‘The Seer: A Portrait of Wendell Berry’ is premiering this weekend at SXSW. As an avid fan of the Kentucky farmer/writer, Nick has been very involved with the project. In Nick’s words:
When I learned that Laura Dunn was making a Wendell Berry documentary, I immediately alarmed her with the enthusiasm of my enquiry. ‘Please let me do whatever I can to help your film! I will coil cable, I will sweep the barn, I will make sandwiches, I’ll wrangle livestock! I’m great with sheep! You name it!’ Laura placatingly said that she had those areas well-covered, but that I could possibly serve as a valuable cheerleader and fundraiser for the effort – so, after I calmed down, that is what I have proudly become.
As she was editing the picture, Laura happened upon a section in which Mr. Berry talks about artists making things, including a stool, and she thought it would be neat to have some footage of just such a stool being made, and, lucky for me, I just to happen to make things like stools in my woodshop. We brought in a gorgeous Arri Alexa camera and shot my hands and my tools and some California walnut with a great deal of personality as I fashioned it into a 3-legged stool with mostly vintage hand tools. My face never appears, and so I believe it is the finest film work I have done to date. I am sincerely humbled and honored to have the chance to support this beautiful poem of a film, espousing the world view of our most important American writer and thinker…and Seer, I reckon.
They currently have a kickstarter campaign going so show your support! Plus there’s an option to get a handmade stool by the Offerman Woodshop.