As the newest group of Pacific Islanders to arrive in the Hawaiian Islands, Micronesians aspire to the same dreams as every new immigrant group before them. Similarly, many face discrimination and poverty as they struggle to build new lives. Despite these obstacles, higher education remains the key to unlocking the American dream for themselves and their families. Crossing Spaces is a series of three documentary shorts profiling three Micronesian women in Honolulu as they grapple with the challenges of higher education and work to enact meaningful change for their families and communities.
Lola Quan Bautista - Director/Producer
Lola is an associate professor at the Center for Pacific Islands Studies at the University of Hawai‘i, Mānoa. For over twenty years, she has been doing research on Micronesian migration, settlement in urban spaces, and ongoing connections between diasporic communities and their home island nations. She has two publications that deal closely with the topics of the proposed film series: a book titled Steadfast Movement around Micronesia: Satowan Enlargements beyond Migration (2010) and an article in the journal City and Society titled “Building Sense Out of Households: Migrants from Chuuk (Re)creating Local Space in an Urban Setting” (2011). Especially after directing her film Breadfruit and Open Spaces (2013), Lola has become increasingly interested in promoting social justice through films as well as developing classroom curricula.
Shirley Thompson - Producer/Editor
Shirley has more than thirty years of experience as documentary editor, writer, and producer. She is best known for the PBS documentaries she has edited, most recently: Kū Kanaka (2016), Winning Girl (2014), and Pidgin: The Voice of Hawai‘i (2008). Shirley collaborated with director Lola Quan Bautista as producer and editor of Breadfruit and Open Spaces (2013). Shirley recently co-produced, and edited Finding KUKAN, a feature documentary that screened at the Hawai‘i International Film Festival & DOCNYC in 2016 and CAAMFest San Francisco in 2017. As a Latina and a daughter of immigrants, she is committed to filmmaking that builds bridges across cultures and communities. She is based in Honolulu, Hawai‘i.
Valerie Narte - Director of Photography
Valerie is a filmmaker and photographer born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaiʻi. In 2012, she graduated from the University of Hawaiʻi, Mānoa with a BA in Creative Media with a focus on cinematic narrative production. She currently works as the Filmmaker-in-Residence and Documentarian for Hawaiʻi Women in Filmmaking. Her passion for visual media began at age seven when she began taking art lessons at the Honolulu Museum of Art School. At Kalani High School, Valerie developed an interest in creative writing and independent films which inspired her to write and direct her own stories. Her films express her unique humor. One film, called Library: Special Division (2012), focuses on a sexually-repressed book detective who must track down a pair of kidnappers in search of the secret to time travel.