Teaching Award

I’ve been teaching at Colorado State University for over 7 years and I’m so honored to be receiving this award.
The 14’er Award: This award recognized innovative achievements demonstrating unique vision, creativity and grit.

Colorado State University celebrates award winners at the Provost’s Awards Luncheon. April 14, 2022


My first film for this year is titled Soon.

I was thinking about Super 8mm film and my own childhood and all these home movies my father shot and then transferred to a variety of video tapes and systems, and how those moving images mutate and glitch into its own form. The transformation is part of it, the memory, the pain and the history manifesting visually.

I was also thinking about living through war and how trauma is not something you have to suffer through alone, other people who have gone through difficult times can connect to this.

I … Read the rest

Boy from War zine

These are selections from my art-journals from 1988 -1989 when I was 18 years old.
I was a romantic weird guy, trying to figure out my life by working out my stuff in drawings and words. 30 years later I decided to publish this embarrassing work as a peak into my headspace as a young man. I think of this as a type of time-machine that can fuse my past and present into something new.

This is a hardcover zine (11 X 8.5 inches) with 80 sides and 40 pages.
Purchase Boy from War

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New Trailer for Soak

I edited a new trailer for my 2002 first feature film Soak. My friend Tom had never performed in a film before but he wanted to help me. I always prefer to work with non-professionals actors, or people that have never acted before. It helps that my film crew is so tiny—in this film it was mostly me and the camera and the performer— that it allows for a certain tone to blossom. No deadline, no money, no worry. We were free.

It had only one public screening as a world premiere at the 2002 Chicago Underground Film Festival.… Read the rest

American Arab at Best of CUFF Virtual Fest

The Chicago Underground Film Festival has been playing my films since 1998! Holy shit. If it wasn’t for Bryan and CUFF I would not be who I am today. They asked me if I had any fun stories about CUFF… and I have so many. Some are epic and shall not be repeated and others I can barely remember, lol. But it was my friendships and connections with all the wonderful folks at CUFF, and the filmmakers that I feel a kinship with– it was an extension of everything that I loved about Chicago and this more fringe set of … Read the rest

Usama Talk – The Spring Pandemic

Audio stories and reflections on the COVID-19 pandemic from March 14th to April 26th, 2020.

Voices from Usama Alshaibi, Talia Watrous and Muneera Alshaibi. Additional media clips include Doctor Facui, Doctor Suraj Saggar and Donald Trump with reporters.