100 Creatives

100 Creatives 2012: Mary Lampe, Executive Director of Southwest Alternate Media Project (SWAMP)

Mary Lampe knows what it takes to make a film. Prior to her current position as executive director of SWAMP (Southwest Alternate Media Project), Lampe had made more than 30 short film projects while working at an art museum. Making a film requires passion, dedication, fiscal sponsorship and patience, and SWAMP offers plenty of support for independent filmmakers. Through her efforts, Lampe has helped both emerging and experienced filmmakers raise over $2.5 million for their film projects. "We work with whoever comes to the door," she says.

What she does? Lampe develops and promotes short films and videos by working directly with the filmmakers themselves.

Lampe serves as executive producer of the Territory series, which has the honor of being the longest-running public television showcase of independent film and video in the country.

Additionally, Lampe attends festivals in which she serves on juries and panels, such as the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen and Clermont-Ferrand's International Short Film Festival. She is often invited to and participates in roundtable discussions, having just returned from the Worldwide Short Film Festival in Toronto.

Why she likes it? She helps people realize their vision and share their stories creatively and with purpose. "It's really great to see filmmakers evolve, who are willing to continue to learn, and to refine their craft," says Lampe.

What inspires her? In one word: passion.

"People who are passionate about their work. Those who have a vision and are willing, able and constant enough to carry it through." She goes on to say that she enjoys seeing experienced filmmakers attend SWAMP's workshops because it shows their commitment and passion.

If not this, then what? "I have a lifelong love of the arts," she says. "I'm sure I would find something to do to be in the arts in some form or fashion." Perhaps a return to filmmaking?

If not here, then where? Naturally, Lampe wants to be where independent and short films thrive. "My fantasy place would be Paris. France is one of the most film-friendly countries in the world. People are standing in line buying tickets to short-film programs, and I'm going, 'Why isn't it like this in the United States?'"

What's next? The short-term focus is on the summer programs, like the seminar with Bruce Block and a moviemaking camp for teens. Beyond that, as SWAMP enters its 35th year, the goals are to review and re-evaluate the programs and to embrace new technology and tools.

More Creatives for 2012 (In order of most recently published; click here for the full page).

Nisha Gosar, Indian classical dancer Jeremy Wells, painter George Brock, theater teacher Radu Runcanu, painter Ariane Roesch, Mixed-Media Sandie Zilker, art jewelry maker Philip Hayes, actor Patrick Palmer, painter Ana Mae Holmes, Jewelry Designer John Tyson, actor Jerry Ochoa, violinist and filmmaker Raul Gonzalez, painter, sculptor, photographer Roy Williams, DJ of medieval music Laura Burlton, photographer David Peck, fashion designer Rebecca Udden, theater director Donae Cangelosi Chramosta, vintage designer handbag dealer Paul Fredric, author John Sparagana, photographer Damon Smith, musician and visual artist Geoff Winningham, photographer Johnathon Michael Espinoza, visual artist Jaemi Blair Loeb, conductor Katya Horner, photographer Johnathan Felton, artist Nicoletta Maranos, cosplayer Carol Simmons, hair stylist Joseph "JoeP" Palmore, actor, poet Greg Carter, director Kenn McLaughlin, theater director Justin Whitney, musician Antone Pham, tattoo artist Susie Silbert, crafts Lauralee Capelo, hair designer Marisol Monasterio, flamenco dancer Carmina Bell, promoter and DJ ReShonda Tate Billingsley, writer Kiki Lucas, choreographer and director J.J. Johnston, theater director Mary Margaret Hansen, artist Richard Tallent, photographer Viswa Subbaraman, opera director Emily Sloan, sculptor and performance artist Sonja Roesch, gallery owner Enrique Carreón-Robledo, conductor Sandy Ewen, musician Camella Clements, puppeteer Wade Wilson, gallery owner Magid Salmi, photographer Carl Williams, playwright

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Maryam Geramifar
Contact: Maryam Geramifar