Lecture Series Speakers Announced for Collector’s Weekend

We’re pleased to announce the 2020 line-up for Collector’s Weekend Lecture Series. Free to the public (advanced registration requested for seating), the Lecture Series is part of the Collector’s Weekend event at Vaillancourt Folk Art’s Christmas Museum in Sutton, MA.

Making The Scene: Christmas Props for Movies

Lecture 1: 10am – 11am

Molly Martin

Prop Master, Producer of Film

Molly Martin reins from a background in theatre as a Director, Production Manager and Equity Stage Manager for many years before jumping into her now career as a Property Master and Producer on several films.  After receiving her BFA from University of Montana and her MA at Emerson College in Theatre Education, she had an opportunity to teach acting and improv to kids and adults while fulfilling her role as the Production Manager at Theatre Workshop of Nantucket. On the island she founded the Improv Troupe, and directed Aesop’s Fables, Cinderella 2001, The Wit and Wisdom of Will’s Women and Faith Healer.  Nantucket island is where Molly was the Associate Producer of the film Grey Lady.  Which she then went onto work on Annabelle Hooper and the Ghosts of Nantucket, Altar Rock and most recently on the island, Martin Eden.  Molly currently resides in Brookline, MA and has worked in the Props Department for movies such as, Honest Thief, I Care A Lot, Love Weddings & Other Disasters, House Sitter, I Am Not Your Daughter, and Christmas a la Mode. Ms. Martin is currently gearing up to film another Christmas Movie in the Worcester area as we speak. She wants to let people know she is originally from Chicago and loves the White Sox…but don’t hold that against her!

“It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas” – Developing Holiday Photo Strategy in Retail –

Lecture 2: 11am – 12pm

James O’Leary

Senior Art Director – Photography Kohl’s Marketing

James O’Leary was born and raised locally in Millbury, Massachusetts where from an early age he developed a passion for photography.  After receiving a degree in photography, Jim became involved with Kohl’s fashion marketing in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  At Kohl’s Jim is a principal member of a team responsible for the development and execution of photographic content for fashion and home marketing. Over the years Jim has worked with many leading photographers and fashion designers in the industry, and heads the creative direction on several premier Kohl’s brands such as Vera Wang, Mark Anthony, Daisy Fuentes and Elizabeth & James by Ashley and Mary-Kate Olsen. When not at home in Milwaukee with his husband Romel and Boston Terrier Jake, Jim can be found on location and in photo studios in New York, Miami and Los Angeles.

Creating A Christmas Movie

Lecture 3: 1:30pm – 2:30pm

John Stimpson

Writer, Director, Filmmaker

John Stimpson is one of the most prolific filmmakers working in the Boston area today.  His interest in film and television began at Harvard where he was President of the Hasty Pudding Theatricals. He spent five years as a professional actor in Los Angeles before returning to the East Coast and refocusing his talent on the other side of the lens. As a result, Stimpson approaches directing from an actor’s perspective, truly believing that motion pictures are the ultimate collaborative creative medium. John’s most recent movie, “Christmas A La Mode” was part of Lifetime’s “It’s A Wonderful Lifetime” campaign in 2019.

“It’s Hard To Tell When A Tradition Begins…”

Lecture 4: 3:00pm – 4:00pm

Gary Vaillancourt

Fresh off of introducing his new book, Gary Vaillancourt will be on-hand to talk about the Vaillancourt Folk Art journey. The lecture, which includes highlights from the book, will focus on the growth of a Christmas company during an environment that has seen many retails close their doors. See how traditions have grown the business and what’s the future holds.

For 25 years, Collector’s Weekend has brought thousands of collectors from around the globe together under one roof for a weekend of celebrating traditions. Past lectures have included scholars—including college professors—professionals—including directors of museums and large corporations—as well as collectors giving their perspective on who they are.