Plastic Man: The Artful Life of Jerry Ross Barrish

  • Bricolage Bricolage


Sequoia 1 Sun, Oct 5, 2014 2:30 PM
Rafael 2 Wed, Oct 8, 2014 5:30 PM
Lark Theatre Sun, Oct 12, 2014 8:00 PM
Film Info
Section:Valley of the Docs
Running Time:70
Director:William Farley
Producer:Janis Plotkin
Screenwriter:story consultant Adam Keker
Cinematographer:William Farley
Editor:Richard Levien
Print Source:Janis Plotkin
Note Writer:Tim Sika


Jerry Ross Barrish’s tale is one of metamorphoses: First an activist bail bondsman in 1960s San Francisco, then an indie filmmaker, he now shapes society’s detritus into figures alive with feeling. “Don’t perish in jail-Call Barrish for bail!”was a mantra for the student activists and civil rights protesters whose release would be secured by the successful young bondsman-with-a-conscience-he also earned distinction for his film works-but his life would change dramatically while walking on a beach. Seeing images in the plastic that had washed up, he began collecting and fashioning hundreds of sculptures from it, leading critics to hail Barrish as a junk-artist magician. His story-teeming with prizefighters, gangsters, and other larger-than-life characters ranging from Willie Brown to Wim Wenders-is captured in this brilliantly photographed documentary. Plastic Man probes success, 20th-century art, dyslexia, and the struggle to find oneself through the lens of Barrish’s own, Jewish-working-class past, and ends with a monumental art commission. WORLD PREMIERE


Sponsored by Marin Art & Garden Center

Included Shorts

Bricolage (5min) More

Additional Information

William Farley’s features, documentaries and short films have won countless awards and have been broadcast and screened in hundreds of film festivals around the world, including Sundance, New York, Mannheim, Chicago, and Sydney Film Festivals. Farley’s two dramatic feature films: Of Men and Angels and Citizen, opened at the Sundance Film Festival. Included among Farley’s 20 films are the artist biographies:  Shadow & Light: The Life and Art of Elaine Badgley Arnoux, 2007, Walt Whitman’s Song of Myself, 2007 and Darryl Henriques Is In Show Business 2006.  Other notable productions include Broke (1994 & 2004) and The Old Spaghetti Factory (2000).