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The Films of Richard Myers


Richard Myers received the 2014 Cleveland Arts Prize Lifetime Achievement Award.

DescriptionRichard Myers has been producing experimental and documentary films for over 40 years. The Films of Richard Myers chronicles these films, along with descriptions and reviews by such film critics as Roger Ebert, Arthur Knight, Roger Greenspun, Kevin Thomas, and Amos Vogel, as well as short reviews by Stan Brakhage and Pauline Kael. The major part of the book consists of 180 photos from the films, all photographed by Myers.

With a background in painting, printmaking, and still photography, Myers began making films in the early 1960s when independent experimental films were truly independent. Myers conceived of the ideas, wrote the scripts, photographed, directed, and edited the films. His actors were family and friends, from his wife Pat to his grandmother, mother, and son, to Kent State University faculty and students.

“There is probably no filmmaker more successful in transmitting his imagination to the screen than Ohio experimentalist Richard Myers. . . . The maker of Deathstyles, Akran, and 37-73 becomes more ambitious with each film. In Floorshow he presents a rich stream-of­consciousness flow of images that encompasses past, present, and fantasy. In addition, it is a contemplation of the filmmaking process and film aesthetics as well as life and art. . . . What Myers projects is an accurately personal vision of life so beautifully shaped and paced that we’re able to connect with it even if we cannot expect to decipher its private meanings.”
—Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times
“Most of Myers’s films are surrealistic works based on his dreams. For Myers, dreams comprise an indispensable link in self-understanding. He reveals in their ability to illuminate the darker corners of our consciousness—those recesses removed from rational thought and everyday reality . . . Myers’s filmic ‘dream journeys’ liberate the viewer by dynamiting the walls between reality and illusion, past and present. They throw logic and rational understanding out the window. They are less objects to watch than places to inhibit—carnivals of the unconscious with midway attractions that range from collage imagery to free associations.”
—John Ewing, Director of the Cleveland Cinematheque and Curator of Film, Cleveland Museum of Art

AuthorRichard Myers’s films have been screened all over the United States, from the Cleveland Cinematheque to the Museum of Modern Art, from the Ann Arbor and Chicago Film Festivals to the Whitney Museum of American Art. Myers has received awards from the Guggenheim Foundation, The American Film Institute, and the National Endowment for the Arts. In 2014 Myers received the Cleveland Arts Prize Lifetime Achievement Award.