Wheeler Winston Dixon

Wheeler Winston Dixon in 1969

biography | films | distribution | correspondence


biography | films | distribution | correspondence


80 minutes; 16mm; color; sound.

from Dixon's What Can I Do?An elderly woman in New York City has a group of dinner guests over to her apartment one evening, and describes the difficulties of her life and her family relationships.

Also see the What Can I Do? reviews and credits.

Un Petit Examen

With the members of the Columbus Boychoir School; Donald Hanson, Director, and Peggy Tompkins, Edith Harper, Kevin Fitzgerald.

A young boy auditions for a position in a choir academy; he is turned down. He returns home with his mother and father where the father is met with the news that his father has just died, and he must leave immediately for the funeral. Upon his arrival at his parents' home, he finds he is too late for the funeral. Later that evening, over coffee, he tries to reconcile himself with his sense of loss in a brief talk with his mother. This narrative framework serves as the jumping-off point for numerous digressions and reminiscences utilizing both "found" and originally photographed imagery.

1975, 16mm, color/so, 40m, $50

Dana Can Deal

With Saura Bartner, Kenneth Weissman, David Marotta. Soundtrack: courtesy Alan Lomax. From an idea by Jon Voorhees.

Three separate events: the birth of a litter of pups at a British reform school for delinquent minors in 1946; a dentist's convention in Cincinnati circa 1936; and common place views of New York City in the 1920s as interpreted by a visitor from Ohio.

1976, 16mm, color/so, 7m, $15, Sale $250

Madagascar, Or, Caroline Kennedy's Sinful Life in London

With Saura Bartner and David Kofke. Soundtrack: courtesy Alan Lomax. From an idea by Meri Lobel.

In 1973, Caroline Kennedy spent an evening in London dancing at a gala ball with brewery heir Erskine Guinness. The film centers around the next morning, as Caroline at tempts to make some frozen orange juice in the kitchen blender, with mixed results. Intercut with this is footage of the migratorial aspects of an unspecified African tribe, who advise the viewer to ' dance now, for tomorrow we go."

1976, 16mm, color/so, 2m, $10, sale $250

Serial Metaphysics

Soundtrack: The Mix Group.

An examination of the American commercial lifestyle, recut entirely from existing television advertisements.

"Wheeler Dixon is a masterful film editor. His sensitivity to the movement within the frame and of the camera itself allows for a nudity in his editing that is exuberant and refreshing. He is skillful not only in manipulating the flow of images but the flow of ideas as well. He has assembled his images mostly from television commercials and juxtaposed them in such a way that their very ordinary nature suddenly becomes extraordinary. Through the editing process he reveals secrets of our culture that have always been sitting on our television screens but we have never seen them be fore. It is as though his film taps into our collective unconscious by exploring the surface realities that permeate our air waves. Magical realms, pubescent fantasies, dreams of wish fulfillment, all so innocuous and tame on the television set, assume strangely mythic proportions through Wheeler's editing and even the mundane world we accept so readily begins to look somehow dreamlike and unreal This fusing of dream and waking consciousness creates the magic of SERIAL METAPHYSICS "-Bruce Rubin, Associate Curator of Film, Whitney Museum of American Art

1984-1986, 16mm, color/so, 20m, $25

The Diaries

(QuickTime movie, 2.3MB)

Memories and events from 1966 to 1984, as one event leads to another which leads to another The film is in three parts; the middle section of the film uses two simultaneously projected images

"Dixon's experimentation with images and sound distorts, studies, and categorizes the emotional levels of the film's interior narrative Archival footage of special significance to the author is interwoven with personal images shot by the filmmaker, creating a sense of ceremony and ritual in everyday events" -Gwendolyn Foster

Note this film requires two projectors Simple instructions ;are included in the film can

1986, 16mm, color/b&w, 30m, $50

Bits and Pieces

One summer night in 1969; the television speaks

16mm, b&w/so, 2m, $10


Barn dreams; the irrevocable instant

16mm, b&w/so, 6m, $10

Four Films by Wheeler Dixon

London Clouds

With Edward Williams Sound track Henri Pousseur

No matter where you arrive in legend, you find yourself at the point of initial departure

1986, 16mm, color/so, 4m

Note: LONDON CLOUDS may be rented separately for $10.


