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Artist James Picard's Film The Dark & The Wounded Takes Top Award at New Media Film Festival

BY Catherine Kennedy | 13-Jun-2017
New Media Film Festival Announces Winners, THE DARK & WOUNDED Wins Grand Prize "Best Film" at Festival in Los Angeles, CA

THE DARK & THE WOUNDED – Artist/Director James Picard

The Dark & The Wounded directed by James Picard and Jeff Dean triumphed over 87 New Media films and content to win Grand Prize “Best Film” at the 8th Annual New Media Film Festival that ran June 6 to 8, 2017.

World Premiere

GRAND PRIZE: The Dark & The Wounded (Screened in Short Category) Director: James Picard, Jeff Dean Country: Canada, USA Running Time: 26:24

“To go beneath the surface of our distracted reality and get to the root of what is really happening to us as individuals, society and as a species on the planet. By getting past our fears we can become more compassionate and understanding towards ourselves and others, beyond fear, there truly is freedom.”

James Picard’s words ring true and with the current state our world is in, are needed to be heard now more than ever. Picard’s vision of The Dark and The Wounded started over five years ago when he was told a dark secret by a close friend that she was raped continually by her father throughout her childhood. Picard’s empathy took him into the deeper realm of the human psyche looking for answers. He soon began painting a series of artwork that focused on the darker aspects of human nature and why our personal, societal and global wounds of the past still haunt us in the present.

Eventually Picard began looking for a venue to exhibit the series, after being rejected by the main stream galleries, and found a home in some of the darkest and most wounded locations known to mankind …abandoned asylums, prisons and hospitals. He soon began booking locations all across North America and inviting ‘guests’ in for midnight showings to which the response was, as Picard puts it, “…absolutely mind altering.”

Bringing this spectacular idea to life required the addition of more creative talent however, so Picard brought onboard renowned Hollywood composer Jeff Danna to create an awe-inspiring soundtrack, for both exhibition and film, and Dr. Jeff Dean as co-director and head cinematographer, who’s unique and outstanding visionary skills have helped bring the live visceral event experience to film.

The Dark and Wounded Crew, as Picard calls them, consists of many members including Milwaukee native Ryan Bingham who is DP (Director of Photography) whose determination, ceaseless energy and exceptional vision helps implement the dark cinematic look to the film.

To become great, you must have a vision, courage and tenacity...

Master Painter James Picard embodies all three in this defining chapter of his illustrious career. After exhibiting worldwide in a career that spans close to four decades, his new series takes us on a disturbing yet eye opening journey. The foreboding message and dark undertone of this painting series leads him to be rejected from the galleries where he usually displays his work. Determined to share his art and his message, Picard sets plans in motion to exhibit the series in a new way.

In an unprecedented move, he forces his way into the places no one else wants to go—abandoned prisons, vacant asylums long left to rot will become the backdrop for his new work. The Dark and the Wounded.

But entering these unearthly ruins proves to be more difficult than he could have ever imagined… He bends the rules. He trespasses. He writes a fake movie. He does whatever he needs to do to get in. Gaining momentum, he’s got only one thing on his mind… Alcatraz Prison.

The Dark and The Wounded film is a must to see if you get the opportunity. The visuals, footage and message hit you with such impact that it literally stays with you for days afterward. Picard’s film will be shown in various upcoming film festivals across the US and Canada and the touring exhibition is planned for dates in Europe for late 2017 and early 2018. Check out darkandwounded.com or picardstudios.ca for further dates and information.