Instructor Bio

BFA Photography, Film Studies Minor, Ohio University 
MFA Film, San Francisco Art Institute 
PhD Media & Communications, European Graduate School 

Denah Johnston is a scholar, experimental filmmaker, curator and writer who has been teaching Film History and Studies in person and online since 2008. Denah has been at CCSF since 2015.

Professor Johnston's award-winning films have been exhibited by the National Gallery of Art, BAMPFA, San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival,  Athens International Film & Video Festival, the Calder Foundation, Queer Salon Berlin and are distributed by Canyon Cinema Foundation. Curatorial work includes experimental programs, talks and discussions at festivals, universities, galleries and salons worldwide, most recently in Australia and Mexico. Denah's Queer film programming  has been supported by the NEA and Warhol Foundation. Publications include writings on the artistic rebellion of avant-garde cinema from post-war to punk, auteur theory, the occult, women and queer filmmakers. Denah also co-edits agnesfilms, a website supporting feminist filmmaking. Professor Johnston's current research focuses on women's work behind the scenes in the history and evolution of Canyon Cinema and associated Bay Area film culture and the life and work of Curt McDowell.


Cow House Studios, Wexford, Ireland, 2023


"Women of Canyon Cinema." Doing Women's Film and Television History VI, Brighton, United Kingdom, June 14, 2023


No Future Now: A Nomadology of Resistance and Subversion, Atropos Press, 2012