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All The People Screening + Q&A with Sarah Miles

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Cinema Obscura, Wiveliscombe

Wiveliscombe Primary School New Hall

North Street

Wiveliscombe

TA4 2LA

United Kingdom

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A programme of films by artists Ben Rivers, Luke Fowler, Sarah Miles and Adam Chodzko, curated by Josephine Lanyon

Introduction by the Curator and Q&A with artist Sarah Miles

Ben Rivers, Origin of the Species, 2008 (16 mins)
Luke Fowler, Depositions, 2014 (24 mins 32 secs)
Sarah Miles, Magnificent Ray, 2000 (23 mins)
Adam Chodzko, The Pickers, 2009 (17 mins, 52 secs)

In this beautifully absorbing programme, we find people casting their futures by re-imagining Britain’s rural past. The title is drawn from the county’s fiercely independent 1911 motto ‘all the people of Somerset’ and gathers powerful stories of creative culture, agricultural work and scientific investigations from the hinterlands.

The democratically produced films show how identities are formed through labour, love and learning in the landscape. The programme’s collection of insurgent voices is inspired by Mark von Schlegel science fiction writings commissioned as part of Ben Rivers film Slow Action. Von Schlegel described Somerset as ‘distinguished by its fervent political culture’ and ‘revolutionary principles (that) extend into visual arts and music’.

In each work the film-maker is a quiet presence alongside the people and places. The films are thus a fusion of subject and landscape, fact and fiction, live action and archival material. The programme, hopes to speak to all the people; past, present and future.

We start our journey with Ben Rivers, who was born in Somerset, his film Origin of the Species, (2008) focusses on one man’s life pondering Charles Darwin. “I don’t know what’s going to happen … I can’t see the world surviving, unless there’s some awful disease or something wipes man out.” Shot on an acre of land in Scotland, our mind wanders through 3.8 billion years of human existence on planet earth whilst our eye is focussed on a waft of smoke and an adventurous beetle.

Luke Fowler’s Depositions, (2014) explores the role of the Highland traveller in Gaelic Highland history and culture. The visual essay challenges documentary facts with religious beliefs and science fictions and incorporates tantalising images of the elements: fire, water and air. The film combines archival footage from the Isle of Barra with new footage and interviews to re-tell dignified life stories from a contemporary perspective.

Depositions (2014) Courtesy of Luke Fowler and LUX, London.

Sarah Miles returned to her childhood towns of Bridport and Portland in West Dorset to make Magnificent Ray, (2000). The work re-casts the landscape as a backdrop for a wild west dream movie. The rolling fields, abandoned buildings and fairgrounds are charged with teenage sexual tension. Miles draws on personal memories, potent sound tracks, feature film archives and local girls to frame our rural heroine.

Magnificent Ray (2000) Courtesy of Sarah Miles and LUX, London.

Adam Chodzko’s, The Pickers, (2009) involves a group of Romanian migrant workers at a strawberry farm in Kent. At the beginning of the film the labourers are pictured in a hydroponic hi-tech environment but by the end we understand the subjects are also the authors of the film. As the individuals edit footage from a 20th century film archive of British migrant hop pickers they reflect on what it would mean for British migrant workers to come to Romania.

The Pickers (2009) Courtesy of Adam Chodzko and LUX, London.

All The People is curated by Josephine Lanyon, commissioned by Somerset Art Works and working in partnership with Somerset Film, supported by Lottery Funding from Arts Council England.

Ticket: £5 pay at the door, booking recommended.

All The People is also toured to the following venues during Somerset Art Weeks:
THUR 28 September 7.30 – 9.30pm (doors open at 7pm),
Roxy Cinema, 36 High Street, Axbridge, BS26 2AF
Ticket: £5. Box Office: 07725 051523
Book online: https://allthepeopleroxycinema.eventbrite.co.uk

FRI 29 September, 7.30 – 9.30pm
Strode Theatre, Church Road, Street, Somerset, BA16 OAB
Ticket: £8/£7 concessions. Box office: 01458 442846
Book online: Book online: http://www.strodetheatre.org.uk/whats-on/view/all-the-people/

More information: http://somersetartworks.org.uk/allthepeople

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Date and Time

Location

Cinema Obscura, Wiveliscombe

Wiveliscombe Primary School New Hall

North Street

Wiveliscombe

TA4 2LA

United Kingdom

View Map

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