Barbara Hammer
Making Movies Out of Sex and Life

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Paperback Edition
Publication Date: 03-01-2010

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HAMMER! is the first book by influential filmmaker Barbara Hammer, whose life and work have inspired a generation of queer, feminist, and avant-garde artists and filmmakers. The wild days of non-monogamy in the 1970s, the development of a queer aesthetic in the 1980s, the fight for visibility during the culture wars of the 1990s, and her search for meaning as she contemplates mortality in the 2000s—HAMMER! includes texts from these periods, new writings, and fully contextualized film stills to create a memoir as innovative and disarming as her work has always been. 

The intimate memoir of an iconic lesbian filmmaker charting her sexual and artistic coming-of-age, HAMMER! was the winner for the 2010 Judy Grahn Award for Lesbian Nonfiction.

"Queer, feminist experimental-filmmaking pioneer Barbara Hammer's autobiography is one in the truest sense—it reveals her personality and her philosophies on art and, at the same time, becomes a key part of her legacy." —Library Journal

"What an amazingly inspirational book, filled with powerful stories and beautiful images. I truly love and recommend it.” —Sadie Benning, artist

“Barbara Hammer’s genius is an erotic genius, one rich in intuitive intelligence. HAMMER! reveals a spirit that is at once youthful and worldly, full of conviction, and often optimistic, bold, ravenous, and celebratory.” —Cecilia Dougherty, artist

“A brilliant and shimmering feast of art and activism. Barbara’s fearless queer intelligence illuminates every page.” —John Greyson, filmmaker

“Now the gift of Hammer’s sounds and images is matched by that of her words. Beautifully designed and illustrated, HAMMER! is a striking book, from its title to its impact.” —Patricia White, author of Uninvited: Classical Hollywood Cinema and Lesbian Representability

“A candid and colorful memoir, HAMMER! offers valuable primary source material and original feminist film theory by a pioneer of avant-garde American cinema.” —Livia Bloom, film curator

“Barbara Hammer is a true cinematic pioneer; her tremendous body of work continues to inspire audiences and artists alike.” —Jenni Olson, filmmaker