POSTPONED: Sarah Turner Screening and Q&A with Rebecca Shatwell



Join filmmaker and artist Sarah Turner for a screening of her moving image work, including an exclusive preview of the first act of her FLAMIN commission currently in production, Public House. This will be followed by a discussion with Rebecca Shatwell, Director of AV Festival, addressing the concepts and approaches involved in her practice.

Public House takes participatory documentary to a whole new level. Activated in response to the community take-over of the Ivy House pub, London, SE15, this feature length film for cinemas is a multi-layered exploration of memory, community and social reinvention which fuses fact and fiction in a shape shifting genre hybrid that moves documentary into a form of opera.

The community owned Ivy House is now itself a shape shifting venue, hosting events as diverse as folk music, swing classes, knitting circles, big band Sunday roasts and samba workshops for pre-schoolers. The film mirrors this cultural transformation in a movement through documentary events, to forms of community participation that are rooted in pub culture – in this case, spoken word and performance poetry – to a minimalist opera that is composed of ambient sound and the collective voice.  The film’s final image takes the creative energy of the Ivy House out of the pub and onto the streets, where a mass community assembly re-imagines William Blake’s vision of angels on nearby Peckham Rye.

The movement from a document of individual memory via testaments which are woven through the soundscape as verbatim librettos, into the pub’s swing dance classes, which interpret the movement of the 30’s in this 30’s space, through to a staged collective authorship that explores different forms of encounters through performance poetry, is a movement from formal ethnography into the liminal/fantasy/unconscious of a community. This allegorical mirroring of the Ivy House take over stages the way that social spaces speak to us - both through the echoes of cultural memory, particularly resonant in sound - and act on us; we continually reinvent both the past and each other, through an active engagement with place. 

Public House is funded by a production award from Film London Artists’ Moving Image Network (FLAMIN) and a research award from the School of Music and Fine Art, University of Kent.

Films included in the screening: 

  • Ecology, 2007 (extract)
  • Perestroika, 2009 (extract)
  • Public House, 2015 (exclusive preview of opening act)

Together these three films form a trilogy of concerns that are broadly linked through ideas of ecologies; psychic, environmental and social.

The discussion will be followed by a networking social, where you will have the chance to talk to Sarah and Rebecca on an informal one-to-one basis.

When: This event was due to take place on Wednesday 8 July 2015 but has now been postposed until further notice.

Where: Tyneside Cinema (Digital Lounge, 2nd floor), 10 Pilgrim Street, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, NE1 6QG.

Thanks to the support of our funders tickets are available on a fully refundable basis to those who attend the event. The deposit payment is £4 (inc fees), which will be refunded in full to attendees the day after the event.  Please note that places must be booked in advance; payments cannot be taken on the door and there will be no admission without prior registration. Booking closes at 3pm on Wednesday 8th July. Cancellations made within one week of the event cannot be refunded.  

About Sarah Turner

Sarah Turner trained at St Martin’s School of Art and the Slade School of Fine Art. She is an artist, filmmaker, writer, curator and academic. Her feature films include Ecology, 97mins, 2007, Perestroika, 118mins, 2009, (featured in Tate Britain’s major survey: Assembly), and Perestroika:Reconstructed, conceived and executed as a gallery work (Carroll Fletcher Gallery, London, April/ May 2013).

Turner’s short films include Overheated Symphony, UK, 10mins, orchestrated for Birds Eye View Film Festival 2008, Cut, 17 mins, 2000, was broadcast on Channel 4, and A Life in a Day with Helena Goldwater, 20 mins, 1996, and Sheller Shares Her Secret, 8 mins, 1994, both headlined Midnight Underground when they were also broadcast on Channel 4. Sarah has had feature scripts commissioned by the BFI, Film Four Lab and Zephyr Films. She is currently Reader in Fine Art and Director of Research in the School of Music and Fine Art, University of Kent.

About Rebecca Shatwell

Rebecca Shatwell is Director of AV Festival in Newcastle upon Tyne. She curated the last three editions of the biennial Festival, which included solo exhibitions with artists including: James Benning, Torsten Lauschmann, Jessica Warboys, On Kawara, Cyprien Gaillard, John Gerrard, Akio Suzuki and Lara Almarcegui, in addition to newly commissioned live events with Phill Niblock, Bruce McClure, Test Dept, Hamish Fulton and Charlemagne Palestine amongst others. Film projects have included a focus on Wang Bing, Pat Collins, Mathieu Kleyebe Abonnenc, Duncan Campbell, Yervant Gianikian & Angela Ricci Lucchi and Ben Rivers. She is on the board of directors of Pavilion in Leeds, previously worked at CCA, Glasgow and ran an independent space for sound art.

Image: Sarah Turner, still from Public House (2015)



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