THESIS

A CONJURING IN THE GYRE

  • A Conjuring in the Gyre

    A Conjuring In The Gyre is a futuristic folktale about Lehlia, a young outlier who lives on an isolated island in the middle of a depleted Pacific Ocean. Her people have long suffered from the devastating reaches of modernization and climate change. Their connection to the natural world and their ancient traditions all but disappeared. When a catastrophic wave wipes away everything Lehlia has ever known, the strong-willed 12-year old is forced to flee her drowning island and embark on a journey that will send her straight into the jaws of the mythic Great Pacific Gyre, a toxic vortex thriving on the waste of a throwaway world. Lehlia will need to call on the wisdom of her ancestors to escape the onslaught of chaos that the modern world has stirred up, and ultimately will have to find harmony between the two to survive.

    Anelisa Garfunkel is a filmmaker based in Brooklyn. Her career as a storyteller began over fifteen years ago producing educational films on the tiny island of Pohnpei in the Federated States of Micronesia. Since then she has written, directed and produced television, documentaries, webseries, and short films in the US and abroad. Although the medium of this story is a bit of a departure from Anelisa’s previous work as a filmmaker, the graphic illustrations and lyrical style of the narrative draw heavily on her cinematic roots. Anelisa’s stories are born from a life spent climbing, diving, exploring, and adventuring around the world.

    Personal Website: www.anelisagarfunkel.com

Anelisa Garfunkel

Anelisa Garfunkel is a writer, filmmaker and educator.  Her career as a storyteller began over fifteen years ago producing educational films on the tiny island of Pohnpei in the Federated States of Micronesia.  Since then she has written, produced, and directed commercials, documentaries, scripted films, webseries, digital content and more. Her personal work has been included in festivals, screenings, and exhibitions in the US and abroad. She has produced content for National Geographic and the History Channel, GreatCall, The Nature Conservancy, and Unicef, to name a few. Her documentaries about disability, One Hundred Steps, and We Will Ride are often used to teach disability rights in university classrooms and advocacy organizations. Her short film, “Cunda’s Pasteles” premiered as part of the New York Women in Film and Television 2018 Immigrant Stories Series. Anelisa also writes short stories, essays and screenplays including an illustrated novella entitled, A Conjuring in The Gyre, that she also illustrated.  She has a BS in Journalism from Boston University and an MFA in Visual Storytelling from The School of Visual Arts. She has taught filmmaking in the SVA MPS Directing program, The Maine Media Workshops, Northshore Community College, and the College of Micronesia. She currently resides in Colorado where she is co-owner of Rope Swing Stories, a multimedia production company and works as a writer and producer for Deloitte Digital.  Anelisa’s stories are born from a life spent exploring, climbing, diving, and adventuring around the world. Anelisa's mentor was Samantha Gorman.