Goin’ Nowhere with George Kuchar

Short films by George Kuchar, curated by Herb Shellenberger

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While the small town of El Reno, Oklahoma may be obscure to many, it was a place that George Kuchar returned to again and again. Though many associate the legendary filmmaker with NYC, where he and his twin brother Mike began making films as Bronx teenagers during the 1950s, or with SF, where he taught and made films with his students at the San Francisco Art Institute from 1971 until his death in 2011, Kuchar’s unique brand of malaise and restlessness was a perfect fit for the American Midwest. The four works in this screening, each made in a different decade, show how he spent his time in El Reno: documenting the weather, shooting the breeze with locals or, most often, taking in the scene from the ambience and comfort of his motel room at the El Reno Inn. George plumbs the loneliness, horniness and wonder of experiencing this alien terrain, embracing the sights, sounds and stenches of what many on the coasts might consider flyover country.

Wild Night in El Reno
George Kuchar, US, 1977, 16mm, 6 min.

Weather Diary 3
George Kuchar, US, 1988, 25 min.

Chigger Country
George Kuchar, US, 1999, 24 min.

Visitation Rites
George Kuchar, US, 2003, 18 min.


Curated by Herb Shellenberger