On The Cusp, Longlist - Personal Project


Christian Padron

Scheme Engine

The Process film, created in collaboration with my good friend and artist Samora Pinderhughes, got us both through the past year. It got us through the multitudes of deaths; it got us through the quarantine period; and, as we edited it, it became a tribute to this moment of international Black power and the heaviness and anguish so many of us feel as we battle the forces of the state that murder our people in so many ways. It’s difficult to articulate what this song and this film mean to me. I hope it moves you, and manifests a space within you to hold yourself and hold others in care. That is what we can hope for. Carry it with you. Sit with it. Use it in moments that call for healing and solidarity.

Christian Padron is a filmmaker and photographer based in Harlem. A Parsons photographic scholar and MFA graduate, Christian’s work celebrates culture while addressing our complicated status in society at large. Christian’s brand work includes projects with the NBA, Google, Visa, and Spotify. For Droga5, Christian directed “The Reckoning,” a spot for the wellness app Shine, featuring meditations voiced by mostly Black womxn campaigning for a more inclusive world of mental health support. The spot was an Ad Age Editor’s Pick. Christian’s film “Process,” with composer Samora Pinderhughes, is about grieving and loss in our tumultuous times, amidst the pandemic and premature death caused by systems of white supremacy. It is an official selection of the Blackstar Film Fest. In his follow up collaboration with Pinderhughes, Christian directed “Grief,” commissioned by Carnegie Hall for their “Voices of Hope” festival. The short film featuring documentary and musical performance tells stories of victims of the prison industrial complex, showing their humanity in the midst of these conditions. For Spotify, Christian wrote and directed “Music Is Black History,” a film highlighting six under-celebrated moments and figures in history, including The Harlem Cultural Festival, the Chitlin Circuit Black of the Jim Crow era, modern Afro-Latinx hip-hop, and artists such as disco queen Sylvester and rock’n roll pioneer Rosetta Tharpe. Christian wrote and directed "The Veil” for the Magnum Foundation. The 16mm short film is a lush portrait of contemporary Harlem that evokes philosopher W.E.B. Dubois’s early twentieth century concept of “the veil,” a metaphor for the spectre of segregation in America.