Keller . . .
H. Lenn Keller was born in 1951
in Evanston, Illinois. She is a San Francisco based filmmaker
and photographer, whose work deals with political and spiritual
issues, including identity politics. She has a B.A. in Visual
Communication from Mills College, and is currently at work on a
series of mixed media photographs of people of color in natural
settings in an attempt to re-construct and expand cultural
frames of reference. She has made two 16mm short films, Ife
(about a black French lesbian living in San Francisco), and
Sightings (about two African American lesbians' humorous
attempts to connect romantically). She is currently at work on a
screenplay, which she hopes to independently produce and direct.
She has been exhibiting her photography since 1981.
"E" was published in "Underexposed: The Photographic Image &
Black Lesbian Identity" in Aché (a journal for African American
"Dark Adventure" was exhibited in Hypothalamic In[Queer]ies,
curated by Robert Kellery for CameraWork Gallery, San Francisco,
CA 9993. This piece was one of six mixed-media photographs on
the issue of racial objectification and fetishism of African
American lesbians within the lesbian community.
After studying film and video
production, photography, and communications theory, I graduated
from Mills College in Oakland in 1984 with a B.A. in Visual
Communication. My first involvement in the independent
filmmaking community was on a low-budget feature film in San
Francisco, shortly after graduation, as a still photographer.
But it wasn't until 1992, that I really became involved with
film, working on a number of independent projects as an A.D.,
doing script continuity, and shooting stills.
Having the opportunity to observe the production process, I
wrote, directed and produced a 16mm short in 1993, Ife. If you
want to know what it was like to produce a no-budget short film
while being unemployed, check out the article that I wrote
called Make Your Own, which was published in femme flicke, (a
very cool women's film zine). In 1995, I wrote, directed and
produced my second short, Sightings,and now I am writing two
feature length screenplays, which I'd like to direct. I'm
interested in working on independent film productions, music
videos etc. as a still photographer, script supervisor, or
assistant director, and I can be contacted at
My greatest and most challenging creative project thus far
though, has been having and raising my daughter as a single
mother. She's all grown up now -- she's smart as a whip,
gorgeous, and funny as all get out, and is one of the most
incredible women I know. I'm looking forward to collaborating on
a film project with her some day.
when I'm not working on a screenplay, or working on a film,
video or photo project, I support myself doing transcription for
writers, researchers, and filmmakers for my company, Ear To The
Ground Transcription. I also occasionally torture the neighbors
by practicing scales on the tenor sax.
© H. Lenn Keller
E, from Aché, 1991
photograph, © H. Lenn Keller
photograph, © H. Lenn Keller
Desire: Exploring Butch/Femme
is a documentary film in progress which is
examining what butch/femme identity and
dynamics mean now; and how our understanding and communication
about these terms inform our sense of core gender identity;
how we relate to ourselves, each other; and how we access and
name our sexual desire as lesbians.
We're looking for Interviewees --We are based in the
San Francisco Bay Area, and are still looking for people to
interview. We are interested in lesbians, bisexuals or FTMs
who identify as butch or femme (however you define those
terms). It is our hope to be able to travel to several cities
across the country to conduct interviews, but are not sure
that we will be able to raise the funds to do so. For the time
being, we are focusing on interviewing people in the Bay Area
(or in close proximity). We will also be filming narrative
vignettes, and are seeking actors. We are committed to
representing a diversity of voices, so we invite butches and
femmes of all ages, racial, cultural, and class backgrounds to
participate in this important documentary.
We Need Your Help -- If you have producing,
fundraising, web site design, film or video experience and
would like to intern or assist us, please contact us at:
or (415) 487-6290. Website:
Source: Lenn Keller's Website:
Women Artists of the American West:
To View Lenn's Gallery: