BCS on Mother Jones

Bull City Summer graces the cover of the Mother Jones website on the last day of August 2014, the same day the exhibits came down at CAM and NCMA. Excuse me for waxing a little nostalgic…

Check out the article here.

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Cooling Tent #1-6

As part of the Bull City Summer exhibit at CAM Raleigh, I contributed a series of photos from the Durham Bulls’ Cooling Tent. At the edge of the concourse behind left field, the tent provides fun, thrills and relief for hundreds of children each season.

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What’s In a Name… (or, The Meaning of Rock Fish Stew)

Since 2013 I’ve been working at Rock Fish Stew, developing documentary projects with Sam Stephenson.

We put a lot of thought into the company and how to explain it to others. But then it occurred to us, perhaps the best way to understand Rock Fish Stew is to taste it.

So we asked our friend Chef Ricky Moore over at Saltbox Seafood Joint in Durham to cook us up a pot. His approach to recipes reminds us a whole lot of how we feel about documentaries – find the right ingredients then bring them to a perfect simmer.

The Education of Ida Owens




Commissioned by the Duke Unversity Graduate School, this 30­-minute documentary follows Ida Owens from her upbringing in rural North Carolina to her years at Duke University, where she became the first African-­American woman to receive a Ph.D. When Ida reflects on the complicated cultural waters of her era, questions about identity, memory, and social activism surface. This personal exploration of Southern history and the Civil Rights movement brings to the forefront the past and its lingering effects.

Leaving Traces

In 2013, a team of artists converged on the Durham Bulls Athletic Park to document the legendary minor league team’s 2013 season. The project was called Bull City Summer, and resulted in two exhibits, one at the North Carolina Museum of Art and the other at the Contemporary Art Museum in Raliegh.

“Leaving Traces,” a feature documentary, follows the documentarians – including renowned photographers Alec Soth, Hiroshi Watanabe, Hank Willis Thomas, Kate Joyce, Frank Hunter, Leah Sobsey, and Alex Harris, and writer Adam Sobsey – as they confront the challenges of finding something new in a baseball park. While techniques and output vary, this diverse group is united by baseball’s (and photography’s) unique experience with time. The slow, measured movements often hide the roiling drama beneath. By interweaving stories about process and craft, “Leaving Traces” evokes baseball’s atmosphere and captures the struggle to make the unseen visible.

So far the film has been accepted into the On Photography Film Festival, and will stream worldwide on September 20th.

Following is a trailer for the film.



And below are some clips and outtakes.

Photographer Kate Joyce walks us through the literal journey entering the ballpark and the metaphorical journey of readying herself for a shoot:

Photographer Leah Sobsey recollects being at the park as a kid and the thrill of photographing people today:

Kate Joyce uses photography to express the vulnerable side of baseball players:

They Will Rest High on the Mountain

Dee and Bernice Mitchell live in Elk Park, North Carolina — the same remote mountain community where they were born. They have lived a full life there, making a solid living and raising three children. Now they are enjoying watching their great-grandchildren grow up and play in the same fields they once did. Like the mountains, they are worn by time but their belief in family and generosity stands strong. On the eve of their 60th wedding anniversary, they are at peace with the end – whenever it comes. And they have faith that their love will live on.

They Will Rest High on the Mountain documents this stage in their life.



Photo by Vanessa Patchett

Photo by Vanessa Patchett

A documentarian and photographer, Ivan Weiss currently serves as a partner at the Durham, NC-based documentary production company Rock Fish Stew. In 2013, Weiss joined the Bull City Summer team and produced a feature-length documentary, which was exhibited at CAM Raleigh from May 22-August 31, 2014. Recently, Weiss directed The Education of Ida Owens, a 30-minute documentary chronicling the life of the first African-American woman to receive a Ph.D. from Duke University. The film premiered at the Nasher Art Museum in May 2014. At that time he completed an MA in visual communication at the journalism school at UNC-Chapel Hill, for which he was awarded a Roy H. Park fellowship. In 2008, Weiss received an MA from the London Film School in the screenwriting program. Previously, he traveled to Russia on a Fulbright grant, after which he worked as a journalist covering the oil industry in Moscow. As an undergraduate at Haverford College, he double majored in English and Russian. Despite his Russian-sounding name, he was born and raised in the Midwest.

Check out press for Rock Fish Stew here.