Join us for a FREE screening of the Academy Award winning short film INOCENTE, an intensely personal and vibrant coming of age documentary about a young artist, the transformative power of art and the new face of homelessness in America: children. Recommended for Ages 13+
Following the film:
- Q&A with the film’s Executive Producer Dr. Susan MacLaury and other relevant experts
- Hands-on art workshop for all who wish to participate
This program is presented in partnership with the Unitarian Universalist Congregation at Shelter Rock
This intensely personal and vibrant coming of age documentary about a young artist’s fierce determination to never surrender to the bleakness of her surroundings follows 15 year-old Inocente, who refuses to let her dream of becoming an artist be caged by her life as an undocumented immigrant forced to live homeless for the last nine years. Despite this history, Inocente’s eyes envision a world transformed…where buildings drip in yellow and orange, where pink and turquoise planets twinkle with rescued dreams, and one-eyed childlike creatures play amongst loved babies and purple clouds. Inocente’s family history is slowly revealed through her paintings. Told entirely in her own words, we come to Inocente’s story as she realizes her life is at a turning point, and for the first time, she decides to take control of her own destiny. Irreverent, flawed and funny, she’s now channeling her irrepressible personality into a future she controls. Her talent has finally been noticed, and if she can create a body of work in time, she has an opportunity to put on her first art show. Meanwhile, her family life is at a tense impasse – – if she legally emancipates herself from her mother to strike out on her own, she’ll risk placing her brothers in foster care, but to stay is unbearable. INOCENTE is both a timeless story about the transformative power of art and a timely snapshot of the new face of homelessness in America, children. Neither sentimental nor sensational, INOCENTE will immerse you in the very real, day-to-day existence of a young girl who is battling a war that we rarely see. The challenges are staggering, but the hope in Inocente’s story proves that the hand she has been dealt does not define her, her dreams do.
Dr. Susan MacLaury, PhD, LSW, is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of the non-profit film production company Shine Global, an organization dedicated to ending the abuse and exploitation of children through films that raise awareness, promote action, and inspire change. She was an Executive Producer of the Academy Award®- nominated and two-time Emmy Award®-winning War/Dance, Academy Award®-winner Inocente, The Harvest (La Cosecha), 1 Way Up in 3D, The Eagle Huntress, and Liyana. She also produced The Wrong Light and is currently producing another feature documentary about juvenile justice. Susan also directs the outreach and advocacy for all of Shine’s projects.
Susan is dually degreed in social work administration and health education and was associate professor of health education at Kean University from 1994 through 2013. For more than twenty years she has directed educational and prevention programs for adolescents in New York and New Jersey. She has also provided extensive staff development to teachers, counselors, and healthcare providers working with adolescents nationally.