Tragedy has a way of changing the way we see things. By the light of darkness, experiences—even seemingly mundane ones—can be given a certain power. This is certainly true of Flower of Flowers, a new 30-minute documentary from Stumptown and Farm League that follows four people around Antigua, Guatemala, the city some 10 miles from Sunday’s Volcán de Fuego eruption. With the death toll continuing to rise—up to 75 as of this morning—and Anacafé stating the eruption causing a total loss of .9% of the national coffee crop, Flower of Flowers shifts from the documentation of a journey to a reminder vibrant country and the people on the front lines of the devastation.
Filmed earlier this year in February, the mini-documentary follows pro skateboarders Rick McCrank and Ray Barbee, artist Lori Damiano, and Stumptown Quality Assurance Manager Jim Kelso as they “engage with local coffee producers and learn about what’s happening in Central America through the lens of music, art and skateboarding.” But even in the 55-second trailer, the spectre of tragedy a few months in the future looms large; Volcán de Fuego hangs in the background of multiple shots, still in its more placid state.
Having watched the preview before the weekend’s events and then again after it, it is interesting how the focus moves away from the film’s four subjects and into the background, the people and places that surround them. But it is also a reminder of the beauty that once was not so long ago and can be again with our help. That’s why Stumptown is donating all proceeds from today’s (June 6th) cafe sales will be contributed to relief efforts in collaboration with the Guatemala Bella Vista Mill.
Flower of Flowers will premier on June 24th at the Brooklyn Bazaar in New York, with screenings in Los Angeles and Portland taking place on June 27th and July 9th, respectively. For more information on the film, visit Stumptown’s official website. To donate directly to relief efforts, PBS has put together a list of places to do so here.
Zac Cadwalader is the news editor at Sprudge Media Network and a staff writer based in Dallas. Read more Zac Cadwalader on Sprudge.
*all media via Stumptown
Disclosure: Stumptown Coffee Roasters is an advertising partner on Sprudge Media Network.