Yvonne Welbon

Yvonne Welbon has written, directed and produced a number of independent films and videos.

Sisters in Cinema (2000-03)
The first documentary of its kind. It gives voice to African American women directors and serves to illuminate a history of independent filmmaking that has remained hidden for too long. In the summer of 1997, Welbon produced and directed a segment about her work-in-progress for Split Screen, a program about independent filmmakers produced by John Pierson. The segment highlighted the films of black women directors Eloyce Gist, Zora Neale Hurston, Julie Dash, Darnell Martin and Bridgett Davis. The Split Screen segment was cablecast on Bravo and the Independent Feature Channel.

The Taste of Dirt (2002)
A short narrative film which explores issues of race and class as experienced by 7-year-old African American girls on the school playground.

Living with Pride: Ruth Ellis @ 100 (1999)
In 1998 she was awarded grants from the Paul Robeson Fund for Independent Media, the Astraea National Lesbian Action Fund, and the Wexner Center for her film Living with Pride: Ruth Ellis @ 100. Ruth Ellis was born on July 23, 1899 in Springfield, Illinois. The documentary focuses on the life and times of the oldest "out" African American lesbian known and offers a rare opportunity to experience a century of our American history as lived by one inspiring woman. By example, Ruth Ellis shows us what is possible and what can be realized, if one not only lives long and ages well but also lives with pride. Ruth Ellis passed away peacefully, at home in her sleep, on October 5, 2000 at 101. Living With Pride has won seven "Best Documentary" awards, and been screened in over 100 venues around the world.

Remembering Wei Yi fang, Remembering Myself... (1995).
Yvonne Welbon was granted P.O.V. finishing funds, a Sidney Poitier Emerging Filmmaker Fellowship and a Center for New Television / NEA-AFI Regional Fellowship for Remembering Wei Yi fang, Remembering Myself... (1995). The award winning documentary is an autobiographical film about her experiences as an African American woman living in Taiwan for six years. The film was broadcast on the national Public Television series P.O.V. in 1996. Remembering Wei Yi fang, Remembering Myself... won a Silver Hugo at Intercom: The Chicago International Film Festival, and was named Best Film/Video on Matters Relating to the Black Experience at the 11th Black International Cinema Festival in Berlin.

Missing Relations (1994)
An autobiographical experimental dramatic documentary which explores loss and denial in an African American family. Missing Relations was screened at the Mill Valley Film Festival, the Atlanta Black Arts Festival, and broadcast on the Chicago based PBS affiliate program Image Union. It was awarded a certificate of merit at the Chicago International Film Festival. Missing Relations was also distinguished as one of the most outstanding MFA thesis projects at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Welbon was honored with an MFA Traveling Fellowship for the film in 1994.

Sisters in the Life: First Love (1993)
A black lesbian love story which was screened at a myriad of festivals including the San Francisco, Chicago, New York and Hong Kong Gay and Lesbian Film Festivals. The film offers one of the only media portrayals of a young black lesbian coming to terms with her sexuality.

The Cinematic Jazz of Julie Dash (1992-93)
An inspiring interview with the pioneering filmmaker. Julie Dash speaks about her background, training, vision and struggle to bring Daughters of the Dust to the American movie screen. The Cinematic Jazz of Julie Dash has been acquired and added to the collections of numerous university libraries in the United States and abroad.

Monique (1991)
An experimental autobiographical film about her first painful encounter with racism. It was awarded the prize for Best Documentary at the 17th Festival of Illinois Film and Video Artists.

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