This is Now: Film and Video After Punk, was a major new touring project curated by William Fowler (Curator of Artists’ Moving Image, BFI National Archive) that looks at artists’ film and video from the post-punk era (1978–85). The project comprises seven screening programmes and was developed in partnership with the BFI National Archive. The project toured nationally and internationally 2017-2018
The early 1980s saw an explosion in alternative and independent moving image production. Clubbers, art students, new romantics and members of the post-punk scene used cheap domestic technologies to subvert the mainstream media and to find new modes of expression. Independent VHS tapes were released, stridently bypassing censorship, and Super 8 film was embraced as a cheap yet lyrical new medium. The DIY approach of punk was powerfully reborn.
Artists defied conventional ideas about how film should be made and who should make them. Female, gay and black filmmakers pushed forward; squatting flats, clubbing and developing new styles and techniques together. Derek Jarman collaborators, John Maybury and Cerith Wyn Evans experimented with Super 8, casting friends Leigh Bowery and Siouxsie Sioux in fragmented, dreamlike scenarios. Isaac Julien and Grayson Perry explored the politics of cultural and personal representation, and major pop video director Sophie Muller (Beyoncé, Rihanna, The Strokes) printed and layered images on 16mm.
This is Now celebrates the diversity of independent moving image production from the UK in the 1980s, a unique moment when cheap new technologies enabled new voices to be heard. A new aesthetic developed that would shape the look of film, television, fashion and music for many years to come. The BFI National Archive has restored twenty Super 8 and 16mm films from this period and the majority of titles are presented for the first time in over three decades. Developed over several years, these programmes revisit a key period in the cultural life of the UK and reflect on the currency that this work has with internet video and artist filmmaking today.
Works by George Barber, Steve Barron, Jennifer Binnie, Duvet Brothers, Vanda Carter, Steven Chivers, Cerith Wyn Evans, Kim Flitcroft & Sandra Goldbacher, Judith Goddard, Gorilla Tapes, Akiko Hada, Richard Heslop, Jeffrey Hinton, Isaac Julien, Michael Kostiff, Mike Mansfield & Adam Ant, John Maybury, Sophie Muller, The Neo-Naturists, Grayson Perry, Tim Pope, John Scarlett-Davis, John Smith, George Snow, Cordelia Swann, Anna Thew, Holly Warburton and Jill Westwood.
Performing the Self
New ways of thinking about identity, the self and the body were all part of punk’s powerful legacy. This unlikely cocktail of visionary experimental films and bright, brash pop videos shows how visual culture changed radically at the start of the 1980s. Genre boundaries became blurred and the use of masks and make-up challenged the conventions of identity construction and representation – often to the sound of a catchy electronic melody.
- Cerith Wyn Evans, Still Life With Phrenology Head, 1979, 14 min
- Steve Barron, Human League: Don’t You Want Me, 1981, 4 min
- John Scarlett-Davis, Chat Rap, 1983, 15 min
- Mike Mansfield & Adam Ant, Adam Ant: Stand and Deliver, 1981, 3 min
- Mike Mansfield & Adam Ant, Adam Ant: Prince Charming, 1981, 3 min
- John Maybury, The Modern Image, 1978, 13 min
- John Maybury, Solitude, 1981, 13 min
- Grayson Perry & Jennifer Binnie, Bungalow Depression, 1981, 4 min
- The Neo-Naturists, The Private View, 1981, 7 min
The mainstream media was treated like a giant library to be plundered for provocative play and subversion in the early 1980s. Whether filming their TV screen with a Super 8 camera or deftly copying tape-to-tape, artists grabbed and juxtaposed disparate material to disrupt the dominant ideologies of the age and create new visual music. The programme includes notable examples of the Scratch Video phenomenon.
- Cerith Wyn Evans, The Attitude Assumed: Still Life With Still Born, 1980, 19 min
- Jill Westwood, Skinheads and Roses, 1983, 7 min
- Jeffrey Hinton, Pop Dolphin, c.1983, 23 min
- George Barber, Tilt, 1984, 6 min
- George Barber, Branson, 1983, 2 min
- Duvet Brothers, Blue Monday, 1984, 4 min
- Gorilla Tapes, The Commander in Chief, 1984, 4 min
- George Barber & George Snow, Art of Noise: Legs, 1985, 6 min
- Cordelia Swann, Passion Tryptych, 1982, 4 min
The moral, political and symbolic integrity of the image itself is interrogated and overturned in these richly textured films. John Maybury casts Siouxsie Sioux and fashion designer David Holah in one of the singularly most stunning and ambitious Super 8 works of the era, the existential genderfuck Court of Miracles. Young filmmakers bring on the post-modern age.
