"Real peace, if it ever exists,
will not be based on the fear of War, but on the love of Peace.
It will not be the abstaining from an act, but the coming of a
state of mind."
-- Herman Wouk
Vern's passion began at an early stage. "At the age of nine I discovered I could relive in film what I experienced in reality, and in this way recreate the magic and inspiration of the original experience at any moment."
"Perhaps" he thought " through the utilization of media technologies, maybe other people could experience these same fleeting beautiful experiences of Now."
And subsequently he found that yes indeed, it was possible to instill this ephemeral experiential truth into other beings. If but for at least a moment. It was an exciting discovery, one that would lead the young boy to a career that has touched upon the lives of millions of people.
Born at the start of a new year, 1954, Vern's personal heroes have been the inspirational figures Mahatma Ghandi and Martin Luther King Jr.
He trained himself under the world-renown world-global thinker and futurist Buckminster Fuller, and under his godfather and namesake Wernher von Braun, the world-renown space scientist.
His interests have reflected a spiritual heritage ranging from astrology, aerospace and astronomy, to architecture and animals, from physics and electronics, to Zen and reality, and the coupling of music and words, with film and multi-media, to depict his endless fascination with human kind's place and purpose in the universe.
Born in Santiago, Chile, Vern early developed an international perspective for his work. His travels have been extensive--throughout the entire World--from the slums and proud new cities of Mexico, to the beauty and cultural magnificence of Nepal and Bali. He's traveled throughout Western and Eastern Europe, and into the Soviet Union photographing the transition of totalitarian domination transforming into the difficult-yet-energizing new era of personal freedom. His photos of the slums in Bombay, are emotionally riveting documents of proud lives lived in the barest of conditions. Vern's ability is to find the joy amidst the sorrow, is best described as the internal manifestation of the soul reaching out in universal knowingness.
"The only thing I see and feel when I meet someone for the first time, that magnificent knowing when I look in peoples eyes, YES! that unspoken communication transmits, You and I are the same, the equal. YES! You and I are ONE, no matter what instilled boundaries we've programed inside our minds. When I take pictures of people, it seems to me the wall of differences melt away. It is at that moment that we are saying to one another- I know that You know, and I know that You know that I know, that we are One!"
When asked for one of his most extraordinary achievements, Vern lists his tour in the year of 1984 throughout most of Africa thoroughly documenting the various peoples across the continent, documenting the famine conditions, the relief camps, the health care facilities, and the work of organizations such as Save the Children, UNICEF and Care amongst others.
"It was an eye-opening experience for me" says Vern "one that forever altered the course of my life."
Speaking to this powerfully committed man, one is easily persuaded of his conviction of the role of media in effecting social change.
His photographs have been published internationally and seen by millions of people around the globe. His images have appeared in Publications from TIME and LIFE to Billboard Magazine and TV Guide. His videos continue to sell through out the world.
Vern lives by the credo that the camera is a crucial instrument for social change.
A firm believer in the capacity of a photograph and film production to not only translate a cultural experience to a viewer, but also to literally transform the viewers experience in such a way that appropriate action occurs.
"I feel that the power of the media, and the raw image specifically, have indisputable impact in communicating the reality of the situation in such a way that people are allowed to have this experience for themselves, and thus discover within, their ability and desire to effect change."
He has developed this vision and himself to an international level, spawning various enterprises including a state of the art studio in San Francisco called Wernher Krutein Productions, Inc. A subsidiary of Wernher Krutein Productions, Inc. PHOTOVAULT (tm), comprises a general stock library of 800,000 Copy Righted images on subjects ranging from Aerospace to Zimbabwe.
Wernher Krutein Productions, Inc. was founded in 1979, and is currently producing work in six divisions.
His clients range from those of the Fortune 500, such as Hewlett Packard, Trans America, and Control Data Corp., to non-profit organizations such as Save The Children, UNICEF, and the End Hunger Network.
His work has been featured in major events such as Live Aid, and with organizations such as the United Nations. Millions of people have been captivated by his photos of famine throughout South America, India and Africa, and hundreds of thousands more have developed a keener awareness and appreciation of Africa's disparate peoples and their unique problems through his remarkable photographs and productions. Verns unique approach in this area is how he demonstrates the potential and promise of people in transition.
Recently Wernher Krtueins work was featured in the opening
of the new millenium at Times Square New Years Celebration. His
work was used to fill the seven huge screens that surrounded Times
Square welcoming in the year 2000. Kruteins mages were used from
all over the world to help illustrate the uniquness and oneness
of humanity. It was truly one of the first global events ever
Photographically his hero is Ansel Adams, the patient, meticulous photographer of nature, the seer and communicator of beauty, who's work, being, and stature, has had some of the most significant impact on our perception, understanding and thinking, of this fragile Spaceship Earth we all commune in.
Vern has also been producing Video and Film productions for over 20 years. Having grown up in the Hollywood area, his love for motion picture production has led him to a ceaseless pursuit of wonderment and impact within this medium. His Film, Video, and Multi-Media productions are noted for their combination of technical perfection and heartfelt sensibility.
On a lighter side, Vern (aka Vern Dawg) likes to have fun with
life, frolicking with butterflies in fields of flowers, chasing
rainbows and lightning at any opportunity that arises. Sometimes
Vern Dawg can be heard barking instead of speaking, and to those
who understand derive a lot of meaning from this form of communication.
When driving, many times Vern measures his distance efficiency
not by kilometers per gallon, but rather rolls of film per kilometer.
He has even created a system of units called the Cribinses
Scale of Film Utilization (tm), that helps him keep track
of the prodigious amounts of film he shoots and edits.
Recently Vern finished work on a book that was an opportunity for him to muster his capabilities in desktop publishing. This book "ALL THE COLORS WE ARE, the Story of How We Get Our Skin Color" is a childrens book about the scientific process that gives us all our skin color. The completion of this project has given Vern another outlet for communicating the beauty and magic within human beings. At present Vern is publishing a series of photography books with diverse subject matter from Lighthouses of America to SAN FRANCISCO FROM LAND, SEA AND AIR and CHICAGO AT NIGHT.
Krutein is also producing a sereies of mosaics that cover many diffeernt aspects of visiual imagery. Resembeling a painting style known as Pointilism, these mosaics are composed of 8.000 individual images relating to a specific theme.These 8,000 individually unique images are layed in by hand and allows Vern to break away from the strict grid pattern commonly used by others. The precision of custom placement gives him the control of inducing fine detail well above and beyond the common mosaic. Also unlike most other mosaics there is no duplication of images.
It is benign anger and deep fervor that drives Vern's solidly
rooted passion. An anger born out of direct encounters with the
incredible insanity that continusouly manifests itself from the
beligerence of organized intolerence.
His soft nature contrasts boldly with his conviction to see to it that perhaps Human Kind has the ability to transcend an ego-centric tactile reality that translates and manifests itself into destructive hostility, and to transform this inate multi-billion years old survival instinct, into a strategically based loving vision of the future. This compounds itself into an all inclusive if not ominous credo that says:
"We are all One, and we better all begin to act from this point of view, and nurture the only possible long term manifestation of human consciousness"
One may construe this quote to be naively idealistic, however, it is perhaps, the only way that humanity will manifest the utopian possibilities that are within reality's reach.
Solidly built, Vern presents a confident appearance and assurance going about his work.
Today he lives and works in San Francisco. In loving memory of my wonderful cat MeYou.