Art on the Underground collaborate with BFI to present films from the National Archive for the final season of Canary Wharf Screen
The final instalment of Canary Wharf Screen will see Art on the Underground collaborate with BFI to produce a season of films showcasing previously unseen footage, rare and restored film, and recent experimental works by some of today’s most renowned British moving image artists. The programme, sourced from the BFI National Archive, will be screened in the ticket hall of Canary Wharf tube.
6th February – 5th March 2013
To conclude their season at Canary Wharf Screen, BFI presents a double bill of feature-length creative archive documentaries that tell the story of the century and chart the history of film itself. Both films move more or less chronologically across one hundred years of archive footage, in and out of film formats, from hand-cranked 35 mm to 16 mm, Super 8, videotape and digital technologies, nitrate and safety film. The effect of this is a rich montage of colours and textures, expressing a range and diversity of ideas within the focuses of the two films’ contrasting locations: city and coast.
From the Sea to the Land Beyond was commissioned by The Space and first performed live by British Sea Power at the Sheffield Doc Fest in June 2012.
From the Sea to the Land Beyond Director Penny Woolcock, UK, 2012 b & w / colour, 70′
This breath-taking film by award-winning director Penny Woolcock is a lyrical portrait of Britain’s unique coastline, travelling through both World Wars and during peace time into the modern age, showing it as a place of leisure, industry and wild nature. With an emphasis on the romantic and the ritualistic, the archive footage used within the film is rich and varied, with memorable images including a woman scaling a sheer cliff to collect eggs, a troupe of dancers on a pristine beach, the Thames and trading in East London, the arrival by ship of émigrés from the Caribbean and India, the building of the Channel Tunnel, a group of Edwardian gentlemen playing beach combat games on the verge of World War I and present-day holiday makers battling the elements in Blackpool. The band British Sea Power have captained this cinematic voyage with an original score that ebbs and flows with the natural sounds of seagulls, ships and snippets of speech to create a deeply compelling and uniquely uplifting film experience.
London – The Modern Babylon Director Julien Temple, UK, 2012 b & w / colour, 128′
The latest film by legendary director Julien Temple (The Great Rock ‘n’ Roll Swindle, Oil City Confidential) is an epic time-travelling voyage to the heart of his hometown using archive film and music to show how London’s immigrants – musicians, writers and artists, dangerous thinkers, political radicals and regular folk – have transformed
the city into a global metropolis. Reaching back to the dawn of film at the start of the 20th century, the story unfolds in a vivid stream of urban consciousness, twisting like the river Thames itself.
Moving back and forth in time and texture, the film’s recurring themes resonate throughout recent history: oppression and despair, division and rioting, accommodation and union. Just as turning a London street corner can surprise us with something exciting or bizarre, this vibrant film is peppered with extra ordinary images, from everyday surrealism to extreme events, from famous faces, politicians and royalty to ordinary people, all of us Londoners.
About Canary Wharf Screen
Canary Wharf Screen is an innovative motion picture screening programme that launched at Canary Wharf Tube station in March 2012, initiated and presented by Art on the Underground. The year-long project shows some of the best artists’ moving image, chosen by four of the UK’s leading film organisations and institutions, Film and Video Umbrella, Animate Projects, LUX and BFI. Canary Wharf Screen will return for a second year with a new programme and collaborators in May 2013.
Canary Wharf Screen offers an insight into the UK’s leading filmmakers and film institutions whilst surveying the strength and vibrancy of London’s arts community through its artists, commissioners, distributors and programmers.