Partners

Megan McHugh is a documentary filmmaker based in San Francisco. She produces and directs films with Joseph De Mario for Art Curved Straight. McHugh grew up in Denver, Colorado and spent four years in New Mexico completing a Bachelor of Arts in Documentary Studies.

Megan McHugh © 2014 Joseph De Mario

Her education at the College of Santa Fe gave her access to hands-on opportunities working on film projects in Santa Fe and rural New Mexico. McHugh produced short documentaries in New Mexico: The Flamenco Dancer, That's Where I Was, Gangs at Cuba High, A Feminine Experience. In these works she emphasizes the importance of diversity and self-expression while unraveling people's stories.

With each project, McHugh intuitively uses digital technologies in inventive ways, sometimes incorporating traditional art media. Her films are formally beautiful yet they exist within a documentary framework.

McHugh’s first feature, WORDS, documents a journey to northern India made by sixteen teenagers in the summer of 2008. In 2014, the film was an Official Selection at the Albuquerque Film & Media Experience in New Mexico. During 2008 and 2009, McHugh also worked with filmmaker Ed Radtke on a series of projects in New Mexico and Costa Rica.

In 2010, McHugh spent a year in Los Angeles working in the Hollywood film industry. She interned with documentary filmmaker Ondi Timoner, was Location Manager for the feature Sound of My Voice and Director of Photography on several promotional videos for Evian Water entitled Live Young L.A. These films, completed during her college years and beyond, and coupled with her work in Hollywood and foreign projects, gave McHugh valuable experience in production and digital media. Most importantly - the breadth of this experience helped her to find her voice.

McHugh has focused on Producing and Directing for Art Curved Straight since moving to San Francisco in 2011. RESTROOM premiered in 2013 at the Castro Theater in San Francisco. Her “short without dialogue” was an Official Selection at the 36th Starz Denver International Film Festival and at the NewFilmmakers/ WinterFest in New York City.

Demolition:Troll, an Official Selection at the 37th Mill Valley Film Festival in 2014, is a tale about a troll that protected the San Francisco Bay Bridge for 24 years. The documentary has also been presented at the Oakland Museum of California, the Paramount Theater and San Francisco’s Roxie Theater as an Official Selection at SF DocFest.

In March 2014, Firebreak, premiered at the Castro Theater in San Francisco. Co-directed by McHugh and Joseph De Mario, it is their response to a 2011 memorial for fallen San Francisco firefighters when hundreds of fire trucks rode down Gough Street.

Since 2015, McHugh has been directing and editing videos which document exhibitions, interviews and artist presentations at SF Camerawork related to contemporary photography and video for a new SFC Video Archive, produced by Art Curved Straight. Some examples are: Strange Developments - Women in Video Art, Strange Developments - Alternative Process Photography in the Bay Area, Meghann Riepenhoff in conversation with Emily Lambert and a presentation about the work of photographers Saul Bromberger and Sandra Hoover - Portrait of Caring: Living with AIDS at the Bailey-Boushay House. In addition, Megan McHugh and Joseph De Mario are working on their latest documentary Revolving Doors: Chris Fraser @ SF Camerawork and expect completion in late 2016.

Autoportrait / Sunglasses © 2013 Joseph De Mario

Joseph De Mario lives and works in San Francisco. The visual artist and curator makes documentaries with Megan McHugh for Art Curved Straight. Their film Demolition:Troll was an Official Selection at the 37th Mill Valley Film Festival. It has also been presented at the Oakland Museum of California, the Paramount Theater and San Francisco’s Roxie Theater as an Official Selection at SFDocFest. Currently, he is working with McHugh on a project due to be completed in 2016 entitled Revolving Doors: Chris Fraser @ SF Camerawork.

Ryokan / July 4 from the series Are You There? © 2009 Joseph De Mario

De Mario also makes photographs, videos and installations.Two photographic series are War and Sports and Christmas Surrender. The current series is entitled Are You There?.

Many of De Mario's videos are performative and address the sculptural qualities of architecture and landscapes. A good example is hill where he videotaped himself running over a snow-covered hill one bright afternoon in Chicago's Lincoln Park. Other related works include avenue, landing and VideoDavid. Firebreak, a film he co-directed with McHugh, continues a preoccupation with repetition, abstraction and site-generated metaphors.

De Mario founded Bakery Art Exhibitions at the Jazz Bakery in Los Angeles, a non-profit visual art exhibition program for emerging and mid-career artists. He was the Visual Art Curator there from 1999 to 2009 where he showed hundreds of artists from every region of the United States and many foreign countries.

High Wire from the series Christmas Surrender © 1994 Joseph De Mario

In addition to his work with Megan McHugh, De Mario has worked for and collaborated with many distinguished artists. He assisted sculptor Nancy Rubins in Los Angeles and San Francisco, created performance works with Martin Kersels in Los Angeles and built a site-specific installation in Chicago with Inigo Manglano-Ovalle. In 2010, he edited an unpublished book entitled Ave Pildas Black and Whites '62-'64: Cincinnati and Pittsburgh Jazz with photographs by Ave Pildas and a text by arts journalist Kirk Silsbee.

Self-portrait / Two Sides © 2010 Joseph De Mario

De Mario began to study photography with William Garnett while he was an undergraduate at Berkeley and continued at UCLA with Robert Heinecken. At the School of the Art Institute of Chicago he was awarded full Trustee scholarships for graduate study in photography, sculpture and performance, earning a Master of Fine Arts in Visual Art at the School in 1990.

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