For Immediate Release

Trailer for Plastic Man: The Artful Life of Jerry Ross Barrish

There was no reason Jerry Ross Barrish would become a sculptor, filmmaker, and radical sixties bail bondsman, but that's what happened ...

He grew up in a "tough guy," San Francisco Jewish family, which knew more about boxing and mob connections than it did about art. Maybe he would become a bail bondsman - but a bondsman to long-haired sixties protestors? And an upstart sculptor and filmmaker? The answer is in Plastic Man: The Artful Life of Jerry Ross Barrish.

For more information, please visit:

World Premiere of Plastic Man: The Artful Life of Jerry Ross Barrish

Sunday, Oct 5, 2:30 pm, Sequoia Theater, Mill Valley

Wednesday, Oct 8, 5:30 pm, Rafael Theater, San Rafael

Filmmaker in attendance at both shows.

Tickets available here.


SF MOMA Artist Gallery shows "Silent Night - Fog@Night" Photo Series

When: September 7 - October 24, 2013 (Gallery Hours: Tues - Sat, 10:30 am to 5:00 pm)

Where: Fort Mason Center, 2 Marina Blvd., Building A, San Francisco, CA 94123

Opening Reception: 1-3 pm, September 7

Works by James Torlakson, and William Farley. "Silent Night - Fog@Night" Photo Series is on the Mezzanine Level.


International Latino Americano Film Festival in Havana, Cuba Screens "Tribute" and "Sea Space"

When: December 5, 2011

Where: Havana, Cuba

William Farley's "Tribute" and "Sea Space" screen in program to mark the fiftieth anniversary of San Francisco's Canyon Cinema.

Mill Valley Film Festival Screens "The Walk"

When: Saturday, October 8, 2011, 1:30 p.m.

Where: CineArts @ Sequoia Theater 2, 25 Throckmorton Ave, Mill Valley, CA 94941

When: Tuesday, October 11, 2011, 9:15 p.m.

Where: Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center, 1118 Fourth Street (Between A & B), San Rafael, CA 94901

Filmmakers William Farley and Hyeyon Moon will be in attendance for questions and answers after the screening.

Mendocino Film Festival Screens "The Walk"

When: Saturday, June 4, 11:00 am

Where: Matheson Performing Arts Center, Mendocino, CA

Filmmakers William Farley and Hyeyon Moon will be in attendance for questions and answers after the screening.

William Farley's Films Featured In "Moving Images: Making Movies, Understanding Media", The First Comprehensive High School / College Textbook About Film and Video Production

Published: 2010/2011

Publisher: Cengage Learning

"Moving Images: Making Movies, Understanding Media" is the first comprehensive media studies and motion picture production textbook of its kind. Offering a series of thematically-driven units that provide opportunities for collaborative learning, enhancement of creativity, and development of higher order thinking, this book is designed to get your students excited about making movies. Students will not only learn how to analyze and appreciate motion pictures, but they will also study the fundamental skills needed to create and produce their own movies. With an included interactive DVD students will also be able to view short films, as well as use a selection of film files to enhance their editing skills.


San Francisco Cinematheque screens "Being"

Radical Light: Bay Area Found Footage - from Junk to Funk to Punk

Curated and presented by Craig Baldwin

When: Wednesday, November 10, 2010, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Victoria Theatre, 2916 16th Street, San Francisco, CA

Presented in association with Pacific Film Archive and Oddball Film + Video Gibbs Chapman, Steven Dye, William Farley, Kerry Laitala, Douglas Katelus, Thad Povey, Jay Rosenblatt, Greta Snider, Michael Wallin + program curator Craig Baldwin in person [members: $5 / non-members: $10]

Among the rich and richly varied filmways of the Bay Area is that rather outré (or is it?) practice known as Found Footage filmmaking, a mode of production that's enjoyed a peculiarly prominent place in the local heritage. Among the many reasons are the living legacy of Dada and anti-Art, a sense of Pop humor about the pre-fabricated, and, crucially, the no-budget, contrarian, yet generous impulses from the Beat, Hippie and Punk sub-cultures. A shifting matrix of life-styles, psycho-geographies, art- and social-histories-and a whole lotta creativity! - has enabled us to discover and share our own uses and meanings for things. A crafty imagination can still make its own way through an ever-more bewildering forest of signs - maybe even swing from those trees! This is what is both supremely ironic and profoundly redemptive about this ingenious bricolage aesthetic. (Craig Baldwin)

Thad Povey: Thine Inward-Looking Eyes (1993) 2 min. / Dean Snider: Stink (1984) 5 min. / Chick Strand: Cartoon le Mousse (1979) 15 min. / William Farley: Being (1975) 10 min. / Michael Wallin: Decodings (1988) 15 min. / Bruce Conner: Cosmic Ray (1961) 4 min. / Jay Rosenblatt: Prayer (2002) 3 min. / Greta Snider: Futility (1989) 9 min. / Kerry Laitala: Hallowed (2001) 11 min. / Gibbs Chapman: an examination of exhibits A(1) through E(5) (2001) 19 min. / Steven Dye: Zero (1996) 3 min. / David Sherman: Tuning the Sleeping Machine (1996) 13 min.

