Every year, the Oscar-nominated animated shorts present a pool of feelings. Each piece accentuates and lingers on a certain aspect of the human condition, and watching all in succession leaves a lively feeling brimming in the viewer. The directors strategically use color, form of animation and voice to explore subjects that almost require deviation from real life to begin to adequately express what they want to portray in their work in such a short glimpse.

The Amherst College theater and dance department celebrated Valentine’s Day in an unorthodox way this past weekend. Theater and dance major Lauren Carter ’17 performed her senior acting thesis, Charles Mee’s “Big Love,” last Thursday through Saturday in Holden Theater. Directed by department professor Yagil Eliraz, “Big Love” follows three sisters who flee their home country to escape arranged marriages to three men. They ultimately take refuge in an Italian villa, where they convince its wealthy homeowner to take them in, despite his reservations toward refugees.

Ben Kissinger ’19 is directing a one-act play for his directing studio class with Ronald Bashford, who he worked under last year in his first production, “The Cherry Orchard.”

Q: How did you come to directing and theater? Do you do other arts?

Tired of spending Valentine’s Day sitting alone in silence? Fear no more: with my help, you’ll be able to sit alone on Valentine’s Day listening to the voices of other super bitter single people. Let us launch our attack on this sickeningly sweet holiday like a passive-aggressive couple mid-divorce. Presented to you in no particularly good order, some songs to get you through the week:

In the times of our childhood, dolls were often objects of comfort. Yet somehow as we age, these items never arouse the sentimentality and nostalgia of other childhood treasures. Instead, in our older age we associate them with a vague sense of discomfort and uneasiness. Countless artists through an array of different mediums have expounded upon this fear or discomfort, whether to confront us with an issue or just simply to scare us.

Although the Oscar buzz around it was not quite loud enough, “Paterson” — coming away with no nominations this year — is a film worth seeing. The film, nominated for Cannes Film Festival’s highest honor, the Palme d’Or, is written and directed by Jim Jarmusch (known for “Stranger Than Paradise,” “Broken Flowers”). It is a mediation on the life, or rather the week, of a poet. Paterson, played by Adam Driver, lives in the city of Paterson, New Jersey with his wife Laura, played by Golshifteh Farahani. Paterson is tied not only to the poetic line, but the bus line.

Last Friday’s traditional, bi-weekly “Coffee Haus,” which almost always takes place in Marsh Ballroom, had a special twist. The members of Marsh Arts House decided to hold an auction in order to raise funds to donate to the American Civil Liberties Union. The house members organized and each volunteered what they could auction off.

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