- John Maybury, The Court of Miracles, 1982, 44 min
- Vanda Carter, Glory Boys? , 1983, 4 min
- Isaac Julien, Territories, 1984, 24 min
- Cerith Wyn Evans & John Maybury, Psychic TV: Unclean, 1984, 9 min
Before and After Science
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.
- Anna Thew, Lost For Words, 1980, 26 min
- Grayson Perry, The Green Witch and Merry Diana, 1984, 20 min
- Tim Pope, Men Without Hats: Safety Dance, 1982, 3 min
- Steven Chivers, Catherine De Medicis Part 2, 1984, 25 min
Still from Steven Chivers, Catherine de Medicis Part 2, 1984
Through a Glass, Darkly
Provocative filmmakers in the early 1980s pursued occult interests, treating the moving image like a mirror or a crystal ball; a surface of divination to remap perception and question distinctions between what is and what might be, the objective and the subjective, the body and the mind. The programme includes challenging, transgressive work originally connected to the industrial scene.
- Jill Westwood, The Wound, 1984, 18 min
- Cordelia Swann, Winter Journey in the Hartz Mountains, 1983, 12 min
- Michael Kostiff, Liquid Video, 1983, 10 min
- Akiko Hada, The Branks, 1982, 7 min
- Holly Warburton, All Veneer and No Backbone, 1980-84, 5 min
- Richard Heslop, 23 Skidoo: F.U.G.I., 1983, 5 min
- Jennifer Binnie, Grayson/Flowers/Jewels, 1985, 3 min
- Judith Goddard, Lyrical Doubt, 1984, 16 min
Still from Akiko Hada, The Branks, 1982
Video Killed the Radio Star
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.
- John Smith, Echo and the Bunnymen: Shine So Hard, 1981, 32 min
- The Miners’ Campaign Tapes: The Lie Machine, 1984, 16 min
- The Greatest Hits of Scratch Video Volume 2, 1984, 28 min
Entering the Dream Space
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.
- John Maybury, The Technology of Souls, 1981, 11 min
- Sophie Muller, In Excelsis Deo, 1983, 26 min
- Cerith Wyn Evans, The Miracle of the Rose, 1984, 25 min
- John Maybury, The Union Jacking Up, 1985, 18 min
Derek Jarman visits the United States and buys a copy of William Burroughs’ novel, Naked Lunch (1959). He then returns to the Slade School of Fine Art where he was studying painting (1963–67) and starts hanging out with gay artists, most notably David Hockney.
May: Super 8mm film stock is introduced by Eastman Kodak. It largely superseded the older standard 8mm format, as it had larger frames that yielded a clearer image.
Jarman attends film screenings at the Arts Lab and Better Books. The first American experimental film he sees is Kenneth Anger’s Scorpio Rising (1963) at Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts.
William Burroughs collaborates with filmmaker Antony Balch on the experimental film The Cut-Ups (1966), which was inspired by Brion Gysin’s approach to the cut-up technique’ and contains footage shot in Paris, London and Tangiers from 1961–65. Gysin had introduced Burroughs to the cut-up method at the Beat Hotel in Paris in September 1959.
Derek Jarman moves his studio (and in 1969 his dwelling) to a warehouse at 51 Upper Ground, near the corner of Blackfriars Road on the south bank of the River Thames, a place that was to become ‘a Mecca for London’s avant-garde’ with its parties thrown by Jarman with Peter and Andrew Logan.
A theatre student gives Derek Jarman a Super 8 camera, which he uses to film friends in his loft-style apartment at Bankside. Over the next ten years, Jarman continues to make ‘home movies’ with friends using props and whatever is at hand. He later says that these films are more important than his feature films.
Genesis P-Orridge establishes the music and performance art collective COUM Transmissions in Hull. Other prominent members included Cosey Fanni Tutti and later Peter ‘Sleazy’ Christopherson and Chris Carter.
Summer: Jarman and friends throw a massive party to bid farewell to their studio at 51 Upper Ground, which is scheduled for demolition. Tennesee Williams is reported to have turned up with no invitation. Ken Russell comes and asks Jarman to design sets for The Devils (1971).
Jarman moves to 13 Bankside (1970–72), on the top floor of a riverside warehouse alongside Southwark Bridge. To cope with the cold of his uninsulated attic room, Jarman famously set up a greenhouse as his bedroom. Bankside also became well-known for parties and hosted a constant steam of friends and visitors.
