Peter Tscherkassky

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Peter Tscherkassky (born October 3, 1958) is an Austrian avant-garde filmmaker who works primarily with found footage. All of his work is done with film and heavily edited in the darkroom, rather than relying on recent advances in digital film.

Early life[edit]

Peter Tscherkassky was born October 3, 1958 in Vienna, Austria. He attended the Primary School in Mistelbach from 1965–1969 and Jesuit boarding school from 1969–1975 in Vienna. He attended BORG (high school) Mistelbach and graduated in June 1977. From 1977–1979 Tscherkassky studied journalism and political science as well as philosophy at the University of Vienna. His first encounter with avant-garde film was in January 1978 when he attended a five-day lecture series by P. Adams Sitney at the Austrian Film Museum.

Film career[edit]

Tscherkassky began filming in 1979 when he acquired Super-8 equipment and before the end of the year he had scripted and started off the shooting of Kreuzritter. Throughout his career he conceived numerous film festivals including “The Light of Periphery – Austrian Avant-Garde Film 1957–1988” (1988), “Im Off der Geschichte” (1990), “Found Footage – Filme aus gefundenem Material” (1991), and “Unknown Territories – The American Independent Film” (1992). He was also the founding member of the newly Austria Filmmakers Cooperative which began in 1982 and resigned from his position there in 1993. His most recent work Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in the series "Quinzaine des réalisateurs."


  • Bloodletting (1981)
  • Erotique (1982)
  • Love Film (1982)
  • Freeze Frame (1983)
  • Holiday Movie (1983)
  • Miniaturen - Many Berlin Artists in Hoisdorf (1983)
  • Motion Piction (1984)
  • Manufracture (1985)
  • kelimba (1986)
  • Shot Countershot (1987)
  • tabula rasa (1987/89)
  • Parallel Space: Inter-View (1992)
  • Happy-End (1996)
  • L'Arrivée (1997/98)
  • Outer Space (1999)
  • Get Ready (1999)
  • Dream Work (2001)
  • Instructions for a Light and Sound Machine (2005)
  • Nachtstück (Nocture) (2006)
  • Coming Attractions (2010)
  • The Exquisite Corpus (2015)


  • Senses of Cinema
  • Alexander Horwath, Michael Loebenstein (Ed.): Peter Tscherkassky, FilmmuseumSynemaPublikationen Vol. 2, Vienna 2005, ISBN 3-901644-16-4
  • Dossier on Peter Tscherkassky by Matt Levine, Jonathan Rosenbaum and Virgil Widrich (César Ustarroz, ed.), in Found Footage Magazine, issue#4, 2018. ISSN 2462-2885. [1]

External links[edit]