The Art of Poetry Film with Cheryl Gross: “Millionaire”

Poem by Mab Jones
Animation by Lauren Orme and Jordan Brookes
Dedicated to (about) the poet Johnny Giles

A love poem in every sense of the word, Millionaire is uncomplicated and embraces the value of being in love. This video poem is wonderful and exquisitely charming. Unpretentious and lovely, it gets the point across without being sappy or corny.

I love the simple frame-by-frame line animation. The motion aspect is wonderful, but when I close my eyes and just listen to the audio, the poem still works. Every aspect of this video poem can stand alone, but all together, it is a very special treat.

There is nothing complicated about this piece and that’s why it works. No kitchen sink, just plain and uncomplicated. Millionaire follows the theory and quote by Mies van der Rohe: less is more. So many times, we as artists fall in love with our work and want to incorporate every detail. This is not always necessary in order to get one’s point across.

Millionaire is a true love poem. It is stunning in its plainness and doesn’t waver. There is not much else to say, just a beautiful piece.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Cheryl Gross (website, blog) is an illustrator, painter, writer, and motion graphic artist living and working in the New York/Jersey City area. She is a professor at Pratt Institute (where she received her MFA) and Bloomfield College.

Her work has appeared in numerous festivals and publications as well as gracing the walls of many galleries, corporate and museum collections.

“I equate my work with creating and building an environment, transforming my inner thoughts into reality. Beginning with the physical process, I work in layers. I am involved in solving visual and verbal complexities such as design and narrative. My urban influence has indeed added an ‘edge’ to my work.”

Cheryl has often been compared to “Dr. Seuss on crack.”