As one of the players at the helm of the explosion of underground art and culture in the East Village of the 80s, Richard Kern was a prolific filmmaker and photographer. Kern’s raw low-budget films, shot on cheap 8 mm cameras and emblematic of the Cinema of Transgression 80s moment, were humorous, punky, violent, and shock-driven collaborations with the likes of Nick Zedd, Lydia Lunch, David Wojnarowicz, Sonic Youth, Henry Rollins, and bevy of other illustrious and notorious New York characters. On March 16th, Kern joined us for a program of short films, a Q&A moderated by Apology magazine editor Jesse Pearson, and a show of his 80s photographs.
Kern has graciously donated 11 archival test prints available for purchase to benefit The Cinefamily. Nine of the Prints are newly matted and framed to the artist's specifications. A small number of unframed prints are also available. Proceeds from the sales are a tax-deductible donation to benefit The Cinefamily, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Richard Kern, photographer and filmmaker remains, first and foremost, a portraitist. For more than two decades Kern has sought to unravel and illuminate the complex and often darker sides of human nature. Kern makes the psychological space between the sitter, photographer and audience his subject. With his dry, matter of fact approach, he underlines the absurdity of truth and objectivity in photography while playing with our reliance upon taxonomies around sexual representation. - Matthew Higgs
Kern is a regular contributor to Vice and Purple and has published 11 books. His films and photographs have been exhibited at MOMA, The Whitney Museum and in more than 50 solo shows around the world. Kern lives and works in New York City.