Ted Lyman began making films in the early Seventies when he was inspired by the work of the American Avant-Garde. Through his ensuing career he has maintained a belief in the power if the extraordinary syntax of the moving image exposed and explored by that movement. The overall strategy of his filmmaking is to use those tools in ways that are legible and illuminating to the general viewer. While his works differ in content and appearance, they frequently feature family and are founded on a sense of place, interaction with nature, and a commitment to expression by visual, non-narrative, means. Lyman is a Professor Emeritus at the University of Vermont and lives in the state with his spouse, Virginia Clarke, a veterinarian and activist. He values time with his grown children, Lindsay and Andrew, and his grandchildren, Elias and Mae.
Comments on Lyman’s Work
“One of the many stereotypes about avant-garde cinema is that it is inaccessible and difficult, that it makes viewers work hard for their pleasures. The films of Ted Lyman provide a perfect foil to this stereotype. Without sacrificing any of their serious experimental and non-narrative spirit, his films are sensuous, riveting and, best of all, immediately pleasurable…What makes these films instantly engaging even though they are light-years away from conventional storytelling? One key reason is Lyman’s assured, heterogeneous style. Even within the same film, he will often use an array of striking stylistic effects.” -Girish Shamu -Artvoice
“Lyman’s work … is challenging, but refreshingly clear and accessible to any one with a modicum of film literacy. The viewer cannot miss the immediate kinetic and sensory effect of Lyman’s aggregate of sight and sound; but there is a cerebral/reflective dimension underlying the immediate visceral impact of his work which is also unmistakable: the perception and fragmentation of time; the filtering of highly subjective experience through the complex mechanism of filmic form; the transformation of events through memory; the reflexive examination of the language of film; an honest hewing to the “mundane” pragmatics of everyday events, as opposed to spectacle, and an abiding interest in the relationship of nature to human experience.” -Greg Durbin, Filmmaker and Professor