An interview with Damon Lee Patterson
By Kat Dison
Kansas City filmmaker Damon Lee Patterson celebrates the therapeutic power of art in his feature documentary, Art Saved My Life. The film aims to prove art has the capacity to transform, heal, progress, enrich, and even save lives. Art Saved My Life premieres at The Kansas City Fringe Festival on July 19th and will continue to be shown at The Screenland Theater throughout the month before it hits the road.
[Kat Dison] What drove you to make a documentary on the transformative qualities of art?
[Damon Lee Patterson] Honestly, the state of the world drove me to do this; the human condition. I believe we are at a crucial point at this time in history. It’s as if the whole world is asking to revisit the drawing board--not saying start from scratch, but pretty darn close. There’s so much unrest and dissatisfaction with the way things are going and this is everywhere. People are waking up and they are demanding change, so I feel that the more people who know and understand their creative abilities the better off we all are. The more people that know they have power within them the better.
That, and just witnessing the creative power in my own life and others. (DLP)
Your work features diverse populations of creative individuals. Has this experience altered your original understanding of art and life?
What it’s done is reaffirm my original understanding. The experience has given me more hope and confidence to pursue the visions in my heart. Knowing that there’s other people who see and feel the same as I do is very inspiring.
Artist’s roles are evolving and becoming more expansive in today’s world. What do you hope that artist will bring to our future?
I hope that artists take on helping the human race remember our connection to nature. (DLP)
I believe that creativity can be defined as the act of channeling energy into something that another person can experience. So, even the act of raising a child is an art-form. Everyone is an artist in some way, shape, and form. (DLP)