Ernie Gehr (born 1941 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin) is an American experimental filmmaker closely associated with the Structural film movement of the 1970s. A self-taught artist, Gehr was inspired to begin making films in the 1960s after chancing upon a screening of a Stan Brakhage film. Gehr's film Serene Velocity (1970) has been selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry. Gehr served as faculty at the San Francisco Art Institute. His films have screened internationally, including retrospectives at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, The Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the Musee du Cinema in Brussels and at the San Francisco Cinematheque, and he has received awards and grants from numerous institutions, including the National Endowment for the Arts, a John Simon Guggenheim fellowship and the Maya Deren Award from the American Film Institute. His films are distributed by Canyon Cinema in San Francisco.
In representational films sometimes the image affirms its own presence as image, graphic entity, but most often it serves as vehicle to a photo-recorded event. Traditional and established avant garde film teaches film to be an image, a representing. But film is a real thing and as a real thing it is not imitation. It does not reflect on life, it embodies the life of the mind. It is not a vehicle for ideas or portrayals of emotion outside of its own existence as emoted idea. Film is a variable intensity of light, an internal balance of time, a movement within a given space. - Ernie Gehr, January 1971
Installations 2010 Picture Taking (HD, 9 1/2 min.)(available as either a single channel or a 3-channel work) 2010 Surveillance (HD) ((4-channels) 2008 Water Front (two 4-channel pieces) 2007-08 Water Series (approx.)50 single channel pieces) 2006 Crossing The Bowery (3-channels) 2005 Ocean Avenue (4-channels) 2005 Panoramas of the Moving Image: 19th Century Mechanical Magic Lantern Slides & Dissolving Views (5-channels) 2001 Navigation *2001 MoMA On Wheels