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Bill Morrison

Visiting Artist

Bill Morrison’s films typically source rare archival footage in which long-forgotten and neglected imagery is reframed as part of a collective mythology. His work has been recognized with the Alpert Award, Creative Capital, a Guggenheim fellowship, and has had a mid-career retrospective at MoMA. His found footage opus Decasia (2002), with music by Michael Gordon, was the first film of the 21st century to be selected to the Library of Congress’ National Film Registry. The Great Flood (2013), with music by Bill Frisell, won the Smithsonian Ingenuity Award of 2014 for historical scholarship. Dawson City: Frozen Time (2016), with music by Alex Somers, was included on over 100 critics’ lists of the best films of 2017, and won numerous awards including a Critics’ Choice Award for the most innovative documentary. It was named the best documentary of the year by the Boston Society of Film Critics. Along with those mentioned above, Morrison has collaborated with the some of the most celebrated musicians and composers of our time, including John Adams, William Basinski, Maya Beiser, Gavin Bryars, Dave Douglas, Philip Glass, Vijay Iyer, Jóhann Jóhannsson, Kronos Quartet, David Lang, Steve Reich and Julia Wolfe, among many others.

From DAWSON CITY: FROZEN TIME (2016) - Mae Marsh in “Polly of the Circus" (Goldwyn, 1917)
From DAWSON CITY: FROZEN TIME (2016) - Mae Marsh in “Polly of the Circus" (Goldwyn, 1917)


  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.