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Caroline Leaf Collection

Canadian-American Filmmaker Caroline Leaf (1946-) began her filmmaking career at Harvard under the tutelage of Derek Lamb in the late 1960s. While in school Leaf completed her first film, Sand, or Peter and the Wolf (1968), an interpretation of the Peter and the Wolf fable, in which she established her innovative sand animation technique. Leaf would go on to an accomplished and award-winning filmmaking career that has included pioneering experimental animated works, live-action documentary and commercial productions, teaching and instruction, and significant work with the National Film Board of Canada (NFB). Leaf’s films explore powerful themes of interpersonal relationships, social perception and traditional folklore.

Donated to the Harvard Film Archive by Caroline Leaf in 2008, the collection consists of prints and production materials from 1968-1998. The breadth of this collection spans Leaf’s career from her student days at Harvard in 1968 to her subsequent animated shorts and commercial work, and her return to Harvard as an animation instructor from 1996-1998. The collection includes original works, collaborations with other filmmakers and contributions to various projects, films from Leaf’s personal collection, and works by other artists related to Leaf. Holdings for this collection consist of film prints and original elements, audio and video, as well as original scratch tests on 70mm and glass panels for Leaf’s short film Entre deux soeurs (Two sisters) (1991). Also included are papers, promotional materials, storyboards, photographs, hand-painted glass panes, and original drawings, which document Leaf’s filmmaking history, production methods and processes.

A finding Aid for the Caroline Leaf Collection may be accessed here.