Whale Watch (1) (1981)

Joseph Bernard

Whale Watch (1) Joseph Bernard USAS8mm > digital11 min1981

If the form of Bernard’s films derives most clearly from the films of Brakhage and the painting of the abstract expressionists, his sensibility is closest to another of the New York poets, James Schuyler, who wrote of: “A nothing day full of / wild beauty.” – Phil Coldiron

Whale Watch (1)  gathers personal sightings while on a public outing, in the company of the great mammals off Cape Cod. – Joseph Bernard 

Streaming Details

This film is available to stream globally.

Program Partners

This film is co-presented with the Art Gallery of Windsor and Windsor Endowment for the Arts.

Image credits: all artworks, stills, and portraits courtesy of the artist © Joseph Bernard.

about the artist

Joseph Bernard (USA) is an artist and filmmaker born in Port Chester, New York in 1941. His work offers a rich contribution to traditions of formalist and experimental filmmaking and has often been discussed in terms of qualities of rhythm and colour as well as the influences of abstract expressionism, photography, documentary, self-portraiture, and collage. He received a BFA from the University of Hartford (1970) and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (1972), where he also studied film history with Stan Brakhage. He has completed 100+ films since 1977, which have been exhibited at festivals, museums, and galleries, including The Museum of Modern Art, Irish Film Institute, Ann Arbor Film Festival, and the San Francisco Cinematheque, among others. He has received grants and awards from the Mellon Foundation and the Michigan Arts Council. His work is in 50+ public and private collections, including the Detroit Institute of Arts and ​​the National Endowment for the Arts. An ongoing restoration project is under way to preserve 100+ Super 8 films which he completed between 1977–1985. 40 of his camera originals were placed with The Academy Film Archive at The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in 2015. He lives and works in Troy, Michigan.

Artist interview