Art is the Tree of Life
Directed by Geoffrey Quinn, Christine Weicher
At 95 years old, Wilma Daubenspeck Cliff is an undiscovered American artist with a life well lived. But, her life also saw tragedy, and that fact reinvigorated — and distinguished — her art. “Art Is The Tree of Life” shares her journey. Her neighbor and friend Geoffrey Quinn, MD, an amateur photographer, and his wife Christine Weicher, a TV journalist, document the preparations for her first official gallery opening. Her life story unexpectedly unfolds in her own words. For most of her years, she created personal art — portraits of her three daughters, for example. But, it was the untimely, accidental death of one of her children that would change her and transform her art. ‘Death changes everything,’ the 95 year old artist says. She sought meaning in the death of her teenage daughter. Her journey would lead her to a Carmelite monetary, through Buddhist training and then to a non-religious meditation center. ‘The person I am today is a result of that suffering,’ she says. Woven into her new-found art was the wisdom of her spiritual journey and her extensive travels years before. She and her art remained a hidden treasure for nearly 30 years, until 2010 when two professors a local college arranged for an exhibit of her work. It was a seminal moment and one that was captured through this short film.
Filmmakers Geoffrey Quinn, Christine Weicher and nonagenarian Wilma Daubenspeck Cliff (Saturday ONLY) are attending the screening with some of her art in hand.
Geoffrey Quinn is a practicing MD. Prior to his medical studies he worked as a journalist for the Associated Press, Time Magazine, and San Diego Magazine. With “Art is the Tree of Life,” he is thrilled to join his wife, Christie Weicher in their first filmmaking collaboration. Christine Weicher is a three time Emmy Award winner and has been recognized by UCLA’s Anderson School of Management, the National Association of Black Journalists and others. She has produced for 60 Minutes, The CBS Evening News, HDNet’s “Dan Rather Reports,” KQED Television, Discovery Channel, Lifetime Cable Television, and the Wall Street Journal cable broadcast.
Cinematographer: Christine Weicher, Geoffrey Quinn
Editor: Emanuele Secci
Featuring: Wilma Daubenspeck Cliff