photograph by Jordan Seiler

photograph by Jordan Seiler

Peter has been a professional photographer for over 30 years.  His teachers include Baptist fisherman Lester Tate, dancer Martha Myers, French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson, Zen Master Bernie Glassman and singer-songwriter Janis Ian.  Peter has exhibited his photographs and StillFilms in New York, Krakow, London, Paris, Tokyo, Jerusalem, Kigali, Nanjing, Beijing, Berlin and Grand Manan, Canada. His clients include singers, teachers, chefs, playwrights, athletes, accountants, actors, fishermen and clowns.  He teaches “Photography as Zen Practice” in the US and China. is co-author with Peter Matthiessen of “Are You There Yet? A Zen Journey through Space and TIme,” and is a founding member of“The Order of DisOrder”. 


Photographic subjects include: Madonna, Bruce Springsteen, Julio Iglesias, Robin Williams,  Al Pacino, Mariah Carey, Richard Gere, The Knicks, Les Miserables, Phantom of the Opera, Little Shop of Horrors, and Radio City Music Hall.

Clients include Columbia Records, Warner Bros Records, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Texaco, Chase Bank, The New York Yankees, Serious Eats, Tassajara Zen Mountain Center, The One Club, Carnegie Hall, Live Nation, Rolling Stone, The Reading and Writing Project, and The New York Times.

Project titles include: Love is Possible (book-Israel/Palestine), The River of Change: Cultural Evolution in China (still film/book),  Wände Wende/Walls Change (still film-Berlin), Life on Earth (still film, Beginning to End (still film) The Sardine Museum and Herring Hall of Fame (book), and Tommy the Musical (book) Blinders (still film),  A Life of it’s Own(exhibition-haiku), Listening to Rwanda(book), and WordWise Cards.



In 1982, as a young Zen student of Bernie Glassman, Peter Cunningham joined Bernie Glassman and his first successor, Peter Muryo Matthiessen, on a pilgrimage to pay respects to their dharma grandparents—some of the great living Zen masters of twentieth-century Japan. In this video exclusive, Cunningham, keeping it all in the dharma family, reunites with Matthiessen and his dharma son, Michel Engu Dobbs, at the zendo on Matthiessen’s property in Sagaponack, Long Island. The three discuss their lineage, which combines elements of both Soto and Rinzai Zen, and the nature of dharma transmission within it.         -from Tricycle Magazine