Vera Brunner-Sung is a filmmaker who uses experimental, documentary, and narrative techniques to explore the relationship between place and identity.
The child of immigrants from Korea and Switzerland, Vera grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Early on, her intercultural, mixed-race experience created a fluid sense of belonging that informs her work. After undergraduate work in public policy and visual art at Brown University, she moved to California to study film with Thom Andersen, Rebecca Baron, James Benning, and Betzy Bromberg at CalArts.
Vera’s films, videos, and photographs have been presented at festivals, museums, and galleries in the U.S. and abroad, including Sundance, the Torino Film Festival, CPH:DOX, Leeum Samsung Museum of Art, MoMA PS1, San Francisco International Film Festival, Ann Arbor Film Festival, and Images Festival. Her first feature, Bella Vista, had its world premiere at the International Film Festival Rotterdam in 2014, and went on to win her the George C. Lin Emerging Filmmaker Award at the 15th San Diego Asian Film Festival. She is a 2015 Fellow with the Center for Asian American Media and a 2020 Sundance FilmTwo Fellow.
In addition to making films, Vera is a writer and educator. Her essays, reviews, and reports have appeared in print and online publications including Sight & Sound, Cinema Scope, and Millennium Film Journal. Her chapter on the representation of site-specific art in contemporary documentary film appears in Documenting the Visual Arts (ed. Roger Hallas, Routledge, 2019). She has taught at the University of California, San Diego, and the University of Montana, and is currently an assistant professor at The Ohio State University.