Design Science Studio presents Periodical: Film Screening + Q&A with Director Lina Lyte Plioplyte
Design Science Studio welcomes Director Lina Lyte Plioplyte for a screening of her recent film Periodical — a powerful menstrual documentary about science, beauty, women’s rights, politics, and the mystery of periods. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with Lina Lyte Plioplyte and Amy Merrill of Plan C, and will feature local Bay Area organizations.
Periodical: Film Screening + Q&A with Director Lina Lyte Plioplyte
Wednesday, February 21, 2024
Running time: 1 hour and 35 mins
7PM: Film Screening
Sliding Scale Admission $5-20
Periodical, the groundbreaking documentary by Emmy Award-winning director Lina Lyte Plioplyte, delves into the deeply ingrained stigma surrounding the menstrual cycle. The film explores the paradox of a natural bodily function being rendered a societal taboo and includes insights from activists, medical professionals, and celebrities. It highlights various aspects related to menstruation, such as educational initiatives, specialized diets, sacred rituals, and the fight against the tampon tax—a sales tax imposed on menstrual products by nearly two dozen states.
Plioplyte views menstruation as a "beautiful cycle" experienced by half of the world's population, critiquing the societal norm that discourages open discussion about it. Periodical aims to catalyze a social and political movement now underway to dispel the centuries-old shame surrounding menstruation, advocating for a more informed and accepting approach to understanding menstrual cycles. Plioplyte emphasizes, "We have all the tools in the world to understand our cycles better, so we never, ever have to say 'She is chaotic' ever again."
Additionally, the event will feature Amy Merrill, co-founder of Plan C. Her organization's pivotal role in enhancing access to abortion pills in the US has made a significant impact, reaching millions.
Periodical tells the unexpected story of the human body by exploring the marvel and mystery of the menstrual cycle, from the first period to the last. But this is not your middle school sex-ed class. In the film, soccer star Megan Rapinoe reveals how the Women's U.S. Soccer team tracks their cycles, scientists share discoveries on the power and possibilities of stem cells found in period blood, young activists flip the bill on period taxes one state at a time, and celebrities like Gloria Steinem, Naomi Watts, and Anna Konkle share their personal experiences and advocate for their own rights. Lina Lyte Plioplyte’s innovative and passionate documentary uncovers shocking truths, challenges taboos, and celebrates the end of centuries of societal-enforced stigma.
6 – 7PM: Mix, mingle, and connect with local orgs for menstruating bodies
7 – 8:30PM: Film Screening
8:30 – 9PM: Q&A with Lina Lyte Plioplyte
9 – 10PM: Mix, mingle, and connect
Local Initiatives and Organizations
This event features local women’s rights organizations and initiatives including Plan C and Simply the Basics. We hope you can come, get connected, and get involved!
Gray Area and the Design Science Studio are thrilled to present an evening dedicated to screening Periodical. We're proud to highlight two prominent artists/activists, Lina Lyte Plioplyte and Amy Merrill, who are both graduates of the Design Science Studio's regenerative cultural incubator.
Creative Producer: Roxi Shohadaee
Production Assistant: Ariella Neckritz
Lina Lyte Plioplyte
Lina Lyte Plioplyte's cinematic journey began in Lithuania and the scholarly halls of the University of Colorado Boulder, where her passion for moving images first took flight. But it was the New York City that truly honed her craft, as she carved out her niche in 2008, creating visual narratives for NYLON magazine and a host of fashion brands. Over the past 12 years, Lina has directed and filmed an array of documentaries, commercials, travelogues, and short films. Her works have adorned screens from MTV to PBS, graced the prestigious Venice Biennale, and captivated audiences at renowned film festivals like SxSW and IDFA. Her directorial debut, "Advanced Style," now streams on Amazon, and her latest groundbreaking work, "Periodical," a feature documentary exploring the menstrual cycle produced by XTR, made its debut at SxSW and is now streaming on MSNBC and Peacock. An Emmy-recognized cinematographer, Lina's lens adores natural light and intimacy that transcends the screen. With an intuitive grasp of both the camera's eye and the story's heart, Lina is a skillful collaborator of the documentary form. Lina's commitment to filmmaking is holistic, championing inclusivity by advocating for women and minorities, imparting wisdom to the next generation of filmmakers, and nurturing an eco-conscious set environment. Running quarterly Filmmakers' Accelerators, she dedicates 8 weeks to guiding other filmmakers, equipping them to sculpt and present their stories against the backdrop of the ever-evolving documentary landscape.
Amy Merrill is an artist/activist at the intersection of creative communications, technology, and social change. In 2015, she co-founded Plan C to transform access to abortion pills by mail in the US, and under her co-leadership Plan C has grown to an annual audience of millions on an award-winning website, press reach in the billions, nationwide partnerships in research, creative and tech and “Plan C” as a household term for abortion pills. She was named in Fast Company’s 2023 Most Creative People in Business, serves as advisor for new gen-z emergency contraception brand Julie and new abortion chatbot Charley, and was an inaugural member of the Buckminster Fuller Institute’s Design Science Studio in 2020. Amy holds 20+ years navigating complex social issues, from human trafficking to economic injustice to gender equity: which led to reproductive health and access as a current focus. Her design studio Eyes Open leads creative communications for purpose-driven individuals and organizations. She is based in the Bay Area CA.
Simply the Basics is a globally-reaching Hygiene Bank dedicated to the mission of ensuring that individuals, families, and communities in need have access to high-quality hygiene care, fostering improved physical health and wellness. By striving to make hygiene more accessible and equitable, Simply the Basics is committed to improving public health and empowering people to reach greater goals.
Design Science Studio
The Design Science Studio is an educational cultural incubator and commUnity of practice for (r)Evolutionary creators inspiring regenerative, equitable, and just futures for all life. The studio promotes the power of art and design as a cross-cultural language for social and systemic change with the purpose of guiding and empowering visionary voices. It’s designed to help propel protopian visions of possible futures in pARTnership with thought leaders, organizations, and initiatives.