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Notes from New Mexico: Sundance Institute Native Lab 2022 Participant Diaries

The Sundance Native Lab 2022 cohortThe Sundance Native Lab 2022 cohort

This May, the Sundance Native Lab kicked off with a unique two-pronged approach. From May 2-6, fellows met solely online, greeting each other and introducing their projects virtually through Zoom. The following week, from May 9-14, the Native Lab took place in Santa Fe, New Mexico—the first time fellows were able to convene in-person at the Lab’s Southwestern outpost since before the pandemic. 

Established in 2004, the Native Lab at Sundance connects emerging Indigenous filmmakers with seasoned industry mentors, engaging in a series of workshops that focus on fortifying the fellows’ writing, directing, and technical skills. Several Full Circle fellows, young creators between the ages of 18-24, also join this year’s Native Lab cohort. Interests among this year’s attendees range from screenwriting, directing, cinematography and editing, with considerable creative overlap. 

Five Native Lab fellows—Anpa’o Locke, Tiare Ribeaux, Daniel Pewewardy, Taietsarón:sere ‘Tai’ Leclaire and Justin Ducharme—reflect on their recent hybrid experience for Filmmaker, with a particular emphasis on the power of returning to in-person cinematic collaboration. 

“The Collaboration Process Is What Makes Filmmaking Feel Like Home”: Anpa’o Locke on Sundance Native Lab 2022

“I Can Create and Be Grounded in My Own Path”: Tiare Ribeaux on Sundance Native Lab 2022

“The Excitement Everyone Is Feeling Is Infectious”: Daniel Pewewardy on Sundance Native Lab 2022

“I’m Talking Emotional Tension in the Room”: Taietsarón:sere “Tai” Leclaire on Sundance Native Lab 2022

“This Experience Really Felt Rare”: Justin Ducharme on Sundance Native Lab 2022

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