Directed by Sergio Rapu.
Filmmaker Sergio Rapu follows Anishinaabe artist Jonathan Thunder as he dives deep into the inspirations behind his surrealist paintings and animations. From the killing of an iconic American hero to critical perspectives of how indigenous people were portrayed in early children’s cartoons, Thunder’s art prompts viewers to take a critical look at our shared mythologies.
Jonathan Thunder infuses his personal lens with real-time world experiences using a wide range of mediums. He is known for his surreal paintings, digitally animated films, and installations, in which he addresses subject matter of personal experience and social commentary. Jonathan is an enrolled member of the Red Lake Band of Ojibwe, and makes his home and studio in Duluth, MN.
He has attended the Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) in Santa Fe, NM and studied Visual Effects and Motion Graphics in Minneapolis, MN at the Art Institute International. His work has been featured in many states, regional, and national exhibitions, as well as in local and international publications. Thunder is the recipient of a 2020-21 Pollock–Krasner Foundation Award for his risk taking in painting. Since his first solo exhibit in 2004, he has won several awards for his short films in national and international competitions. His painting and digital work is in the permanent collections of multiple Museums and Universities.
Original production funding for In the Making is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and the National Endowment for the Arts.
American Masters series production funding is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, The Rosalind P. Walter Foundation, AARP, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, Judith and Burton Resnick, Koo and Patricia Yuen, Seton J. Melvin, Lillian Goldman Programming Endowment, The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation, Thea Petschek Iervolino Foundation, The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation, Vital Projects Fund, The Marc Haas Foundation, Ellen and James S. Marcus, The Ambrose Monell Foundation, The André and Elizabeth Kertész Foundation and public television viewers.
For the digital series, Michael Kantor is the Executive Producer for American Masters. Stanley Nelson, Marcia Smith and Monika Navarro are the Executive Producers for Firelight Media. Major support for the In the Making digital series is provided by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Additional funding provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, The Rosalind P. Walter Foundation, Anderson Family Charitable Fund, The Marc Haas Foundation, The Philip and Janice Levin Foundation and Edgar Wachenheim III.