Local Sightings 2023 – Accept the Mystery: Experimental Shorts [Hybrid]

Watch online: Sep. 15–24

Watch in person: Sep. 24 at 6:30pm

In-person tickets >

$14 General Admission
$10 Student/Child/Senior
$7 Member

Virtual tickets >

$5 – $25 Sliding Scale

Festival passes >

$60 – $150 Sliding Scale

VIRTUAL, IN-PERSON, and HYBRID (virtual AND in-person) Festival Passes and Individual Tickets are available!

Click for Accessibility Info

Ticketing, concessions, cinemas, restrooms, and our public edit lab are located on Northwest Film Forum’s ground floor, which is wheelchair accessible. All doors in Northwest Film Forum are non-motorized, and may require staff assistance to open. Our upstairs workshop room is not wheelchair accessible.

The majority of seats in our main cinema are 21″ wide from armrest to armrest; some seats are 19″ wide. We are working on creating the option of removable armrests!

We have a limited number of assistive listening devices available for programs hosted in our larger theater, Cinema 1. These devices are maintained by the Technical Director, and can be requested at the ticketing and concessions counter. Also available at the front desk is a Sensory Kit you can borrow, which includes a Communication Card, noise-reducing headphones, and fidget toys.

The Forum does NOT have assistive devices for the visually impaired, and is not (yet) a scent-free venue. Our commitment to increasing access for our audiences is ongoing, and we welcome all public input on the subject!

If you have additional specific questions about accessibility at our venue, please contact our Patron Services Manager at maria@nwfilmforum.org. Our phone number (206-329-2629) is voicemail-only, but we check it often.

Made possible due to a grant from Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, in partnership with Sensory Access, our Sensory Access document presents a visual and descriptive walk-through of the NWFF space. View it in advance of attending an in-person event at bit.ly/nwffsocialnarrativepdf, in order to prepare yourself for the experience.

⚠️ Covid-19 Policies ⚠️

NWFF patrons will be required to wear masks that cover both nose and mouth while in the building. Disposable masks are available at the door for those who need them. We are not currently checking vaccination cards. Recent variants of COVID-19 readily infect and spread between individuals regardless of vaccination status.

Read more about NWFF’s policies regarding cleaning, masks, and capacity limitations here.


(67 min TRT)

These poetic experiments incorporate a range of materials and techniques – newspaper collage and hand-painted film, 16mm and Super8 – to interrogate landscape, time, relationships, family history, and other great mysteries of human existence. The program concludes with a short produced by participants in Echo Park Film Center’s two-day found footage workshop.

Header photo credit: 47°38’51″N, 122°18’04″W Summer Solstice, dir. Foteini Tina Jacobson


FAQ: How do I watch online?
FAQ: How do I watch in-person?
  • Purchase your ticket through Brown Paper Tickets; come to the show!
  • You can also purchase a ticket on the day of the screening at Northwest Film Forum’s box office (1515 12th Ave, Seattle).
  • If you have purchased a Hybrid or In-Person-Only Festival Pass, we’ll be able to look you up at Will Call by the name you purchased under.

Co-presented with Engauge Experimental Film Festival (Nov. 1–4, 2023)

The Engauge Experimental Film Festival, presented annually at NWFF by Interbay Cinema Society, celebrates the art of analog experimental filmmaking and showcases a wide variety of experimental techniques. Only films that originate on celluloid film are eligible for the festival. Most films are presented as digital transfers, but the majority of film programs also include 16mm and 35mm film prints. Each festival has at least one featured artist; the 2023 festival features a centenary celebration of Harry Smith, with live music by cellist Lori Goldston and friends.

Interbay Cinema Society‘s mission is to provide material support for filmmakers working experimentally with celluloid film. We support emerging and established filmmakers through the grant and our festival, and we encourage new filmmakers with our educational initiative. Our ultimate goal is to foster more work on celluloid and to help offset the enormous costs of making film work available in high quality digital formats.

Films in this program:

I Thought the World of You

(Kurt Walker, Vancouver, BC, 2022, 17 min, in English) Seattle premiere!

The speculative tale of Canadian outsider musician Lewis and the belated discovery of his 1983 album L’Amour. A love story composed in myth and song. Trailer >

Spit It Out

(Melina Kiyomi Coumas, Portland, OR, 2023, 3 min, in English) World premiere!

An experimental short that explores the filmmaker’s lifelong struggle with a speech impediment. Shot on super 8mm film. Trailer >


(Max Kraushaar & Chelsea Werner-Jatzke, Seattle, WA, 2023, 3 min, in English) World premiere!

An exercise in commitment, this video poem is a collaboration between wife and husband. The outcome is a true love poem, full of the fear, doubt, and hesitation that comes with the willingness to commit to someone, to become family.


(Ruth C. Hayes, Olympia, WA, 2023, 4 min, in English)

An animated work of agit-prop against the end of Roe and the evisceration of women’s rights to choose.

47°38'51"N, 122°18'04"W Summer Solstice

(Foteini Tina Jacobson, US, 2023, 12 min, in English) World premiere!

Expressions of landscape, seasonality, precipitation and a fluid zoom in and out of time-scales create this dynamic portrait of a PNW moment. Phytography, cyanotype, and collage are applied to 16mm film and run at varying speeds, interlaced with found audio of sporting events and poetic stanzas that invite a contemplative state.


(peter j. vogt, Seattle, WA, 2022, 9 min, in English) US premiere!

Accidental symphonies of Berlin.

everything circles back to you

(Nat Hwang, Seattle, WA, 2023, 4 min, in English)

This poem is built from six conversations with my queer and trans friends about family, love, and care.

refrigerator hum

(jade wong, WA, 2023, 6 min, in English & Mandarin with English subtitles)

Experiments in reanimating intergenerational, collective memory.

Echo Park Film Center workshop film

A film produced by the students of Local Sightings 2023’s 16mm workshop, “16mm Found Footage Fiesta,” with instructor Lisa Marr of Echo Park Film Center. The workshop was produced through a collaboration of Echo Park Film Center, Interbay Cinema Society, and Northwest Film Forum. Students with a broad range of experience levels and artistic backgrounds came together to learn about using found footage, direct animation, emulsion lifts, and editing to transform existing film loops into something entirely their own.

Still credit: Brialynn Massie

Festival Directory

⚠️ Please note: NWFF patrons will be required to wear masks that cover both nose and mouth while in the building. We are not currently checking vaccination cards.

Presented by Seattle’s Northwest Film Forum, the 26th Annual Local Sightings Film Festival is a virtual-and-in-person showcase of creative communities from throughout the Pacific Northwest. The 2023 program, which runs from September 15–24, features a competitive selection of curated short film programs and feature films, inviting regional artists to experiment, break, and remake popular conceptions around filmmaking and film exhibition.

Local Sightings champions emerging and established talent, supports the regional film industry, and promotes diverse media as a critical tool for public engagement.

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Northwest Film Forum
1515 12th Ave,

Seattle, WA 98122

206 329 2629

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