SFF, Ringling Relish Creative Partnership



The Sarasota Film Festival on Tuesday unveiled new poster art for 2016, built around artwork by Ringling College of Art and Design students Gisselle Tirse and Nikelle Mackey. The images will be on display in the streets of Sarasota when banners promoting the festival are hung downtown on Feb. 20, but the work may be most important in symbolizing a connection between two high-profile players in the regional film industry. “We see Ringing as one of our most important strategic partners,” said SFF Programming Director Michael Dunaway. 

Ringing President Larry Thompson said the partnership also shows the success of The Collaboratory, an initiative of the school designed to ensure all students are able to develop work experience with real world clients. “The idea was really to help transform the concept of experiential learning,” he said. So students have been able to participate in design projects for both international brands like General Motors and local entities like SFF. And while the school still works to get students in appropriate internships, these jobs provide experience even if students don’t have the means to work off campus or to spend a term in a different community.

In this instance, the festival in October reached out to the college to partner on developing a new art concept to brand the event this year. Following a two-weekend brainstorming session, a group of eight students with majors ranging from Illustration to Ad Design was formed. That eventually resulted in the work by Tirse and Mackey being selected for the festival’s banners, playbills, mailings and sponsorship ads. “The Sarasota Film Festival could not be more pleased with the result of our partnership with the Ringling College of Art and Design,” said Mark Famiglio, president of the Sarasota Film Festival. “This is a world-renowned art school and the students presented us with exemplary works to choose from." 

Shortly, more Ringings students will benefit from this synergy as well, with some submitting trailers for consideration to run before the start of films throughout the festival, which runs this year from April 1-10. 

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