Hamptons Doc Fest and SAC Present ‘Imber’s Left Hand’

Painter Jon Imber in his studio with portraits he painted in his final months. “Imber’s Left Hand” will be screened by Hamptons Doc Fest indoors at the Southampton Arts Center on Sunday, October 24, at 4 p.m. Photo courtesy of Jeff Dworsky.

Complementing the Southampton Arts Center’s (SAC) current October exhibition titled “Clearing the Air,” which focuses on the theme of the transformative power of art as a means for therapy, escape, distraction, elevation and reflection, Hamptons Doc Fest will screen “Imber’s Left Hand” live at SAC on Sunday, October 24, at 4 p.m.

The documentary (76 min.), by Oceanside-raised director Richard Kane, tells the inspiring story of right-handed painter Jon Imber, born in Oceanside, who settled in New England and taught figure drawing at Harvard University for 27 years, before being diagnosed in 2012 with ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis), also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. Due to his illness, he was forced to adapt, painting with his left hand and then both hands held at his waist, as his degenerative condition progressed until his death at age 63 in 2014. During his last months, he drew over 100 portraits of family and friends.

Jon Imber’s Self Portrait.

After the film, there will be a live Q&A with Ron Hoffman, founder/executive director of Compassionate Care ALS, and Andrew Botsford, arts writer, actor, director, and president of the Hampton Theatre Company in Quogue.

“The extraordinary power of art to heal and transform is the focus of this documentary,” said Hamptons Doc Fest founder and executive director Jacqui Lofaro. “It helps us understand that beauty and creation are as important as medicine.”

Tickets for “Imber’s Left Hand” are $15 ($10 SAC members) and available through the Hamptons Doc Fest website, hamptonsdocfest.com, or the SAC website, southamptonartscenter.org. Southampton Arts Center is at 25 Jobs Lane, Southampton. Attendees must wear a mask and show proof of COVID vaccination.