Packed in a Trunk: The Lost Art of Edith Lake Wilkinson

2015 | Arts & Literature / Documentary / Lesbian / Mental Health / Women's Studies | 78m | USA
Directors: Michelle Boyaner

Like a fast-paced detective story, Packed in a Trunk celebrates the life of Edith Lake Wilkinson, a gifted and prolific lesbian artist who, in 1924, was committed to an asylum. All of Edith’s worldly possessions were packed into trunks and she was never heard from again (objections had been raised at the time about Edith’s “close and constant contact” with her longtime companion Fannie).

Edith’s great-niece, Jane Anderson (Emmy Award-winning writer & director) grew up surrounded by Edith’s paintings after her mother discovered the trunks in their relative’s attic and rescued the work. This delightful film follows Jane and her spouse Tess in their efforts to find answers to the mystery of Edith’s buried life, return her art to Provincetown where she once lived and thrived, and have Edith’s contributions recognized by the art world.

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Reviews and Awards

WINNER, Audience Award, Best Documentary, Provincetown Int’l Film Festival

“Genuinely moving … an extremely well crafted movie that tells an eye-opening story.” — The Hollywood Reporter

“A must see. A detective story like no other…”—Indie Wire

“…lively, passionately personal documentary…” — Edge Media

“It will give you goosebumps” — After Ellen

“The story develops into something remarkable, with coincidences and parallels aplenty…” — The Kansas City Star