New Film Memorializes James Baker Hall

New Film Memorializes James Baker Hall


LexArts and the Downtown Arts Center will screen a new film celebrating the life of writer and filmmaker James Baker Hall on April 30, at 5 pm and 7:30 pm. The film is a meditation on art, spirit and tenacity in the life of one of Kentucky’s most celebrated teachers and creators. The film, by Lexingtonians Whitney Baker and Sarah Wylie Amerman VanMeter includes interviews with Hall and his wife, author Mary Ann Taylor-Hall.

[Click here for Ace’s James Baker Hall Memorial issue ]]

Hall taught creative writing at the University of Kentucky for 30 years, continuing throughout this time to make art films and pursue photography, writing and his work as a mentor.  Previously unreleased art film and still photographs appear throughout, as well as footage of Hall at work in his studio.

“I wanted to make a film that would provide some glimpse of Jim’s energy as a teacher, as an artist and as a man,” says director, Whitney Baker. “While Jim’s life was never perfect, it serves as an example of the transformative power of the spirit of joy and art.”

“We’re thrilled to be presenting a new work by filmmakers from Lexington,” says James M. Clark, President and CEO of LexArts. “And of course, James Baker Hall’s legacy as an artist and mentor will continue to inspire generations of artists.”

Whitney Baker is a Lexington poet, painter and landscape designer, who studied writing with James Baker Hall for more than a decade. He is the former poetry editor of Wind Magazine, and a recently featured reader at the Holler Poetry Series. Sarah Wylie Amerman VanMeter is a Kentucky filmmaker and a co-producer of the Lexington Film League. She worked as James Baker Hall’s photographic studio assistant from 2002-09 and now manages the James Baker Hall Archive of photographs and films.

When: April 30, 2010 screenings at 5pm and 7:30pm
Cost: $6 in advance or Pay What You Can at the door
Where: Black Box Theater at 141 East Main Street, Lexington, KY