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Climate and environment update, art beyond Miami Art Week, UM’s Cosford Cinema

A painting by Vered Pasternak who paints portraits of people experiencing homelessness
Courtesy of Vered Pasternak
A painting by Vered Pasternak. She paints portraits of people experiencing homelessness.

On this Wednesday, Dec. 1, edition of Sundial:

Climate and environmental update

Shannon Estenoz is the Assistant Secretary for Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the U.S. Department of the Interior, under President Biden.

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She's worked in conservation in South Florida for more than two decades and served in the Interior Department during the Obama administration. And she's a fifth-generation Conch from Key West.

WLRN’s environmental reporter Jenny Staletovich sat down with Estenoz after she returned from the climate conference, COP26 in Glasgow to talk about federal projects, nature’s importance in the time of COVID and manatees.

Climate and environment update
Climate activists filled the streets of Glasgow, Scotland throughout the two-week COP26 summit, demanding world leaders keep the planet to the crucial 1.5 degree Celsius threshold.

Beyond Miami Art Week

It's Miami Art Week 2021 and you'll see a lot of glitz, glamour, digital art, and of course, parties going on this week.

One artist that isn’t on display at Basel this year, wants people to remember that living in plain sight are people who are experiencing the difficulties that come with not having a home.

Vered Pasternak is putting the spotlight on them through her paintings, some of which are painted on top of blueprints for the city of Miami.

"Miami is not only about money, luxury," said Pasternak. "There is another part that we often neglect ... there are people who are less fortunate and I would like to draw attention to those who really need our help, really need our support."

You can find her art on Instagram at @art_visiblevoicesmiami or on Facebook at @veredpasternakartwork.

Beyond Miami Art Week

UM’s Cosford Cinema

Rene Rodriguez spent a life watching movies then reviewing them for the Miami Herald.

That means he’s seen a lot of great films — also, a bunch of bad ones.

Before him, the newspaper’s movie critic was Bill Cosford, who mentored him and recruited him to be the backup movie critic.

“Cosford did not look down on genre movies. He didn't look down on the drive-in movies like other critics do. And then he would also pan a lot of movies that I really loved and it would infuriate me,” said Rodriguez. “He told me ... when you're a critic, you have to write from your heart and you have to not worry about what people are going to think about your review, whether they're going to disagree with you or not. You have to write honestly.”

Like many newspapers across the country, the Miami Herald dropped the movie critic position and Rodriguez went on to cover other stories, but his love of movies was ever-present.

Today, he is back working with film, this time as the manager of the Bill Cosford Cinema on the campus of the University of Miami.

“I came up with this idea for a monthly series called ‘Watching Movies With’ where you invite a member of the community to pick a movie and then come to the cinema to introduce it and then sit down afterward for a Q&A to talk about it with with the audience,” Rodriguez said.

That series is expected to launch in mid-January 2022 with Dave Barry hosting.

UM’s Cosford Cinema
Movie trailers can drive people to the theaters or keep them away altogether.

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Leslie Ovalle produces WLRN's daily magazine program, Sundial. She previously produced Morning Edition newscasts at WLRN and anchored the midday news. As a multimedia producer, she also works on visual and digital storytelling.
Caitie Muñoz, formerly Switalski, produces WLRN's midday public affairs program, Sundial weekdays at 1 and 8 p.m. Prior to transitioning to production, Caitie covered news and stories concerning quality of life in Broward County and its municipalities for WLRN News for four years.