Studio Bankside, Derek Jarman, 1970–72, super 8, col and b/w
Super 8 with optical sound and loaded in 2-hour cassettes are used for in-flight movies.
Jarman borrows a 16mm projector and organises film screenings at Bankside, showing everything from Hollywood movies to Warhol, Genet, Cocteau and films from the London Filmmakers’ Co-op.
September: Sony introduces a new 3/4 inch analogue recording videocassette format called U-matic.
Andrew Logan holds his first Alternative Miss World competition at Downham Road in Hackney. David Hockney is one of the judges.
More on the history of the Alternative Miss World here.
Ways of Seeing, the highly influential four-part BBC television series by writer John Berger and producer Mike Dibb, is broadcast on television.
Summer: Jarman moves to a riverside studio on the third floor of Block A1 Butler’s Wharf next to Tower Bridge, where he lives and works until 1979. A thriving artist community begins to form at Butler’s Wharf and Jarman’s neighbours include Andrew and Peter Logan.
On the waste ground next door, Jarman films the ritualistic fire scenes for In the Shadow of the Sun, with a fire maze, candles and flashing mirrors. A soundtrack by Throbbing Gristle is added in 1980.
The Siren and the Sailor (aka At Low Tide), Derek Jarman, 1972, Super 8, col.
I’m Ready For My Close Up (aka Miss Gaby Gets it Together or All Our Yesterdays), Derek Jarman, 1972, Super 8, col.
In the Shadow of the Sun, Derek Jarman, 1972–74/1980, 50 min., Super 8 blown up to 16 mm in 1980, col.
Cabaret Voltaire, initially comprising Richard H. Kirk, Stephen Mallinder and Chris Watson, is formed in Sheffield. Some of their early experiments were released on the Industrial Records cassette, 1974-1976.
Genesis P-Orridge and Cosey Fanni Tutti relocate from Hull to London. They move into a squat and obtain a basement studio in Hackney, which they name the ‘Death Factory’.
Genesis P-Orridge meets William S. Burroughs, who introduces him to Brion Gysin.
Derek Jarman films the 2nd Alternative Miss World, held at Downham Road, Hackney.
- Andrew Logan Kisses the Glitterati, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Andrew, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Red Movie (aka Tourist Film), Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col. shot through red filter
- Stolen Apples for Karen Blixen, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, b/w
- Gerald Plants a Flower, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8
- Gerald Takes a Photo, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8
- Tarot (aka The Magician), Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Garden of Luxor (aka A Garden in Luxor), 1973, Super 8, col.
- Kevin Whitney, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Beyond the Valley of the Garden of Luxor Revisited, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Burning of Pyramids, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Death Dance, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Arabia, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col. and b/w
- Green Glass Bead Game, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Sulphur, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- A Journey to Avebury, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Ashden’s Walk on Møn (aka Walk on Mon or Space Travel, A Walk with Mon), Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Shad Thames, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, b/w
- Café in Tooley Street, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, col.
- Miss World, Derek Jarman, 1973, Super 8, b/w and shot through pink filter
- Fred Aston Fashion Show, Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- Bill Gibb Show, Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- Duggie Fields at Home (aka Duggie Fields), Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- Picnic at Ray’s (aka Picnic at Rae’s or Lunch at Rae’s), Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- Herbert in NYC (aka New York Walk Don’t Walk), 1974, Derek Jarman, Super 8, col.
- New York City (aka NYC), Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, b/w
- Dinner and Diner, Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, b/w
- The Devils at the Elgin (aka Reworking the Devils), Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, b/w
- Fire Island, Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- My Very Beautiful Movie, Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- The Kingdom of Outremer, Derek Jarman, 1974, Super 8, col.
- Sloane Square: A Room of One’s Own (aka Removal Party), Derek Jarman, 1974–76, Super 8, col.
Derek Jarman (as Miss Crepe Suzette) wins the 3rd Alternative Miss World, held at Andrew Logan’s studio at Butler’s Wharf.
The Sex Pistols play at St Albans School of Art.
The Sex Pistols play at Chelsea School of Art.
The Sex Pistols play in Bromley linking up with the ‘Bromley Contingent’, who go on to have a substantial influence on fashion.
- Domestic Sanitation, Helen Chadwick, 30 min, mag, LFMC Distributed
- The Sentence, Claire Cresswell, 10 min, standard, silent, LFMC distributed
- Shadow of a Journey (-1980), Tina Keane, 20 min, w/mag strip, Viva 8
- Four Portraits, James Mackay, 12 min
- Corfe Film (aka Troubadour Film), Derek Jarman, 1975, Super 8, col.
