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Awardee: Jon Jolles

Moving Image, 2000

Jon Jolles is a Baltimore based filmmaker, actor, and artist. His previous film, _Your Montana Vacation Tour of the World’s Wonders Starts with this Coupon_, was shown at the Sundance and Telluride film festivals among others, and won an award at the Rosebud Film Festival in Washington, DC. He has appeared in several independent features and shorts and commercials and can be seen in the short film _Cleave_ by Hollie Lavenstein. He works in the film and television business doing line producing, production managing, location managing and art direction, for a variety of studio and independent films, music videos and television commecials. He is on the board of program advisors for the Maryland Film Festival and was a regular contributor to the online magazine UnoMas.com. He plays a pretty mean harmonica.

Project: Levels

Man’s drive to bring order out of chaos prevails in this odd, short, wordless comedy from Jon Jolles. In a strangely desolate town, a mysterious man arrives carrying a suitcase. He enters a restaurant, populated with odd and grizzled faces, and sits; the waitress and he exchange strange and fertile glances. Is there something between them? What’s in the suitcase? How come no one is talking? What follows is an exercise in obsession as a wobbly table in a surreal eatery proves to be our nameless hero’s white whale. "I like the idea that that which drives us also contains that which will kill us; each joy, each happiness, each accomplishment, each triumph holds the seeds to it’s own destruction. I’m not exactly sure why I like this, but I do. It’s sort of...comforting," says Jolles.