between the short film tours throughout the city. Interviews include dancer Vija Vētra, former Prime Minister Māris Gailis, writers Leons Briedis and Juris Zvirgzdiņš among many others.
starp Latvijām (between Latvias), feature documentary, 88 minutes, 2003 | director
Based on interviews with over one hundred people including musicians, hockey fans, farmers, executives, and pensioners in the market. From Latvian President Vaira Vike- Freiberga and business tycoon Aivars Lembergs, to Russian poet Sergei Timofeyev, all discussions stem from one question: What does it mean to be Latvian?
Premiered at Lielais Kristaps Film Festival in Riga, and was honored with "Best Local Feature" and "Best of the Fest", Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Festival 2004.
Tour, installation at the Latvian Museum of War Kino Hall, 2002
Two childhood friends, George and Andy, made films together in the early 60s. They end up on separate journeys: one to service in Vietnam, the other to travel in the Middle East. Eight photographs from each were installed with excerpts from their film of the North Shore projected in the middle of the space.
More images and related work at survivingthepeace.com
Elderock, print installation on AirBaltic Aircraft, 2002
A series of portraits of elderly people in the community on monochromatic backgrounds. Juried exhibition for flight, second place.
Saldu dusu (Sweet dreams, sweet sleep), installation, 2000/2005
Pods of light rest on fir branches, light within them ramps in and out slowly, at varying intensities and speed.
Shown with the series "A Nap with Oma", a series of photographs on transluscent emulsion, installed one inch from the wall surface.
Tender, plaster installation, 1997/1998
Gestures caught in moments of time walking along a street, the back of a person squatting emerges through the gallery wall, arms crossed looking on.
Installations were created at the Minneapolis Colleage of Art and Design, Steensland Gallery, and the National Museum of Art in Riga, Latvia.
Omas, crocheted jute and wood, 1995/1996
Crocheted jute mimics barbed wire. Wooden posts cut from fallen trees found in the woods. Originally installed on the edge of a prairie in a remote location, where viewers may happen upon the fence by chance.
Seen here at Franconia Sculpture Park, Shafer, Minnesota, 1997
Reviews: City Pages, Twin Cities Reader, Sculpture Magazine
The Return, wood and plants, 1996
Created for Minneapolis’ No Name Exhibition’s Inauguration Room, commemorating the show at PS1 20 years earlier.
Artists were invited to respond to the space of No Name’s then newly acquired space, “The Soap Factory.” This architecturally integrated work is a depiction of the earth and plant life beneath us emerging. An area in the floor rises and creates a chasm.
Rocks Beneath, photography with bronze, oak, and stones, 2005
Eight photographs are inlayed in an ten foot by eight foot oak floor with bronze frames. Beneath the frames, stones are revealed.