MICHAEL GAUTHIER

2020 BACHELOR OF FINE ARTS GRADUATE

EMPHASIS IN ART + TECH

As a motion designer, visual effects artist, and filmmaker, my body of work is innately tied into storytelling, in such a way that appeals to individual character struggles as a lens into larger values and principles. Such values and principles hearken back to my consciousness of the global black experience, primarily in the West, and to the Judeo-Christian 

values/worldview I was raised with (and the questioning/searching of that upbringing).

 

As a story that the world still lives in, the fallout of European Imperialism has precipitated much of the reality that African continentals and diaspora live in; however, much as African history isn’t confined to this epoch, the black experience proliferates itself - its people, philosophies, and understanding – with agency, from which a distillation of the human experience can be gained.

A text transcript of the content in the video will be provided upon request.


BFA THESIS PROJECT

For the BFA Show, mintention was to premiere a short film following the tale of Desal, a young Haitian martial artist, as he struggles with thoughts of vengeance for his father's murderer. Olon, the best friend to Desal, intervenes, not willing to let his friend fall into a dark path.

“Kèzansèt” is a compound word in Haitian Creole, meaning “heart of the ancestors”. In the movie, Desal uses kung fu as his main style, but Olon is a practitioner of “tiré machet”, a real Haitian martial art founded in the machete fighting used by Haitians during the Haitian Revolution of the late 18th /early 19th centuries. This revolution not only birthed a fighting style but established the first black republic in the West, having been the only successful slave revolt in known history, effectively breaking the back of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade. This movie speaks to the question of using the power of one’s heart /ardor for personal gratification, such as vengeance, or the nobler ideals of the righteous revolution. This stands as an allegory for the activist spirit that many carry today, and how much power can be used for great progress in society, or misused for misguided, if not self-serving, enterprise.

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