Tisch School of the Arts Master of Professional Sciences, May 2013 Interactive Telecommunications Program
Luisa Covaria (luisacovaria.com) believes that interactive multimedia is one of the most powerful tools for social change. At age sixteen, Luisa was awarded a scholarship to represent Colombia at the United World College of India. There, she worked at a community TV channel with driven individuals, who used the channel as a tool to protect their cultural identity by incorporating it into the educational system. During this experience, she observed that film production prompted the group to learn about their community, and pushed them to articulate their needs and goals. This experience brought Luisa to combine her passions- filmmaking and social development.
In the past seven years, Luisa has developed video projects and made films with youth in Colombia, Jamaica, Nicaragua, Uruguay, the United States and China. She focuses on working with youth since she believes they are natural agents of change in society. Through this work, Luisa has observed a pattern that prevents socio-economic development- marginalized youth from around the world face a lack of education and access to participate in media, which often prevents them from affecting and changing their communities and the world. Luisa realized that while video production was effective at empowering youth, the videos were less successful at reaching audiences and engaging the global community to act.
In recent years, Luisa has been focusing on establishing global platforms for distribution of social multimedia, which is creative, versatile and accessible to a diverse audience. As part of this effort, Luisa co-founded The Melting Iceberg Collective (MIC) in 2009. MIC is an international artist collective that uses creative multimedia to call attention to social and environmental issues. MIC's latest project is the launching of the first immigrant film festival in Queens, The Other Side Film Festival. The festival opens a space for the immigrant community to express, call attention to and discuss their reality through audiovisual content. Throughout the year, MIC coordinates a series of video and interactive technology workshops for the immigrant community in Queens.
Luisa also develops interactive outreach campaigns in order to maximize the social impact of documentaries and to call attention to pressing issues around the world. She is working in partnership with Veritas Partnership to develop online campaigns for films aiming to end world hunger and examining the success of the AIDS campaign. Luisa has also been commissioned to create the multimedia and interaction design for a series of video installations that analyze Korea's historic conflicts. The exhibit showed in NYC and went to Seoul in October 2012.
During her graduate studies at the Interactive Telecommunications Program, Luisa developed online and physical platforms that both instigate people to produce media which voice their worldview, and chronicle their processes. Luisa hopes to establish a multimedia center in Bogota, Colombia. This center would serve marginalized youth, inspire them to use multimedia as a tool for social change, and provide them with an outlet through which to share their experiences globally.