Channing Peake "Man on a Horse" (

The Channing Peake Documentary Project

A major documentary examining the life and work of Channing Peake is presently in development. Tentatively titled Channing Peake: Discovering an American Master, the one-hour documentary is intended to heighten both public and critical awareness of the artist’s accomplishments and to foster discussion of his place in the history of American art.

The effort is being spearheaded by Paul Bockhorst, an award-winning writer, producer, and director of documentary films. He was curator of the exhibit A Time and A Place: The Artistic Encounter Between Channing Peake and Elaine Badgley Arnoux, 1956-1962, which took place at the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art in 2012. Mr. Bockhorst also produced a video of the same title, which is available on this website.

Funds for the production of Channing Peake: Discovering an American Master are currently being sought. Donations are tax-deductible and go to the non-profit fiscal partner, the Santa Barbara Cultural Development Foundation, a 501(c)(3) educational corporation.

ABOUT PAUL BOCKHORST / The Production Company

Paul Bockhorst is a writer, producer, and director of documentary films. He has an extensive background in film and television production, as well as journalism. Most of his work has been created for broadcast on PBS stations, but he has also produced programs that have aired on ABC, Turner Broadcasting, and the Disney Channel. He is the recipient of numerous professional awards, including several Emmy Awards. He holds an M.F.A. degree from Columbia University in New York.

In recent years, Paul Bockhorst has focused on subjects pertaining to the arts and the natural environment. He works regularly with museum curators and academics and is actively engaged in the interpretation of specialized subject matter. In his projects he strives to make the arts accessible and meaningful to the general public. He works regularly with artists, architects, art historians, museum personnel, and a variety of cultural organizations on programs that interpret the arts, often in a historical context.

Paul Bockhorst has produced numerous documentaries on subjects related to art and architecture. His latest production is Pursuing Beauty: The Architecture of Bernard Maybeck (2012). Other productions include Designing with Nature: Arts & Crafts Architecture in Northern California (2010); Beautiful Simplicity: Arts & Crafts Architecture in Southern California; (2008); Greene & Greene: The Art of Architecture (2003); Impressions of California: Early Currents in Art, 1850-1930; and Visions of California: The Story of California Scene Painting, 1925-1950. A mini-documentary produced by Paul Bockhorst productions, entitled An American Masterpiece: The First Church of Christ, Scientist, Berkeley, can be seen on YouTube.

Documentaries produced by Paul Bockhorst Productions are used widely as interpretive and educational resources in museums, colleges, universities, preservation organizations, historical societies, and other cultural institutions. They have been shown at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Huntington Library and Art Collections, San Marino; the Berkeley Art Museum; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; and the San Diego Museum of History, among others.

Additional information about Paul Bockhorst Productions is available at,

1 Comment

  1. Paul Cypress
    March 22, 2014

    Channing Peake and I became good friends in 1978, (though when I was a boy my grandparents use to converse with him. He was at that time doing a mural downtown Santa Barbara. I was a silent observer). In 1978 when I was 28, I was often at Channing’s studio in San Ynez where he did an exhibition of Spring landscapes of Solvang and San Yenez. We had a lot of nice parties that I entertained at and I wrote a lot of music about artist at that time and one song about him. Often I would take beautiful girl friends up to San Ynez from Santa Barbara who were mesmerized by his paintings. Young people loved him and considered him a magical figure. He sometimes talked about his painting with Braque and Picasso in the South of France when he was a young man and mentioned an exhibition in Rome. Picasso came to visit and stay with Channing in San Ynez. Picassso’s daughter kept in touch with Channing after her Father passed on. During that time the very last Picasso exhibition made a visit to Santa Barbara. The Jet set and high society life did not appeal to Channing. He like the outdoors, horses and the wild west. He introduced me to Lame Deer the Lakota Medicine man whom I would record 2 LP’s with. In fact I brought my recording studio to Channing’s art studio to record Lame Deer in San Ynez. It could be rightly said that the restoration of the American Native Religion began in Channing’s Art studio.He met his last wife Cheri during that time and he painted the most incredible portrait of her. She inspired him and lifted him up and he loved her very much. He had just completed an incredible mural at the Biltmore in Montecito but the new owners were very conservative and there was a law suit over it that Channing won. It really was beautiful. Channing was a very humble, meek and generous man. I fell out of contact with him when I became a political fugitive in 1982. However we talked on the phone. He was married to Cheri at the time and they were very loyal friends to me.. I went to live in Jugoslavia where I recorded the second LP with Lame Deer and got myself into more trouble, I was not living back in California until just after he died but I telephoned and paid my respects to his wife Cheri. In the late 1970′s Channing’s children tried or succeeded to acquisition his painting collection. Channing had just spent a few months in Jail because he drank a lot. I did not let anyone bad mouth him and I defended him. After he met Cheri he changed his drinking habits for the better and was very happy. He was good friends with Gregory Peck who often visited him as well as and other Santa Barbara celebrities. He was kind to me and I had been kicked out of Santa Barbara high school twice and had a renegade reputation in Santa Barbara since elementary school, but he did not care what people said about somebody, he was a man who made up his own mind. A real Cowboy and a great human being, Artist and friend. Channing represented the best of Santa Barbara.

    Paul Cypress

    Share this:


Leave a Reply