- Ken Hicks, Derek Jarman, 1975, Super 8, col.
- Sebastian Wrap (aka Sebastiane Mirror Film or Mirrors or A Break from Sebastiane), Derek Jarman, 1975, Super 8 blown up to 16 mm in 1981, col.
- Karl at Home, Derek Jarman, 1975, Super 8, b/w
- Gerald’s Film, Derek Jarman, 1975, Super 8, col.
The Sex Pistols practice in Jarman’s studio and he films them on Super 8.
Malcolm McLaren and Vivienne Westwood give a talk at Fashion Forum – New Designers at the ICA, encouraging and exploring the crossovers between art, fashion and pop culture. The Sex Pistols are in the audience.
Derek Jarman shoots some of the first Super 8 footage of the Sex Pistols playing at the Valentine’s Ball at Andrew Logan’s studio in Butler’s Wharf. NME are there and the occasion is drug-fuelled and confrontational.
May: 2B Butler’s Wharf opens as a venue for showing performance or live work. Regular Saturday evening shows began with presentations by artists who had their studios there, but quickly extended to include work by other artists and associates. 80 shows were held there over 2 and a half years, over 30 of which involved film projection.
More on 2B Butler’s Wharf here.
Following a series of public profiling events, including the infamous gig at the freetrade hall in Manchester, McLaren organises a 1960s-style psych band night at Screen on the Green in Islington, North London. The Buzzcocks, the Clash and the Sex Pistols play, preceeded by a screening Kenneth Anger’s Kustom Kar Kommandos (1965) and Scorpio Rising (1964). John Maybury is there and has an ‘epiphany’.
COUM Transmissions’ now infamous Prostitution exhibition is held at the ICA. The exhibition represents the end of COUM’s art-related activities. Genesis P-Orridge and Cosey Fanny Tutti, together with Peter ‘Sleazy’ Christopherson and Chris Carter, relaunch themselves as the industrial band Throbbing Gristle at the opening. The exhibition, which included performances as well as photographic documentation, pornographic images, tampon sculptures and other ‘props’ from previous actions, is met with hostile reaction from the public and national press. Tory MP Nicholas Fairbairn wrote in the 19 October issue of the Daily Mail: ‘Public money is being wasted here to destroy the morality of society. These people are the wreckers of civilisation.’
- The Sex Pistols in Concert, Derek Jarman, 1976, Super 8, b/w,
- Ula’s Fête (aka Ula’s Chandelier), Derek Jarman, 1976
- Houston Texas, Derek Jarman, 1976, Super 8, col.
- The Sea of Storms (aka Kingdom), Derek Jarman, 1976, Super 8, b/w
- Sebastiane, Derek Jarman, 1976, 16 mm blown up to 35 mm, col.
Summer: John Maybury designs and constructs ‘punk’ sets for Derek Jarman’s Jubilee (1978).
- Jordan’s Dance, Derek Jarman, 1977, Super 8, col. (sections included in Jubilee)
- Jordan’s Jubilee Mask (aka Jean-Marc Makes a Mask), Derek Jarman, 1977, Super 8, b/w
- Art and the Pose (aka Arty the Pose), Derek Jarman, 1977, Super 8, b/w, later blown up to 16 mm and included in The Dream Machine (1986)
- Sketch for Films, Michael Maziere, 3 min
- Colour Prejudice, John Devine, 12 min, silent, colour, LFMC distributed
- Field Film No.2, Terence Ellis, 12 min, LFMC distributed
Cabaret Voltaire sign to Rough Trade Records, who later release acclaimed albums such as The Voice of America (1980) and Red Mecca (1981).
Steve Strange and Rusty Egan, founding members of the new wave synthpop band Visage, begin organising ‘Bowie nights’ on Tuesdays at Billy’s nightclub on Dean Street in Soho. They begin to make a name for themselves as a nightclub host and DJ respectively.
- Modern is as Modern Does, John Maybury, 15 min
- Sunbathing for Idols, John Maybury, 25 min
- From Face to Face (slides of images), Anna Thew, 16 min, mag, colour + B/W, LFMC distributed
- The Sentence, Claire Cresswell, 10 min, standard, silent, LFMC distributed
- Every Woman for Herself and All for Art, Derek Jarman, 1978, Super 8, b/w, blown up to 16 mm in 1981
- The Fountain, Derek Jarman, 1978, Super 8, col.
- The Pantheon, Derek Jarman, 1978, Super 8, col.
- Italian Street Scene, Derek Jarman, 1978, Super 8, col.
- Italian Ruins, Derek Jarman, 1978, Super 8, col.
