Motionpoems: Our films are pure poetry.

After animator/producer Angella Kassube first animated one of Todd Boss's poems in 2008, the duo started introducing other poets to other video artists -- and a new hybrid form was born! Motionpoems is a 501c3 nonprofit arts organization based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. We partner with top-quality for-profit and non-profit publishers, film companies, and literary organizations. We create opportunities for artists to meet and work together.

Motionpoems explores the space between poets and other artists to create hybrid artworks that connect with contemporary audiences in new ways.


We do not currently have any open calls for submission.

Motionpoems partners with publishers and literary organizations to procure poems for each season. Poets retain the rights to their poems and sign a standard film contract with Motionpoems. Poems are selected from partnering publishers’ forthcoming titles and then offered to our network of filmmakers. We post occasional calls for submissions that are publicized in our newsletter and social media sites.

Alaska Quarterly Review, American Poetry Review, The Believer and McSweeney’s, Cave Canem, Copper Canyon Press, Farrar Straus & Giroux, Graywolf Press, Milkweed Editions, The Poetry Foundation, Scribner’s annual Best American Poetry anthology, Tin House, VIDA: Women in Literary Arts, Wave Books, Write Our Democracy


Some video artists approach us. Others are approached by our season’s producer, which ensures a broad range of perspectives and aesthetics. All our film artists are offered a contract that protects their rights to their work. We offer them production oversight, collaborator facilitation, and audio supervision as needed. Film artists work from completed poems and are given free rein. A small stipend rewards video artists who complete projects on deadline and whose work is selected for screening.

We’d like to express our gratitude for our current and past producers: Claire McGirr (current season 8), Cori Cooperider (in-progress season 9), Jennifer David (season 5), Amanda Miller (season 6), Lisa Effres (YoPo), e.g. bailey (Spoken Word), and Carolyn Casey (season 7).


Want to use motionpoems in the classroom? 

We want to help! Click here for lesson plans, prompts, and activities.

Have a Motionpoems-related lesson plan you want to share with the world? Contact Saara at

Want to see some of the motionpoems students have come up with? Yeah, you do! Check them out here, and download our “How to Make Motionpoems” curriculum here. 


A dozen poems are selected annually for public screening at our annual festival and premiere. Our premieres are co-hosted by The Walker Art Center and the Minneapolis-St Paul International Film Festival. Soon, we’ll add regional premieres, including Miami and Los Angeles, to our calendar. We release new motionpoems online each month. Talks are underway with regional and national broadcasters about distribution, and we welcome more such conversations.


Angella and Todd tell the Motionpoems story. from Motionpoems on Vimeo.


Todd Boss, co-founder, Executive and Artistic Director, poet and public artist
Egg Creative, a leading provider of original and licensed music for film, television, and advertising in Minneapolis.
Claire McGirr, senior producer with many years of experience, currently at Smuggler in NYC.
Saara Myrene Raappana, communications director, poet and editor
Su Hwang, communications associate, poet and activist
Julie Stroud, grant writer
Independent Filmmaker Project (IFP)-MN, a leading resource for indie filmmakers in Minnesota.
Pixel Farm (Mpls), design, shoot, and VFX
Ramble Pictures (Mpls), film, edit, post and mastering

Jennifer Dodgson (secretary), Education Director, Loft Literary Center
Andrew Gamson, vice president, Established Brands, Inc.
Matt Piermantier (treasurer), Account Manager, Augeo Affinity Marketing
Andrew Reynolds, Executive Producer, Motion504
Daniel Slager (chair), Executive Publisher, Milkweed Editions
Jason Welsh, VP Sales, Lionsgate Films
Anne White, independent brand marketing consultant

Non-Voting Emeritus Board Members:
Angella Kassube, Freelance Motion Designer, co-founder of Motionpoems

Our look–logos and branding, the shine on our shoes, the pep in our step–is designed by Knock, Inc. of Minneapolis.