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in Filmmaking
on Jun 8, 2012


Last night at the NYU Skirball Center, the Vimeo Awards took place and one of the 25 New Faces from 2011, Everynone, were the big winners. For their excellent Symmetry, the video collective of Will Hoffman, Daniel Mercadante and Julius Metoyer III took away both the prize in the Lyrical category and the Grand Prize, which came with an additional $25,000 in prize money.

In my profile of Everynone for 25 New Faces last year, I wrote:

If you listen to the radio, then you may have seen the short documentary essay films of the New York collaborative, Everynone. For the last two years, the three filmmakers — Will Hoffman, Daniel Mercadante and Julius Metoyer III — have been creating witty and allusive short films to accompany the popular WNYC radio program Radiolab, heard on more than 300 public radio stations around the country. Radiolab explores science and philosophy in the guise of radio theater, mixing music and sound effects into presentations that thrillingly veer from the pedagogical to the personal. And if you listen to Radiolab via podcast, then along with the shows come the Everynone videos, appearing every couple of months on your iPod and relating to specific Radiolab programs. This May, for example, was Symmetry, which in just under three minutes of split screen images asks, “Is the world full of deep symmetries and ordered pairs? Or do we live in a lopsided universe?”

Below you can watch both Symmetry and Everynone’s Grand Prize acceptance speech.

Symmetry from Everynone on Vimeo.

2012 Vimeo Awards Grand Prize Winner from Vimeo Festival + Awards on Vimeo.

In his on-stage remarks posted above, Everynone’s Mercadante conveyed both his own excitement and a sense of the Vimeo Awards themselves, as he remarked that he’s never felt at home with film festivals and, mostly, doesn’t even submit the collective’s work. But, echoing others on stage, he spoke of the “Vimeo community,” and how the different character of its group of makers and viewers creates a sense of inclusion for those who may not feel aligned with the independent film industry. Indeed, one established indepedent filmmaker friend said to me after the awards — which were half upscale awards program and half po-mo variety show, with skits and audio mash-ups from Reggie Watts and Beardyman — “I always thought of Vimeo as just a place where I could put passwords on my videos, but there seems to be a lot more to it.”

Indeed, the Vimeo Awards span multiple categories, with only a few (Narrative, Documentary, etc.) being the typical ones feted at most film festivals. Other notable awards included Jeff Desom for his Rear Window Timelapse in the Remix category; and Kyle Ruddick’s collaborative project, One Day on Earth, which won an Honorary Award for Social Change, and is currently playing now at the Quad Theater in New York.

A complete list of winners follows:

The 2012 Vimeo Awards category winners are:

Action Sports: Dark Side of the Lens
Advertising: K-Swiss Kenny Powers – MFCEO
Animation: Umbra
Captured: Sweatshoppe Video Painting Europe
Documentary: Amar (All Great Achievements Require Time)
Experimental: Prie Dieu
Fashion: Skirt
Lyrical: Symmetry
Motion Graphics: A History of the Title Sequence
Music Video: Manchester Orchestra: Simple Math
Narrative: BLINKY™
Series: Often Awesome The Series
Remix: Rear Window Timelapse

Honorary Awards

The Honorary Award for New Creators, recognizing outstanding achievement from a newcomer in the last 18 months, went to directing duo DANIELS. Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan have directed music videos for bands including Battles, The Shins and Foster the People, and also collected the 2012 Music Video Award for their Manchester Orchestra video, “Simple Math.”

The Honorary Award for Social Change, celebrating a film/campaign that has used the medium of film and the reach of an online community to raise awareness of a global, international or local issue, went to One Day on Earth.

The Honorary Award for Digital Maverick, spotlighting a pioneering spirit in the world of online video, went to openFrameworks, which is an open source C++ toolkit designed to assist the creative process by providing a simple and intuitive framework for experimentation.

The Vimeo Festival is currently underway today and tomorrow at the IAC building in New York.

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