- Jubilee, Derek Jarman, 1978, 35 mm, col.
Commissioned by Island Records, Jarman produces a 12-minute promotional music video for three songs from Marianne Faithfull’s album Broken English: ‘Witch’s Song’, ‘The Ballad of Lucy Jordan’ and ‘Broken English’.
Strange and Egan relocate their club night from Billy’s to Blitz on Great Queen Street in Covent Garden, which becomes widely acknowledged as home to the New Romantic movement. The club runs every Tuesday and attracts unusual, flamboyant and sharply dressed young people of various sexual persuasions, glamourising against the greyness of 1970s Britain. Helen Robinson’s Covent Garden shop PX inspires many of their looks. Steve Strange works as the doorman and is responsible for its exclusive door policy, frequently turning away patrons who aren’t dressed creatively enough and famously denying entry to Mick Jagger in a highly publicised incident. Boy George works as a cloakroom attendant. Synthpop bands Visage, Spandau Ballet and Duran Duran become closely associated with the New Romantic movement.
The milliner and fashion designer Stephen Jones leaves Saint Martin’s and becomes a regular attendee of London’s Blitz nightclub. As one of the ‘Blitz Kids’, he hangs out with Spandau Ballet, Duran Duran and Jean Paul Gaulthier and shares a house with Boy George and Grayson Perry, competing with them to wear the most outrageous outfits to Blitz.
The Conservative Party win the general election and Margaret Thatcher becomes the first female Prime Minister of UK.
From Face to Face, Anna Thew, 18 min
Broken English: Three Songs by Marianne Faithfull, Derek Jarman, 1979, 12 min, Super 8 and 16 mm blown up to 35 mm, col. and b/w, includes ‘Witches Song’, ‘The Ballad of Lucy Jordan’ and ‘Broken English’ The Tempest, Derek Jarman, 1979, 35 mm, col.
David Bowie visits Blitz and asks Strange and three other Blitz Kids to appear in the video for his number 1 hit, ‘Ashes to Ashes’.
The Bow near Kings Cross where Jarman, Pet Shop Boys and Michael Clark went. The scene is centred around style and exclusivity.
Jarman and Genesis P-Orridge start collaborating on a series of short films and music videos, including In the Shadow of the Sun (1980), TG Psychic Rally in Heaven (1981), Pirate Tape (1982), Diese Machine ist Mein Antihumanistiches Kunstwerk (1982) and Imagining October (1984).
March: Spandau Ballet play at the Scala cinema, following two Buñuel films and an announcement/performance from Robert Elms.
May: Nick Logan starts monthly music, fashion and culture magazine, The Face (1980–2004).
July: Cerith Wyn Evans has his first one-man show at the London Filmmakers’ Co-op.
Robert Elms documents pop and fashion scene in The Face.
Terry Jones launches i-D magazine (1980 – present).
Oxford University students Carey Labovitch and Simon Tesler found Blitz magazine (1980–91).
Daily Telegraph describes discos as ‘dehumanising threat to civilisation’.
- Muscle Lens, Steve Farrer, 3 min
- Cosmetic Angels Under Pressure, John Maybury, 20 min
- So This Is Now, John Maybury, 30 min
- The Attitude Assumed 1: Still Life with Still Born, Cerith Wyn Evans, 25 min
- Action Sentimentale, Cerith Wyn Evans, 9 min
- Still Life with Chairman Mao, Cerith Wyn Evans, 10 min
- Still Life with Phrenology Head, Cerith Wyn Evans, 10 min
- Phoelix, Ann Ambrose (starring Cosey Fanni Tutti)
- Blind Corner, Ian Kerr, 10 min, 2 screens, Recent S8
- The Missing (mix of elements), Jo Comino, 6 min, mag
- Liberty’s Body, Vivienne Dick, 1980, 47 min
- 20th Century Box: Teenage Ballroom Dancing tx 29/6/80 LWT
- 20th Century Box: Spandau Ballet tx 13/7/80
- 20th Century Box: Unemployment tx 7/12/80 – teenage unemployment
Compilation of William Burroughs records 1959–78 Nothing Here But the Recordings released by Industrial Records.
New Sounds New Styles magazine starts.
March: John Maybury has his first one-man show at the London Filmmakers’ Co-op.
The Brixton riots involve over 5,000 people and £7.5 million in damage as ongoing tensions erupt over rumours of police brutality against a black man in Lambeth, South London – an area afflicted by high unemployment, economic deprivation, racial tensions and poor relations with police.
