Shannon Silva teaching class

Shannon Silva, assistant professor
King Hall 102I | 910.962.2232 |

Curriculum Vitae


Shannon Silva is an Assistant Professor in the Film Studies Department. An experimental and documentary filmmaker, her principal interests include issues of gender and poverty, the connection between written, aural and visual arts, and community-building creative initiatives. She holds a BFA in Art from Texas State University and an MFA in Film and Video Production from the University of Iowa.

Her teaching experience includes: Documentary Film Production, Materials of 16mm Film, Film Festival Management and Introduction to Film Production, as well as workshops in stop-motion animation, optical printing and cameraless and hand-processed filmmaking techniques.

In addition to directing over 30 short films and videos, she has worked as Screenplay Competition Director for the Austin Film Festival and as Associate Producer for the 35mm feature Monster Hunter (Asylum Home Entertainment).

Her films have screened at festivals internationally and her community work includes co-founding Iowa City Microcinema, an organization dedicated to bringing visiting filmmakers and free filmmaking workshops to the eastern Iowa public.

In addition to teaching, she is currently co-supervising the UNCW Reel Girls Project: A joint filmmaking project between the Film Studies and Women's Studies programs in which college girls teach middle schools girls about making their own films, assessing media with a critical eye and telling their own stories. (


MKA: Buy, Buy Love, Buy, Buy Happiness (work-in-progress) Over the past twenty years the tween consumer market (food, music, technology, fashion, toys, etc.) has evolved from almost non-existent into a multibillion-dollar moneymaking machine. Using expert interviews (researchers, executives, marketers and actual tweens), historical research, animated reenactments and found footage, this feature length documentary will look closely, and critically, at the markets evolution and the role of Dualstar (Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen’s company) in the markets explosion.

29 Places I Once Called Home (20-minutes, 2006) This experimental documentary travels from motels and trailer parks along the east coast to a ranch house in suburban, small town Texas, exploring the multi-layered connections between poverty, frequent relocation, substance abuse, family violence and memory instability. Selected Screenings: Next Frame International Touring Film Festival (Premiered in Los Angeles, CA); 19th Annual Dallas Video Festival (Dallas, TX), FLEX ’06: Florida Experimental Film Festival (Gainesville, FL), Hearts and Minds Film Festival (Wilmington, DE), IC International Documentary Film Festival (Iowa City, IA)

And Happiness Everywhere (7 minutes, 2004) Shot on Super 8 and 16mm film, this four-month, intimate journal considers my conflicting emotions about being a newly married, thirty-something woman trying to negotiate between being an artist, being a wife, and, potentially, becoming a mother. Selected Screenings: Girl Fest (Honolulu, Hawaii), Athens Flicker Festival (Athens, GA), Hi Mom!8 (Chapel Hill, NC), Northern Lights Film Festival (Houghton, MI), Women in the Directors Chair (Chicago, IL), Ms. Films (Durham, NC), Milwaukee International Film Festival (Milwaukee, WI), Bearded Child Film Festival (Grand Rapids, MN)

To the Dead Girl, Thank You (3 minutes, 2004) A direct address video letter to the filmmaker's deceased great aunt. The video questions the importance of family resemblance, individual identity and having a sense of belonging. Selected Screenings: Vinegar Hill Film Festival (Charlotte, VA), IC International Documentary Festival (Iowa City, IA), Ms. Films (Durham, NC)

The Unbelievable Act of Totally Disappearing (5 minutes, 2003) Using animation, hand-manipulated film techniques and original home movie footage from the day I was first brought home from the hospital, this 16mm film explores physical, temporal and emotional family distance in the age of technology. Selected Screenings: Brooklyn Underground Film Festival, World Unity Festival, Neuer Standort Gallery (Vienna, Austria), 111 Minna Gallery (San Francisco), Axiom Theater (Houston), Chaos Studios (Colorado Springs, CO), Flicker Festival (Chapel Hill, NC and Austin, TX)

Color Coded (3 minutes, 2001) brief fragments of time are captured on film, hand-painted, and hand-manipulated to create a disjointed, somewhat unnerving travel log of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and Oregon. Selected Screenings: Cinematexas (Austin, TX), Exploded Cinema and Wimbeldon School of Art (London, England), Cinemaker Tour at UTEP (El Paso, TX), Minecine (Shreveport, LA), Motion Showcase at SXSW (Austin, TX)


Home Movies: Advertising, Everyday Tactics, and Obsolescence, 2004?Buy, Buy Love – Buy, Buy Happiness: Identifying with Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, 2002


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