Director Statement

Director’s Statement from Jesse Wright, Director of Pearl Of A Panther

Life imitates art imitates life. As a multi disciplinary artist I thrive at the opportunity to combine materials and mediums. As a son of a Jamaican mother and an American father, mixing things together is in my very blood. It’s instinctual. So it was with “Pearl Of A Panther”. Being an artist and being married to one it only seemed natural to throw my family into the mix. We're fully aware of the fight for time to lift up worthwhile issues while also fighting for time to lift each other. Throw in children and you’re really in for it.

Art imitating life. Life with all of it’s beauty, poetry, music, politics and musings on faith and purpose mixed together. And on our race towards purpose, we artists who so passionately scream out for the world to see things that need attention, so often ourselves lose sight of our most intimate relationships. Making this film in community was a timely reminder of this. For that I’m grateful.

Although fully scripted, once cameras started rolling, it was “script as diving board”. Here we have the mixture and texture of various voices offering distinct perspectives as told through the cast of established and emerging artists and figures playing themselves or some form of themselves. Here we have the mixture and tension of priorities regarding family and creative outlets. Here we have the mixture and diverse colors of various cities and cultures as seen through these glimpses of their people and architecture. From a blown out hot block in Paterson to an artist’s studio in Newark. From a palatial museum in Brooklyn surrounded by sculptures and cherry blossoms to the noisy subway below it. From the wandering High Line in Manhattan to a curiosity of a guitar or record shop tucked away in some corner. All captured in sound, vision and dream as only film can.

Thank you.