Throbbing Gristle play their final performance at the Kezar Pavilion in San Francisco. Genesis P-Orridge and Peter “Sleazy” Christopherson go on to form Psychic TV, while Cosey Fanni Tutti and Carter continue to record together under the names Chris and Cosey, Carter Tutti and the Creative Technology Institute.
Super 8 films by Cerith Wyn Evans and John Maybury are featured in a two-person show, New Romantic Cinema or A Certain Sensibility, held at the ICA.
December: Andrew Czezowksi and Susan Carrington open new nightclub, The Fridge, on Brixton Road. Became a regular venue for showing video in a nightclub, often referred to as the birthplace of Scratch Video.
December 1981 – January 1982: John Maybury has an exhibition film and drawing at B2 Gallery, Wapping.
- A Courtesan and Her Reflection, John Maybury, 16 min
- Exiled from the Image Repertoire, John Maybury, 10 min
- Is Like a Melody, John Maybury, 9 min
- Solitude, John Maybury, 10 min
- The Technology of the Souls, John Maybury, 10 min, Salon of 83
- Shallow Terrorists, John Maybury, 24 min
- A Fall of Angels, John Maybury, 40 min
- Continuous Beauty Brainwash, John Maybury, 30 min
- Have You Seen Orphee Recently?, Cerith Wyn Evans, 27 min
- He Who Falls..!, Cerith Wyn Evans, 7 min
- The Attitude Assumed 2: Beauty is Only Screen Deep, Cerith Wyn Evans, 25 min, 2 screens
- Liquid Gate, Jo Comino
- Here, Malcolm Ellis, 5 min, Recent S8
- Japanese Houses, Steve Gerrard, 3 min, Recent S8/Exp Film & Video GB Berlin 25-28 September 84
- Clenched Fist, David Botsford, 12 min, 18fps, LFMC distributed
- Throbbing Gristle, T.G.: Psychic Rally in Heaven, Derek Jarman, 1981, 8min., Super 8 blown up to 16 mm, col.
- Jordan’s Wedding, Derek Jarman, 1981, Super 8, col.
Cabaret Voltaire establish the label Doublevision to release videos by themselves and other industrial/experimental artists. In 1983, they start to release records as well.
Dimitri Hegemann founds Berlin Atonal, an electronic music festival that fostered experimental acts such as Psychic TV and Test Dept.
Whitehouse play first gig (Live Action 1) at Whisky Agogo, filmed on super 8 by Paul Hurst who films two subsequent gigs. Un Chien Andalou and excerpts from Texas Chainsaw Massacre are screened before.
Neo-Naturist May Day performance at Spanish Anarchist Centre Iberico on Harrow Road, former school now squatted. Venue is a favourite for the Anarcho-Punk scene. Political but also gothic with its proximity to Kensal Green Cemetary.
26–30 May: John Maybury’s Court of Miracles (Moments Before Desire) (1982) is screened at the ICA.
14–19 June: The Neo-Naturists live in the B2 Gallery for 5 days and transform it into a 24-hour live-in installation featuring Christine Binnie, Jennifer Binnie, Wilma Johnson, Grayson Perry and others.
Whitehouse play Centre Iberico with Neo-Naturist cabaret as support.
2–5 August: New Super 8 Film in London is held at B2 Gallery. It includes an installation and four days of events and live performance, by John Maybury (with Hermine and Charlie Pig), Michael Kostiff, Derek Jarman and Cerith Wyn Evans.
The original Betacam video format is launched by Sony.
The Final Academy Event at Ritzy Cinema, Brixton celebrating William Burroughs. Cabaret Voltaire, Z’EV and Psychic TV performing for the first time. It is organised by David Dawson, Roger Ely and Genesis P-Orridge. The Dream Machine is made after the event. It is a 16mm portmanteau film made by Derek Jarman, Michael Kostiff, Cerith Wyn Evans and John Maybury, all sequences shot on super 8 and blown up. Maybury’s transgressive sequence includes brief extracts from Driller Killer by Abel Ferrari and Everything Counts by Depeche Mode.
The Final Academy event is repeated on a smaller scale at the Hacienda in Manchester. Events and happenings also take place at B2, London (centre of operations) and in Liverpool.
Opening broadcast of the new Channel 4, which focuses on youth and alternative audience.
