Natalia Almada screened her documentary El Velador (The Night Watchman) earlier this year as part of Watkins' Visiting Artists Series. Watkins’ Tom Williams introduced her, and if memory serves correctly he told the audience that Almada is, in his opinion, the finest contemporary artist of her time. Days later, I was at a dinner party where several of the attendees were still gushing about Almada's appearance, and El Velador in particular. So it’s not entirely surprising that Almada was one of several recipients of this year’s MacArthur "genius grants," but it’s still a really big deal. Read more about her story in this article from yesterday's New York Times.
Days before the news broke that Almada had won the grant, I got a press release announcing that the national broadcast premiere of her film El Velador (The Night Watchman) would be on Sept. 27 on PBS. Along with that airing, the film is available — for free and in its entirety — on PBS’s website. It's going to be up there through Dec. 20.
In my fantasy world, all Country Life readers would watch this on the Internet together, and each life would be changed, and we’d all hold hands virtually and think about how great it is when smart people get rewards.
Watch the full movie here: Natalia Almada's El Velador (The Night Watchman)