My Wild Heart

Directed By: Lily Vakili, Erin Harper | Runtime: 56 min | Plays In Short Block: None

Nader Vakili, searching for disease resistant bananas in the early 1960’s, discovered old trees being cut down in the tropical territories where he was stationed for field research. He began to collect the wood.His mind’s eye told his hands what to do. His fingers took over, feeling the form that the tree offered. With no formal training, Nader started carving. Inspired by the beauty of nature, Persian poetry, literature and song, the sculptures took on lyrical curves and abstract forms. Sometimes he reacted to beauty and sometimes to the injustices and contradictions he encountered throughout his travels in the Americas and South East Asia. But it was the love of his life — his wife — who provided him with the deepest desire to create sculptural sensuality through the intersection of nature and art.The woodpile grew and so did his family of six children. Statues filled their home and the family befriended the structures by playing on them, dressing them up and ultimately appreciating their inherent aesthetic beauty. His wife, Mary Jane, arranged for the entire family and the woodpile to accompany him to the next field research destination: Honduras, Thailand, Puerto Rico, Iowa and northern Florida.After the children grew up, Mary Jane’s health declined as she suffered from the onset of Alzheimer’s. Nader eventually stopped carving to care for her. Now, they are separated for the first time in 58 years. Nader describes driving three hundred miles, round-trip, three times a week to visit his wife in an assisted living center. He comes home again; back to nature, back to his towering woodpile of nearly six tons, surrounded by a warehouse of masterpieces — some, twenty years in the making. Nader picks up his chisel to start again, searching for his muse in the wood.


October 18, 20195:00 PMTheater 12
October 22, 20196:45 PM Theater 12

* If filmmakers are present, there will be a 15 minute Q&A after the end credit sequence.


Film Type: Feature
Main Genre: Documentary
Sub Genre: Inspirational
Country of Origin: USA
Language: English
Subtitles: None
Premiere Status: World