Student Fellows

Mary Brimmer ’19 is a rising junior majoring in Sociology with a minor in Media & Film Studies. Prior to studying abroad in Florence, Italy for the Fall of 2017, Mary hopes to combine her passion for photography and interest in audio to reflect upon her life thus far. With a love for storytelling, she aspires to someday venture into ethnography and documentary film.

ProjectDocumenting the undiagnosed illness that has plagued her family since 2005, Mary’s project, Beyond the Surface, exposes the various stigmas surrounding chronic, “invisible” illnesses. Her family has been on a painstaking journey to find her father answers but have been met with many obstacles, including mistreatment or lack of recognition by health care professionals, strangers and even loved ones. Creating embroidered photographs in conjunction with audio of each of her family members, Beyond the Surface allows the audience an intimate look into her family’s experience. It seeks to reveal the very visible and harsh realities of chronic illness that extend beyond the body and into everyday life. Mary hopes that the project may spread awareness, spark conversation and foster support.


Simon Klein is a multimodal conceptual media artist who works primarily with photography, video, and audio documents. Simon is a 2017 graduate of Skidmore and self-determined major in Contemporary Media and Culture. His work has been featured in juried exhibitions around the Saratoga area, and has been shown in PhilaMOCA. Outside of his art, he has a passion for music and has worked with multiple radio stations including WXPN, Clocktower Radio, and WSPN, the Skidmore station he managed for the past year. He is extremely excited for the opportunity to further his experimental work in 360 video as part of the institute this summer. You can find him anywhere on the internet under the pseudonym PsymonSpine.

Project: Simon will make a 360 video collage collapsing past and present. Using footage from his time here at Skidmore as well as new footage shot in 360 of a walk around Saratoga, he wishes to collapse memory and space to create an individualized narrative of place that exists outside of normal perceptions. In this immersive space, the meanings of place may change to become fuller and more vibrant. Simon will use personal experiences of place and memory to create a landscape in which a history, or the pathways of memory, become apparent.  He will recast the Situationist idea of the Derive, a purposeful walk, to create an experience that helps bridge the gap of personal place and makes it more recognizable,  A Derive is a way to break down place into components and to study it to create an internal map or experience that is unique and apart from spectacle or quickly focused attention.

Kira Hastings ’17 impulsively began working with audio as a unique and intimate method of storytelling. After living in Paris for a year, she views her education as a study in storytelling techniques, encompassing written, visual, and oral forms. Drawing her inspiration from the many histories that exist behind the scenes but affect society every day, her project combines art history and audio to tell infrequently-heard but vital tales of women in art and the connections between historical works and feminist conversations today.

Exploring accessible, fun, and informative methods of teaching art history, this series will use the intimacy of sound to discuss what art historians find so exciting about their work. The pieces will provide the necessary background information but also search for an informal, less-academic sound than stereotypical art history lectures. Uniting the series through a women-oriented lens, the series will concentrate on relatively unknown women artists and women’s issues expressed in their works. What makes these works exciting and groundbreaking today? Why doesn’t everyone know about them? Utilizing art to discuss history and its consequences, the audio will capture what the artists hoped to express and why it was important. This historic lens will allow historians to explain how each work connects to social issues and discussions, both then and now.


Sindiso Mafico is a Zimbabwean, in her sophomore year of college. Her interest in Media Studies began with a community service assignment in High School at United World College which involved helping a fellow UWC student, Andres Broennimann, film the first ever UWC documentary, ‘The UWC Spirit’. As a Media Studies minor, she workw Skidmore’ in Media services.   She is most proud of the media project made during a 2016 summer program at the Media Institute of Social Change in Portland, Oregon. She produced a podcast and a documentary short film on police brutality centered around the first African-American femelale police officer in Portland. Her hope is to one-day work for a Participant Media- a production company devoted to producing entertainment with socially relevant themes.


Chelsea Nuesi ’17 will be a graduate of Skidmore College with a BA in Communication Design for Social Innovation, a self-determined major that encompasses her passions for creative writing, graphic design, and social justice. After discovering her love for design, Chelsea has been working on interdisciplinary projects including code, data, design, and writing. Her projects aim to address current issues, such as education inequality and linguistic prejudice. As Chelsea enters the world of design and technology, she plans to challenge the current boundaries of the publishing industry and bring books to life through interactive websites.

The Language Map is an interactive website that tells the story of Elvira Ramirez. In an audio recording, Elvira shares her experience with linguistic prejudice in Puerto Rico and in the United States. Visitors of the website can scroll through the transcript of the interview as Elvira voices her story. In addition to the text, visitors can observe and interpret drawings provided to depict Elvira’s external and internal reality with linguistic prejudice. The main goal of the website is to make Elvira’s story known and to inspire action against linguistic discrimination.