- First Transmission – PTV
- Court of Miracles (Moments Before Desire), John Maybury, 41 min
- Greek and Turkish Life, Cordelia Swann, 3 min
- Passion Tryptych, Cordelia Swann, 3 min
- Red, Cordelia Swann, 3 min
- Split City Rushes, Anna Thew, 30 min
- Berlin Meine Augen, Anna Thew, 23 min
- Image A Pedagogie, Cerith Wyn Evans, 8 min
- For a Woman, Carol Salter, 30 secs, Recent S8
- Hey Mac, Tina Keane, Viva 8
- Confessions of a Little Girl Who Never Received A Visitation from the Sacred Heart, Sara Pirosek, 5 min, 24fps, Exp Berlin
- Divorce, George Barber, 25 min
- The Facts About John and Greenwich, George Barber, 15 min
- Rake’s Progress, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8, col.
- Pontormo and Punks at Santa Croce, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8, col.
- B2 Movie, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8 transferred to video, col. and b/w
- Waiting for Waiting for Godot, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8 and video, col. and b/w
- Pirate Tape, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8 later transferred to video and 16 mm
- Ken’s First Film, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8, col.
- Diese Machine ist Mein Antihumanistiches Kunstwerk, Derek Jarman, 1982, Super 8, b/w
Twentieth Century Box: Fashion tx 29/8/82 – Look at the development of New Romantic fashion designers
Derek Jarman presents regular Sunday evening Super 8 and 16mm film screenings at B2 Gallery.
Landslide victory for the Conservative Party in the UK general election, Margaret Thatcher wins second term.
11–12 June: The Salon of 1983 (B2 Gallery) is held at the ICA and includes work by Judith Goddard, Derek Jarman, John Maybury, Cordelia Swann and Cerith Wyn Evans.
15–19 June: The Cultural Impotence of Stupid Boys No.2, a programme of new work in Super-8 and stereo by John Maybury, is screened at the ICA.
The Equinox Event is held at the London Musicians’ Co-op in Camden Town, the first extreme noise festival, features Jill Westwood and early version of Current 93.
‘A Manifestation of the Will’ at Magneta Club, first Coil performance.
‘How to Destroy Angels’ at Air Gallery, second Coil performance, Jill Westwood also performs. It is videotaped by Cerith Wyn Evans and organised by Diana Rogerson.
Third Coil performance at Recession Studios.
Berlin, Atonal Festival II. Fourth and last Coil performance until 1999.
- Epiphany, Cerith Wyn Evans
- Parts I – IV, Cerith Wyn Evans
- Pirate Tape, Derek Jarman (completed 1986) – documents William Burroughs visit to London
- Glory Boys, Vanda Carter
- Pantomine Incubus, John Maybury, 10 min
- The Bird Sings with its Fingers, John Maybury 10 min
- Baby Monkey’s Bad Trip, John Maybury, 15 min – documentation of Neo-Naturists performance
- Beach Bath, Steven Pippin, 2 min (where was this shown??)
- Again, Cordelia Swann, 3 min
- Short Cuts for Tourists, George Saxon, 3 min
- Write! & Write Double!, Anna Thew, 3 min
- Garden Film, Anna Thew, 15 min
- Shadow, Anna Thew, 3 min
- Prima Dilattante, Steven Chivers, 10 min (-1984)
- Tortures That Laugh, John Maybury (w/music by Maybury and Jeremiah Healey), 18 min,
- New Romantics ICA 1985 Year uncertain. Various possibilities, 1978,83,86
- Circus Logic I, John Maybury, 25 min, New Romantics ICA 1985
- Spleen I, II, III, Jo Comino, 18 min, Salon of 83
- Covenant In Exile or the Stigma of Vengeance, Barry Assinder, 12 min, Recent S8
- Heart of Darkness, 15 min, Exp Berlin
- Monkey Puzzle, 3 min, 3 screens, Recent S8
- I Got You Babe, Liz Soden, 4 min 30 sec, 24fps, Exp Berlin
- The Wound, Jill Westwood
- Pardus Furor, Steven Chivers, 10 min, New Romantics ICA 1985
- Like Dawn to Dusk, Vivienne Dusk, 6 min, mag strip
- Home Movie Dong, Derek Jarman, 1983 (aka The Dong with the Luminous Nose), unfinished Super 8 with John Maybury
A new network of night buses arranged in response to much late night clubbing.
Diana Rogerson on cover of The Face in fetish wear.
Gorilla Tapes, the British Scratch Video collective, is founded by Jon Dovey, Gavin Hodge, Jean McClements and Tim Morrison.
September: Derek Jarman spends an evening in Benjy’s, a gay nightclub in East London, as an experiment in filming dancing for Ron Peck’s feature film Empire State (1987). The footage is shot on a portable Olympus VHS camera, which was then considered cutting-edge technology. The film was never intended to be shown, but was released by Peck in 2014 under the title Will You Dance With Me?
