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Leighton Pierce born John Leighton Pierce (27 October 1954, Rochester, NY) is an American experimental filmmaker who works with film, video, sound, and installation. He is also the Dean of the School of Film/Video at CalArts since the summer of 2014. He is best known for his impressionistic technique in video imagery that creates a hypnotic effect as well as his use of sound design. The motif of water is dominant in his work and gave the name to the video series "Memories of Water". Pierce looks for inspiration in his immediate surroundings. He has stated that "in the simplest terms, a film or a video can be considered to be a meaningful experience in time. As a filmmaker, I take that as my mission: through the use of image and sound, I am composing an experience for the audience"  He has won over 60 awards  from film and experimental festivals, grants such as the Rockefeller, Guggenheim, Creative Capital Award, and the National Endowment for the Arts, and has screened his films at the Museum of Modern Art, NY, the Sundance Film Festival, Rotterdam Film Festival, Cinémathèque française, and the Whitney Biennal.