With Jon Voorhees, Berenice Klein, David Kofke Sound track Ravel/The Mix Group

"An unusually balanced film, a very simple film (but then, one which knows itself), an evolution of feeling poised (occasionally) on a single pinpoint of light, its two 'halves' like two thought processes which counter each other without ever encountering Light is the subject matter, beginning in sun and ending at fireplace But this continuity is not permitted to disturb the singular emotion of the film I am especially intrigued by the stops and-starts within zoom and pan movements-these metamorphizing eye-movement more exactly than the usual smoothness thus keeping the work most carefully personal " -Stan Brakhage

1986, 16mm, color/so, 4m

The Warm Midwestern Bedroom Does Not Matter

Brief thoughts on moving to the Midwest

1987, 16mm, color/so, 2m


With Richard Lea, Jane Back-Patton, and David Hale Shot in London, England

Memories of a long-ago summer, as London becomes a monument to the shared ambitions of three 'angel headed hipsters " In three tableaux morning in a deserted house; afternoon in Trafalgar Square; morning tea and departures

Soundtrack: Erik Satie Special effects William Nemeth/Rainbow Effects Produced with the assistance of the New Arts Lab, London

1987, 16mm, b&w/so, 12m

Package: 1986-87, 16mm, color/b&w/so, 22m, $50

Cielio Drive/Waste Motion/Gaze/A Brief History Of Japan 1939-1945/Cutting Room Newsreel

A reel of silent short films. CIELIO DRIVE is a record of a wedding; WASTE MOTION recounts a murder on Christopher Street; GAZE is a photo document of a mural I completed in 1974; A BRIEF HISTORY OF JAPAN 1939-1945 is simply that; and CUTTING ROOM NEWSREEL (photographed by David Kofke) shows pre-editing of UN PETIT EXAMEN

1987, 16mm, color/b&w, 20m (16fps), $20

Five Film Sketches by Wheeler Dixon


(First Draft Version) with John Ricciardi

Numen Lumen

Meditations on light and a window fan for Jerry Hiler and Nick Dorsky

"Warm regards fronl the West Coast -- I only wish I had seen your films much sooner than I did because we are so much closer as filmmakers than I ever could have expected." Jerome Hiler


An illustrated dream; ABCDEFGH rolls and track

Balloon Sequence

From the lost feature, MOUNIER'S SYNDROME

Children of Light

Fourth of July in New York

Package: 1969-1980, 16mm, b&w/so, 25m, $40

An Evening with Chris Jangaard; The Decline and Fall of 1960s Britain

Photographers: Jim Krell, John Vasilik; Sound: Jeff Travers; Interviewer: Wheeler Dixon

"A black and white documentary in which the director conducts a late-night outdoor interview with a European mod about his life, his imminent deportation from the United States, and his experiences during the decline and fall of 1960s Britain.' This scene is intercut at random intervals with vintage Beatles footage. The film is notable for its minimalist camera movement, reminiscent of the early films of Andy Warhol"-Rosemary Passantino

1976, 16mm, b&w/so, 40m, $50

Three Early Films

A reel of three early films, made between l968-69, and thought lost forever until they were accidentally found in a storage shed, carefully mounted on one reel. The first film, THE DC FIVE MEMORIAL FILM, begins with a young man writhing in a frenzy in an abandoned house, then moves to rephotographed films of a Nuclear Age Bomb Shelter childhood, thence to the woods for a pastoral interlude, and in one of my favorite sections of film I've ever shot, a color reel re-exposed ten times in the camera, an avalanche of images from parties, gatherings, friends and others; this section ends with John Dowd ominously signalling the viewer with a trouble light, as if to suggest that the celebration is over.The final movement of the film follows five young women, back from a peace march in DC, walking through Port Authority bus terminal at midnight, oblivious to the death around them; the entire film is scored to Charles Ives' Fourth Symphony, Fourth Movement. The second film, QUICK CONSTANT AND SOLID INSTANT,documents a Flux Mass at Voorhees Chapel at Rutgers University in l969; the final film, WEDDING, gathers together a group of my closest friends during this period in the manner of Alfredo Leonardi's classic BOOK OF SAINTS OF ETERNAL ROME.


Wheeler Winston Dixon's films are available through Canyon Cinema.

biography | films | distribution | correspondence


Wheeler Winston Dixon can be contacted via email at wdixon@unlinfo.unl.edu.

Also check out WWD's own web page at http://eng-wdixon.unl.edu/wdixon.html.

biography | films | distribution | correspondence