Friday, November 5, 2021

Coming up 11/8! Sky Bergman, Filmmaker Professor of Photography and Video Cal Poly State University talks about her film Lives Well Lived

Lives Well Lived celebrates the incredible wit and wisdom of people aged 75–100, who reveal their secrets for living a meaningful life. Encompassing 3,000 years of collective life experience, diverse people share life lessons about perseverance, the human spirit, and staying positive in the midst of life’s greatest challenges. Their stories will make you laugh, perhaps cry, but mostly inspire you.

Filmmaker Sky Bergman with her grandmother Evelyn Ricciuti,
the inspiration behind Lives Well Lived


VIDEO Coming Soon!

About Sky Bergman, Filmmaker
Sky Bergman is an accomplished, award-winning photographer. Lives Well Lived is Sky’s directorial debut.

Her fine art work is included in permanent collections at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, The Brooklyn Museum, the Seattle Art Museum, the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, and the Bibliothèque Nationale de France (National Library of France) in Paris. Her book, The Naked & The Nude: Images from the Sculpture Series, includes an introduction by Hèléne Pinet, curator of photography at the Rodin Museum in Paris. She has shot book covers for Random House and Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Inc., and magazine spreads that appeared in Smithsonian, Arthur Frommer’s Budget Travel, Reader’s Digest, and Archaeology Odyssey.

Sky Bergman currently is a Professor of Photography and Video at Cal Poly State University in San Luis Obispo, CA.

Director's Statement

My 103-year-old Italian grandmother enjoyed exercise, making the best lasagna you’ve ever tasted, and being with family. I started filming her cooking about five years ago when she was 99 years old. I filmed her at the gym because I thought, no one will believe that my grandmother is still working out. I asked her if she could give me a few words of wisdom, and that was the beginning of this adventure.

The “graying of America” is no longer a futuristic prediction: The Beatles appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show over 50 years ago and Baby Boomers are turning 70. As I was approaching my 50th year and starting to reflect on my own life, I began a quest to search for other people, who like my grandmother were living life to the limits.

In our society, the elderly are often overlooked. Lives Well Lived celebrates the incredible wit, wisdom, and life experiences of older adults living full and meaningful lives in their later years. Their stories are about perseverance, the human spirit, and staying positive during the great personal and historic challenges.

I hope these stories inspire people of every age to achieve the longevity of both health and spirit, and to realize that growing older can be a journey to be celebrated.

Our Journey

Beginning with its premiere at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, Lives Well Lived has screened in more than 200 cities. The film has won eight awards, and the theatrical run garnered enthusiastic reviews and a 100% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Organizations like Aging 2.0, AARP’s Movies for Grownups,, and Leading Age have screened Lives Well Lived. Now the film is available on PBS!

A more in-depth look at the passion behind the film and its filmmaker, Sky Bergman.
Interview with Growing Bolder: “Putting Active Aging in Focus”

Major Themes in Lives Well Lived

Secrets to a Life Well Lived

How do you define a Life Well Lived?


Everyday people overcoming incredible adversity.

Documentary Filmmaking

Demonstrates the ways in which documentary filmmaking can make a difference in society and the way we perceive the world around us.

Intergenerational Connections

The film offers a new appreciation of the past and of our cultural heritage. It inspires a search for “roots” and prepares families to collect the stories of their elders.

Sky Bergman, Filmmaker | 

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