Holding Back The Tide

New York City was once the oyster capital of the world, now specter of this bivalve haunts the city. While volunteers restore them to the harbor, this hybrid documentary celebrates oysters as queer environmental icons.

Oysters were, and are, quintessential New York. Holding Back The Tide is a city symphony of urban and aquatic landscapes that follows the precarious ebb and flow of oysters across their lifecycles. Our story is guided by initiatives that close the ecological loop all over the city and beyond.

We celebrate this bivalve as an under-sung hero cleaning up the waterways and protecting the coastline. As we connect NYC’s vitality with the teeming life below its water, we ask: how can something the oyster build toward the future in the face of looming climate disaster? How much are we willing to invest in our cities’ longevity?

Role: Producer, Editor, Camera Operator
Directed by Emily Packer

Supported by The Sundance Institute, IDA's DocuClub, The Wave Farm, New York State Council on the Arts.