Claire Andrade-Watkins

Professor
Claire Andrade-Watkins, PhD is an interdisciplinary story teller who creates media rich born-digital narratives from and about the Africana Diaspora.

Historian/filmmaker Claire Andrade-Watkins, PhD, a second generation Cape Verdean American, is an interdisciplinary scholar of African and African American history with a focus on Cape Verdean American history, Post-colonial French and Portuguese-speaking African cinema, cinemas of the Africana diaspora, and Black American film/filmmakers. She is the founding Director of the Fox Point Cape Verdean Project, a community-based research initiative created in 2007, and President of SPIA Media Productions, Inc., a production and distribution company founded in 1998 specializing in media from the Africana Diaspora.   Dr. Andrade-Watkins is the first academic tenure track professor of color in the college, and the first Full Professor of color in Visual and Media Arts before migrating to the Institute  for Liberal Arts & Interdisciplinary Studies.

Academic awards include: 1995–1996 Fulbright Scholar in Cape Verde, and a 1997 American Philosophical Society grant. She has published in Society for Visual Anthropology, Research in African Literature, The Independent Film and Video Monthly, American Historical Review, and CinémAction. Chronological and concurrent academic appointments at Brown University include:  Africana Studies, Visiting Scholar, 2019–2021; Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice, Visiting Scholar, 2015–2017; Swearer Center, Distinguished Community Practitioner & Senior Fellow, Fall 2017; Swearer Center for Public Service, Fellow, 2008–2015; and Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, Visiting Scholar, 2007–2014.

Official festival selections of documentary and experimental films include: Hot Docs(Toronto), Athens International Film&Video Festival, Black Maria Film Festival, FESTin, and FESPACO. Professional recognition includes: RISCA Fellowship in Film & Video, 2017; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, Our Rhode: 30 Years of Cinema By and About Cape Verdean Rhode Islanders, 2016;  Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellow in Film, 2009. Competitively awarded grants for documentary include: LEF Foundation, and several grants from both the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities and Rhode Island Council for the Humanities. The SPIA Media collection of documentaries about the history of Cape Verde and the Fox Point Cape Verdean community is on Kanopy, a leading streaming educational content video service.

Current digital archival projects in the emerging field of digital humanities include OUR RHODE, a beta digital mapping/chronological timeline that reconstitutes the history of Rhode Island's first Cape Verdean neighborhood in the Fox Point waterfront area of Providence.

 

About

  • Marlboro Institute for Liberal Arts & Interdisciplinary Studies
    Since 1982

Education

B.A., Simmons College
M.A., Boston University
Ph.D., Boston University

Creative Works

Some Kind of Funny Porto Rican? A Cape Verdean American Story (film)

2006

Cape Verde Independence, July 5 and 6 1975 ( 2005, 12'29")

2005

A documentary from rare archival footage on the Cape Verde Independence day celebrations. Footage part of a seventy hours of ½” reel-to-reel video shot in Cape Verde during independence.

Hi, Neighbor (2011, 13")

2011

A little girl who lost her home to urban renewal asks her wealthy neighbor, “Why?” A classic story of American immigrants and what happens when society displaces them. Non-fiction/memory conversation.

Serenata de Amor (2013, 15")

2013

A Cape Verdean love story told in song, this musical theater/music video is a period piece, set in the 1940s on the island of Brava, Cape Verde, and is a tribute and homage to the morna of Cape Verde. Brava is the island renowned for legendary composers of the morna including Eugenio Tavares who is widely considered the Mozart of Cape Verdean music.

Working the Boats: Masters of the Craft (63")

2016

A six-part documentary webisode that highlights the golden years of Local 1329 of the ILA (International Longshoremen’s Association), founded in Providence, Rhode Island in 1933, and the first predominantly Cape Verdean labor union in New England. This is the second in a trilogy of documentaries about the Fox Point Cape Verdean community.

North American Premiere, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA

Awards & Honors

Fellowship in Film & Video

2017

RISCA (Rhode Island State Council on the Arts), Fellowship in Film & Video, Working the Boats: Masters of the Craft

Massachusetts Cultural Council, Artist Fellowship, Film

2009

Fulbright Research Award

1996
1995–1996

Republic of Cape Verde, Indigenous Cinema, 1930–1975

American Philosophical Society Research Award

1997

Republic of Cape Verde, Indigenous Cinema, 1930–1975

Official selection, Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Film Festival, Redux category

2020

Cape Verde Independence July 5 and 6, 1975 (USA, 12’29”)

A documentary from rare archival footage on the Cape Verde Independence day celebrations. Footage part of a seventy hours of ½” reel to reel video shot in Cape Verde during independence.

Official selection, FESTin - Festival de Cinema Itinerante da Língua Portuguesa Lisbon, Portugal

2014

Cape Verde Independence July 5 and 6, 1975 (USA, 12’29”)

A documentary from rare archival footage on the Cape Verde Independence day celebrations. Footage part of a seventy hours of ½” reel to reel video shot in Cape Verde during independence.

Black Maria Film Festival, Jury’s Choice (first prize)

2012

Hi, Neighbor (Ola Vizinho) (USA, 13 min). A little girl who lost her home to urban renewal asks her wealthy neighbor, ‘Why?” A classic story of American immigrants and what happens when society displaces them. Non-fiction/memory conversation.

Serenata de Amor (15"), festival listings

2015
2014-2015

Serenata de Amor (USA, 15 min)

A Cape Verdean love story told in song, this musical theater/music video is a period piece, set in the 1940s on the island of Brava, Cape Verde, and is a tribute and homage to the morna of Cape Verde. Brava is the island renowned for legendary composers of the morna including Eugenio Tavares who is widely considered the Mozart of Cape Verdean music.

2015, Oia! Festival, Sao Vicente, Cape Verde

2014, Roxbury International Film Festival

2014, Official Selection, Athens International Film & Video Festival (1,171 submissions)

2014, Showcase Selection, Lucerne International Film Festival

2014, Official Selection, Madrid International Film Festival, for Best Music in Film

World Premiere, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

2016

Our Rhode: 30 Years of Cinema by and about Cape Verdean Rhode Islanders, a thirty year retrospective of films by filmmaker Claire Andrade-Watkins