a documentary series by artists about artists in action

Artists Engaged
is a series of weekly episodes chronicling the work artists throughout the U.S. are doing in their communities and in response to the dynamics of the world. This includes brief profiles of artists in their words, video montages of murals, and collaborative music around the country. The ten episodes will be made freely streamable on Vimeo, with the first one debuting live in Flagstaff, AZ, in late August, and the last being available in late October, just before the 2024 US elections.

This work has developed out of years of perpetual touring by peripatetic artists Thollem and ACVilla, who have lived on the road with their work continuously since 2008. Zigzagging the U.S. (except during the height of the pandemic), they have been performing and participating in a wide variety of artists communities and centers from libraries, concert halls, independent radio stations, film houses to major museums, DIY spots, universities, jazz clubs, rock clubs, squats, art galleries and more.
Without a home to return to, this lifestyle and creative practice naturally creates opportunities to spend significant time within a spectrum of artistic communities. They have utilized these opportunities to document and collaborate with artists across disciplines as well as with many of the people behind the scenes, developing a unique insight into inner workings, intentionsand philosophies of the creators engaged in myriad ways. Throughout this time, Thollem and ACVilla continue to document the work of others, both visually and through interviews and journals, covering a wide swath of those involved in making things happen. 

Through Artists Engaged weekly series, viewers become part of an overflowing spring of positivity, perseverance and empowerment.

Interviews with:
Jane Rigler, America Meredith, Cork Marcheschi, Francis Wong, Kio Griffith, Bob Ostertag, Esteban Zuñiga Ruiz, Terry Riley, Orlando Greenhill, Dylan Tenorio, John Schiek, Melinda Matson Spina, Cipriano Vigil, Chuck Hersch, Interference Series (Owen Davis, Rob Wallace), Hans Fjellstad, Germaul Yusef Barnes, Cheryl Leonard, Patrick McDonnell, Janet Beveridge Bean, Gene Johnson, Carmina Escobar, Davu Seru, Mike Lastra, Jennifer Wyman, James Falzone, Benjamin J. Fawks, Jason Finkelman, Cynthia Oliver, Michael Wimberly, Nani Chacon, Philip Greenlief, Glenn Wynant, WFMU, Raven Chacon, Stephen Tromboli, Arrington de Dionyso, Peter Ganushkin, Nicholas Taplin, Merlin Coleman, Gary Singh, Rent Romus, Renée Baker, ROVA Saxophone Quartet (Bruce Ackley, Larry Ochs, Jon Raskin, Steve Adams), Amy Reed, Marc Masters, Dereck Higgins, Mary Prescott, and more.

Murals of Nani Chacon
The related feature-length film directed by ACVilla, Murals of Nani Chacon, focuses on this Diné/Chicana artist, the organizations that have brought her into their communities, and her large scale public works that ACVilla collected while traveling with Thollem throughout the US.