The Gallery at Plymouth College of Art and LUX, the national agency that supports and promotes artists working with moving image, have worked in collaboration to present This is Now: Film and Video After Punk, an exhibition that looks at artists’ film and video from the post-punk era in the UK (1978â€“85).
This period saw an explosion in alternative and experimental filmmaking amongst clubbers, art students, new romantics and members of the post-punk scene, who embraced cheap new camera technologies and used them to bold and uncompromising effect.
This exhibition, which opened as part of Plymouth Art Weekender and will continue until Wednesday 26 October, has been specifically conceived for The Gallery, and brings together a selection of work by artists and filmmakers including John Maybury, Cerith Wyn Evans and The Neo Naturists that explore ideas around identity, performance and technology.
Shown alongside original archive material, many of these works have been digitally remastered by the BFI National Archive from Super 8 and 16mm films that have been out of circulation for over 30 years.
The exhibition includes some works that contain nudity and explicit material that may not be suitable for all ages; it is recommended that young people visiting the exhibition are accompanied by an adult.
Opening the Moving Image season in The Gallery at Plymouth College of Art, This is Now also encompasses a programme of free talks and film screenings (full details listed below).
Events include ‘The Occult Roots of MTV’ talk by BFI Curator William Fowler on Wednesday 19 October and screenings of the short film programmes ‘Video Killed the Radio Star?’ on Thursday 6 October, ‘Before and After Science’ on Wednesday 12 October and ‘Entering the Dream Space’ on Thursday 20 October.
Advance booking by phone or email is recommended to avoid disappointment – 01752 203434 / firstname.lastname@example.org.
Zoe Li, exhibitions manager (maternity cover) for The Gallery at Plymouth College of Art, said: ‘This is an exceptional opportunity for us to present this exhibition with LUX, which also includes some fascinating archive materials, such as posters and photographs, from pop-music to video, revealing some of the breadth of the underground arts and culture in the post-punk era.
“This is a perfect exhibition to kick off our Moving Image season at the gallery and we’ve got an exciting programme of talks and screenings planned to take us through to 2017.’
THIS IS NOW ASSOCIATE EVENTS
Curator Talk: THE OCCULT ROOTS OF MTV
Wed 19 October, 5.30 – 7.30pm
In this talk and subsequent discussion, William Fowler, Curator of Artists’ Moving Image at the BFI National Archive, considers the impact of the vibrant, provocative work of the 1980s on the burgeoning pop video world and its most distinctive and visible of platforms: MTV.
Screening: VIDEO KILLED THE RADIO STAR? (Cert 12)
Thur 6 October, 6 – 7.30pm
Early independent video releases were the revolutionary, DIY antidote to a television system that was only just gearing up to a fourth channel. They bypassed censorship and provided a platform to the marginalised and unsanctioned. This eclectic selection includes a very rare John Smith title and punchy, stuttering Scratch Video works by The Duvet Brothers, Kim Flitcroft & Sandra Goldbacher, Gorilla Tapes and George Barber.
Screening: BEFORE AND AFTER SCIENCE (Cert 15)
Wed 12 October, 6 – 7.30pm
Grayson Perry, Anna Thew and Steven Chivers conjure strange, new, lo-fi worlds with the help of close friends and collaborators, resisting both modern, Christian patriarchy and the conventions of traditional movie-making. Folk tales and arcane beliefs are re-imagined on Super 8 and London is turned into a bleak, austere, post-apocalyptic world.
Screening: ENTERING THE DREAM SPACE (Cert 15)
Thur 20 October, 6 – 7.30pm
Weaving together film and video, often utilising religious imagery and introducing colour effects and surface texture, filmmakers generated a new, vividly transcendental style by the end of the post-punk era. Key examples of this sensual, visually mature work are presented alongside other dynamic, hallucinogenic pieces that explore the dreamlike state.
(from a press release)