Anne Richardson

Heather Petrocelli, winner of the 2019 Elmer Buehler Award for Film Preservation

by Anne Richardson


Every year, in the middle of the Oregon Film History Conference, we stop talking about Oregon’s rich film, animation and print cartooning history long enough to pay tribute to the people who do the work which makes film history research possible. This year we honor Heather Petrocelli.

In 2013, Heather preserved a set of films which came out of PSU’s Center for the Moving Image (1969-1981). She secured financial support from the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition and arranged for Gary Lacher to do the film to digital transfers.

Some of the CMI titles Heather preserved:

Urban Mosaic (1966) with Andries Deinum & Helen Gordon

Fragments (1966-67) by Andries Deinum & Tom Taylor

Caprice Will Become The Rule (1969) live music performance

The Seventh Day (1970) documenting student anti-war protests and police response

The Time Is Now: A Film About A Wood Co-op (1971) by Harry Dawson

A Man and His Work (1971) by Jack Sanders

Helen Frankenthaler at Portland State: Q & A (1972)

Living Together (1972) with Margaret Mead

Riches of the City (1976) about the architecture of Portland’s Old Town

With these films, it is possible to piece together the teaching approach PSU film professor Andries Deinum used in his Center For The Moving Image, the first film school in the PNW.

Heather Petrocelli’s masters thesis, Portland’s “Refugee from Occupied Hollywood”: Andries Deinum, his Center for the Moving Image, and Film Education in the United States, can be found online. Currently, she is pursuing a PhD in Film Studies at the Gothic Centre in Manchester Metropolitan University.

The Elmer Buehler Award for Film Preservation will be presented to Heather Petrocelli on May 3 during the fifth annual Oregon Film History Conference. Sheldon Renan, the 2018 award winner, will make the presentation.


Founded in 2007 by Anne Richardson and Dennis Nyback, Oregon Cartoon Institute uses new media, archival film, research, networking, and cross disciplinary discussion to explore Oregon film, animation, and print cartooning history.  It has no brick and mortar presence, and always works in partnership with organizations which do.

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