Obrien film

“With a face of golden pleasure, elegantly destroy,” is one of the films by SIU featured by Heather M. O'Brien, an assistant professor in SIU Carbondale’s School of Media Arts, as part of a film series March 19 at ArtSpace 304 in Carbondale. (Photo provided)

March 11, 2022

Films featuring works by SIU cinema professor is March 19

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. — A series of films by Heather M. O’Brien, an assistant professor in cinema in Southern Illinois University Carbondale’s School of Media Arts, will be part of a showcase later this month.

The event, dyad gaze, An evening of films by Heather M. O’Brien, aims to offer a nuanced dialogue on issues relating to gender, spirituality, grief, exile and belonging. The event is from 6-8 p.m. March 19 at ArtSpace 304, 304 W. Walnut St., Carbondale, and is free and open to the public.

The evening will feature four of O’Brien’s works:

Also featured will be “Dead Flowers for Bev,” a 2021 essay film by Cody Tracy, a Master of Fine Arts student at SIU Carbondale who will graduate in May. The film takes the audience on a journey as the filmmaker works through the loss of his grandmother, who died alone in a hospital shortly after the COVID-19 pandemic began.

O’Brien came to SIU Carbondale in 2021. She was an assistant professor in the Department of Fine Arts and Art History at The American University of Beirut in Lebanon from 2016 to 2020 and gave birth to her first child the same day that the Port of Beirut was hit by a chemical explosion on August 4, 2020.

There will be a Q&A with the filmmakers after the screenings, with Sarah Lewison, an associate professor in the School of Media Arts, serving as moderator. Copies of O’Brien’s latest book, “like the delayed rays of a star,” published in 2021, will also be available. Seating is limited so RSVP is encouraged.