Private Project


A young woman completes a onerous task.

"In Kevin Pontuti’s Pescare, a rich visual poem that maintains a patient focus on the starkly repetitive motion of a woman gutting fish, the long tradition of still life painting is captivatingly brought to animation. The contradiction inherent in that thought is mediated by the length of the film maker’s gaze which lingers on a simple action, and allows the viewer to regard at length the details of texture, color, light, and mood. The last frames of the film finally resolve the scene into true still life, when the woman, in whose work we have become absorbed, leaves the scene and the viewer is left alone to contemplate- in Baroque lighting- the fish, their viscera, the knife, the stone slab, the silence, and the sudden absence of human presence. The film, in essence, fulfills an absent action that precedes and follows the scenes we see in paintings and by doing so deepens the possibilities for both meaning and ambiguity. "

  • Kevin Pontuti
    Onere, North Passage
  • Kevin Pontuti
    Onere, North Passage
  • Peter Galante
  • Rosella Vasta
  • Kevin M Pontuti
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Experimental, Short
  • Runtime:
    8 minutes 40 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    May 27, 2016
  • Production Budget:
    1,500 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • The Art of Slow: Contemporary Contemplative Cinema
    September 17, 2016
  • 2016 London Experimental Film Festival
    United Kingdom
    October 17, 2016
  • 2016 LA Underground Film Forum
    Los Angeles
    United States
    November 19, 2016
    Best of Slow Cinema Award
  • 2017 UW-Stout Faculty Exhibition
    United States
    March 17, 2017
  • 2017 Montreal Underground Film Festival
    United States
    May 20, 2017
  • Cinemaway - Ukraine
    November 4, 2017
  • Shorts à la Carte
    November 20, 2017
Distribution Information
  • Tao Films
    Country: France
    Rights: Video on Demand
Director Biography - Kevin Pontuti

Kevin Pontuti is an artist and educator based in the USA. He received his MFA from Syracuse University in 1993 then moved to California where he founded the Los Angeles-based production company Studio P Inc. His image-making expertise and collaborative spirit attracted many top artists and designers to his studio. In 2009, Pontuti accepted a professorship at the University of Wisconsin-Stout where he now serves as program director. His teaching and creative practice include the moving image, cinematic arts and transmedia studies. Pontuti’s feature film, NORTH PASSAGE premiered at the 2014 Flyway Film Festival. His short film, ONERE premiered at the 2016 Duluth-Superior Film Festival.

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Director Statement

The film PESCARE is the second in a series of short films that use magical realism to explore themes related to sin, remorse, self-worth and redemption.

Structured as vignettes (Cantos) these poetic shorts explore religious themes and notions of magic, spirituality and witchcraft in relation to the psychological landscape of the European middle ages. These vignettes also form the backstory and psychological world of THE BURNING BRANCHES, a feature-length project about a fictitious pagan sculptor—a woman living in the wild—who is persecuted for witchcraft.

We had a great premiere of ONERE—at the Duluth-Superior Film Festival in June. Duluth is a wonderful city with a great film and music scene.

ONERE was also selected for the Altered Esthetics Film Festival and will be screening on July 28th at the Southern Theater in Minneapolis. Please join us if you are in the area. The AE Film Fest specializes in experimental and art cinema so it's a great fit for us. We're thrilled to be part of the event. More info here:

We just completed PESCARE, the second film in our Poetry of Penance project. Production of the 9-minute film took place in January as part of my residency at Villa Pieve in Corciano, Italy. The opening image comes from Rocca Maggiore, one of two primary castles in the historic city of Assisi where Saint Francis is buried. We are currently exploring exhibition opportunities and festivals for PESCARE.

Writer/ Critic —Dr. Peter B. Olson has been working on a substantial critical essay entitled Onere; or, the Unconcealment of the Unsayable. He's been kind enough to provide us with an initial draft of the paper which can be read here:

The Leader Telegram from Eau Claire, Wisconsin ran a flattering entertainment piece this week about my project(s). The article will undoubtedly generate local and regional momentum and help move things forward. The article can be read here: Leader Telegram.