Living in the Story documents thirty-five years of art-making by photographer Patrick Nagatani. The film portrays an artist deeply concerned with world events, who uses imagery and storytelling to raise awareness about modern anxieties, with an emphasis on the threat of nuclear weapons. Despite the serious content of his subject matter, his innovative images are compelling and entertaining. An engaging raconteur and teacher, Nagatani talks in the film about his projects, his unorthodox photographic techniques, and his subtle weaving together of fiction and fact.

A short version exploring three photographic series dealing with immigration/internment and nuclear issues is available. These issues are particularly relevant today, in light of escalating threats of war, toxic pollution and a growing refugee population worldwide.

Scott Nagatani’s hauntingly beautiful music score provides the film’s soundtrack.



Best Feature Documentary, Dalmatia Film Festival
Best Medium Length Film, FIC AUTOR Film Festival
Honorable Mention Documentary Award, Asians on Film Festival
Certificate of Excellence, Dumbo Film Festival, Brooklyn, NY
July 18, 2019 – Windy City International Film Festival, Victory Gardens Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave., Chicago, IL, 1PM
July 25, 2019 – Los Angeles Center of Photography, 1515 Wilcox Ave., Hollywood, CA, 7 PM
July 27, 2019 – Japan Cuts Film Festival, 333 East 47th Street, New York, NY, 9:45 PM
Aug 31, 2019 – Cincinnati African & Asian Diaspora Film Festival, 2569 St Leo Pl, Cincinnati, OH, 2:30 PM
Summer 2019 (Date/Time TBA) – Streetside Cinema, Winston-Salem, NC
September 2019 – PBS Broadcast. Details TBA
Austin Asian American Film Festival, Austin, TX
Silver Screen International Film Festival, Tampa, FL
Asians on Film Festival, Los Angeles, CA
Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival, Philadelphia, PA
DC Asian Pacific American Film Festival, Washington, DC
Roma Independent Prisma Awards, Rome, Italy
Philadelphia Independent Film Festival, Philadelphia, PA
FIC AUTOR (Author's International Film Festival), Guadalajara, Mexico
Film Festival of Columbus, Columbus, OH
Benicia Film Festival, Benicia, CA
Cinalfama Lisbon International Film Awards, Lisbon, Portugal
Dalmatia Film Festival, Split, Croatia
Dumbo Film Festival, Brooklyn, NY
Alexandre Trauner Art/Film Festival Panorama Section, Szolnok, Hungary
Center for Creative Photography, Tucson, AZ
Pittsburgh Filmmakers, Pittsburgh, PA
Vermont Center for Photography/In-Sight Photography Project/Marlboro College, Brattleboro, VT
NewFilmmakers @ Anthology Film Archives, New York, NY
Griffin Museum of Photography/Laconia Gallery, Boston, MA
New Mexico Museum of Art, Santa Fe, NM
University of New Mexico Art Museum, Albuquerque, NM
Society for Photographic Education (SPE) National Conference, Philadelphia, PA
The Neon Theater, Dayton, OH
Max Kade Theatre, Armstrong Hall, Colorado College, Colorado Springs, CO
Duke University, Durham, NC
MICA/Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore, MD
Appalachian State University, Boone, NC
University of the Arts, Philadelphia, PA
Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ
Anderson Center for the Arts, Hartwick College, Oneonta, NY
Antioch Community Cinema, in conjunction with Nuclear Fallout: The Bomb in Three Archives exhibition
Edgewood College, Madison, WI
Otterbein University, Westerville, OH
Wright State University, Fairborn, OH
Ohio Wesleyan University, Delaware, OH
Lycoming College, Williamsport, PA


“I love it – I love that Patrick tells the tale entirely himself; that he steps beyond the front world of the filming to take me into his looping mind. The fun and of the journey comes across beautifully, yet also the political pointedness, punctuated by curt phrases like about becoming Catholic to fit in ‘but that didn't work.’"
– John Rohrbach, Senior Curator of Photographs at the Amon Carter Museum, Fort Worth, TX

“It's wonderful to hear Patrick's ideas expressed in his own voice alongside the work. The film is terrific!”
– Mary Statzer, Curator of Prints & Photographs, University of New Mexico Art Museum

“It’s a wonderful and breathless exploration of Nagatani’s diverse body of work and the themes and ideas he opens up. I really enjoyed it.”
– Joel Neville Anderson, NY Japan Society and JAPAN CUTS Programmer


To schedule a screening contact Lynn Estomin at