Santa Fe Film Festival Screens "Shadow & Light"

When: Thursday, December 3, 2009, 2:45 p.m.

Where: Jean Cocteau Theater, 418 Montezuma Avenue, Santa Fe, NM

Filmmaker William Farley will be in attendance for questions and answers after the screening.

San Francisco Film Society Screens "The Old Spaghetti Factory"

When: Sunday, October 25, 2009, 4:00 p.m.

Where: Clay Theater, Fillmore Street, San Francisco, CA

Screening is part of the "Cinema by the Bay" series. Filmmakers William Farley, Mal Sharpe and Sandra Sharpe will be in attendance for questions and answers after the screening.

Mill Valley Film Festival Screens "Shadow & Light"

When: Saturday, October 10, 2009, 3:00 p.m.

Where: Rafael Theater, San Rafael

When: Saturday, October 17, 2009, 2:30 p.m.

Where: Sequoia Theater, Mill Valley, CA

Filmmaker William Farley and producer Mary Morrow will be in attendance for questions and answers after the screening.

Mendocino Film Festival Screens "Shadow & Light"

When: Friday, May 29, 2009, 8:00 p.m.

Where: Matheson Performing Arts Center, Mendocino, CA

Filmmaker William Farley and producer Mary Morrow will be in attendance for questions and answers after the screening.

Ventura Film Festival Presents Rare Retrospective Of Works by Leading Bay Area Experimentalist William Farley

Films of Humor and Social Dissidence Include Music by Byrne, Boekelheide, the Kronos Quartet And a Sales Pitch from Father Guido Sarducci

When: Sat., March 28, 2009, 11 a.m.

Where: The Elks Lodge, 11 South Ash St., Ventura, CA

Information: (805) 641-3845
Additional Screening of SHADOW & LIGHT on SUN, March 29th at 5:15.

The Ventura Film Festival presents a five-film retrospective, plus one work-in-progress, screening of the work of noted San Francisco Bay Area filmmaker William Farley. Known for their sly humor, social critique, rich collaborations, and freewheeling use of cinema technique, Farley's films have won awards at film festivals around the world.

Included in the program are: "Sea Space" (1972), whose soundtrack features a stunning seaborne confession; "Made For Television" (1981), a sly and critical view of television advertising; "Tribute" (1986), a memorial for departed spirits, with music by David Byrne; and "Broke" (1995), a meditation on begging and homelessness, featuring an original score by Oscar-winning composer, Todd Boekelheide ("Amadeus") as performed by the world-famed Kronos Quartet.

Also on the program is a hilarious, rarely seen short starring Father Guidio Sarducci, which began as a 1983 Clio Award-winning public service announcement, and went on to become an art house favorite - when it can be seen. The show concludes with a sneak preview of a work-in-progress, "Shadow & Light," followed by a question and answer session with the filmmaker.


The kind of personal and experimental cinema made by William Farley over the past 30 years is increasingly difficult to see. These experimental films, made to be seen on the big screen, have played at over a hundred festivals around the world, including Sundance, Berlin, and New York.

Farley's first film, "Sea Space," was shot while he was a crew member on a cargo ship; standing watch one night, he was having fun talking into a tape recorder with another sailor, when the latter confessed to his involvement in the accidental killing of a boat full of Korean fishermen. This taped exchange became the soundtrack for Farley's film and inspired him to become a filmmaker.

"Tribute" was made after Farley's younger brother died suddenly of a heart attack. He made "Tribute" to celebrate his brother's life. Released at a time when so many were dealing with the early devastations of AIDS, and even though "Tribute" was not about that disease, the film appealed to broad audience confronting the impermanent beauty of life and the overbearing pain of loss. David Byrne, of Talking Heads fame, contributed one of his orchestrated scores for the film.

When Farley was asked to make a public service announcement by the San Francisco Art Institute, he impishly recruited his friend and subversive comic, Father Guidio Sarducci, to star in it. Also joining in the fun were George Manupelli and Don Novello. The result speaks for itself.

In 1995, Farley made "Broke," a haunting - and hauntingly current - meditation on begging and homelessness. Academy Award-winning composer Todd Boekelheide composed the original score, which was performed by The Kronos Quartet.

Farley's work-in-progress, "Shadow & Light," the latest in a series of documentary portraits of artists.

Farley is also developing an experimental hybrid biographical narrative feature film, with scenes from "The 5:10 To Cooperstown," a script based on his childhood, inter-cut with scenes from past films, including a 1982 performance by the then-unknown Whoopi Goldberg from Farley's early feature, "Citizen." The film is intended to be a commentary about creative filmmaking - its humor, danger and folly - and a memoir of extraordinary stories surrounding the circumstances of filming in India, Israel, Mexico, and the U.S.

Lorenzo DeStefano
805 641-3845 /
PO BOX 24303

© 2014 William Farley