Seattle based filmmaker Hannah Guggenheim got her start in film at the Saul Zaentz Media Center in Berekey, CA a celebrated media facility that is home to a community of over 30 independent feature and documentary filmmakers with dozens of Academy awards and countless nominations.
With an MFA from San Francisco State University’s Cinema Studies Department, Guggenheim’s work as a filmmaker began with a keen interest in social justice. Hannah studied in Brazil with School for International Training. With a focus on beauty; not the abject, cameras were donated to children who documented their barrio community. With the funds from the exhibit, a library was opened.
Years later she created a similar photo collaboration/social engagement project, this time with gang members in San Francisco’s Mission District.
From still photography to feature filmmaking, her award winning collaborative film “ Benji and Judah” investigates disability, the healthcare system and its relationship to poverty in Oakland, California.
Most of Hannah’srecent film work has focused on social change through digital storytelling. This includes working on the “Choose Respect” anti-bullying media campaign, a non-violent communication digital tool kit that was distributed to schools across Alaska. Most recently Hannah has been working with Island Institute in Sitka, Alaska For where students returned to their rural villages to document their experiences with climate change.
While not on location, Hannah teaches film production. This includes working at Ex’Pression College for Digital Arts, San Francisco State University and University of California, Monterey, and the University of Alaska, Fairbanks.