“High Art” was presented in the “Dear MKE” shorts program at the Milwaukee Film Festival on October 9, 2014. I will be reviewing each short – most under five minutes in length – and gauging whether they are worthy of expansion into a longer-form short or feature.

Most of the shorts in the Dear MKE program were produced by Milwaukee commercial directors, and most of that shines through rather brightly. Most felt like thinly-veiled advertisements rather than succinct documentaries about the Milwaukee experience. Not in the case of High Art, which was one of the best shorts featured in the program. Director Chris James Thompson, fresh off the successful Jeffrey Dahmer Files (or Jeff, as it is known now), returns to the Milwaukee Film Festival with a truthful and tender profile of how art is elevating the experiences of the youth in the city. I am genuinely looking forward to more work from Thompson, who looks like one of the most promising filmmakers to come out of Wisconsin in a long time.