- Catherine de Medici (Terror of the Antique), Steve Chivers
- The Dream Machine, Derek Jarman, Cerith Wyn Evans, John Maybury
- Big Love, John Maybury
- Isaac in Oberhausen, Steve Farrer
- Another Window, George Saxon, 15 min
- Photo Both (84 – 7), Steven Pippin, 9 min
- Lethe Rivaulx, Anna Thew, 5 min
- Citta Spelata, Anna Thew, 3 min
- Sailor Trailer and the Tinkling Laugher of Little Girls, Anna Thew, 3 screens, Super 8, colour, 7 min. Re-filmed on Super 8 from 16mm for ‘Salon of 84’, ICA Nash Rooms. Shown as the opening film at the launch of the Leicester Super 8 International Film Festival 1985, Phoenix Arts, Leicester, travelling with the Arts Council Touring Programme “RECENT BRITISH SUPER 8 FILM” curated by Jo Comino and Mike O’Pray.
- Rome Movie, Anna Thew, 24 min
- Allegro for the Dead, Anna Thew, 4 min
- Past Possessed, Steve Farrer, 5 min, 2 screens, Recent S8
- Spleen, Jo Comino, 15 min, 2 screens, Recent S8
- Whopee, Jo Comino, 6 min, 18fps, Exp Berlin 84
- Ajada, Dick Jewell, 6 min, Recent S8
- Danse des Cygnets, Larraine Porter, 5 min, 18 fps, Recent S8/Exp Film & Video GB Berlin 25-28 September 84. Credited as made by Lorraine Porter and Steven Binnion in Berlin exp fest 1984.
- Grey Moments, The Grey Organisation, 3 min, Recent S8
- Sounds Specific, Steve Binnon, 5 min, Recent S8
- Catherine et la Sirene, Martine Thoquenne, 6 min, Recent S8. Thoquenne listed as title, new title, “Catherine et la Sirene” is a guess taken from internet research
- Architecture and Romance, Julia Percy, 15 min, Recent S8
- World Enterprises, Julia Percy, 15 min, LFF at the LFMC s8
- Skin Trade, Nigel Lindley, 5 min, Recent S8
- Frames, Brian Cleaver, 12 min, 3 screens, Recent S8
- The Agony of Africa, Michael Kostiff, seperate sound, 18fps
- The Window of Ghat, 35 min, New Romantics ICA 1985
- Postcards, Peoples and Places, Richard Heslop, 80 secs. Not sure on length. “80 sekunden” was listed as the artist.
- Little Secret, Steve Binnion/Toby Kettle, 5 min, 18fps
- The Journeyman, Daniel Grilly & Christopher Jenner
- Another Goddam Party, Vanda Carter, 3 min, mag, LFMC distributed
- Spots Before Your Eyes (-1985), Vanda Carter, 3 min, sil, colour, LFMC distributed
- Voodoo Travelogue, Kate Bradley, 10 min, German Screenings
- Miracle of the Rose, Cerith Wyn Evans, 20 min
- Epiphany, Cerith Wyn Evans, 20 min
- Primitive, Brian Cleaver, mag, 18fps
- Barcelona Man, Derek Jarman, 1984, Super 8, col. and b/w
- Oxford Medley Show, Derek Jarman, 1984, Super 8, col.
- Imagining October, Derek Jarman, 1984, Super 8 and video blown up to 16 mm, col. and b/w
Bruce Lacey wins Andrew Logan’s Alternative Miss World with his robot R.O.S.A.B.O.S.O.M. The event was held at Brixton Academy and was co-presented by Janet Street Porter and Simon Callow.
9–11 September: The Handsworth Riots take place near Birmingham and are the first in a wave of similar uprisings across the country in the autumn of 1985. Racial tension and unemployment are major factors. Filmed footage of the civil unrest form the basis of the Black Audio Film Collective’s 1986 film essay, Handsworth Songs.
- The Angelic Conversation, Derek Jarman
- The Emperor’s Mother and Other Song, George Saxon, 25 min
- Photo Both 2, Steven Pippin, 5 min
- The Night Side of Nature (AKA (Always) The Night Side of Nature), Steven Chivers, 17 min, colour, 1 screen, New Romantics ICA 1985
- Stylish Internationalism (part II), Michael Kostiff, New Romantics ICA 1985
- The Poor Girl, Grayson Perry, 45 min, standard 8, 18fps
- Fragments Towards the Chimera, Holly Warburton, New Romantics ICA 1985
- The Child and the Saw, Heslop/Landin, 25 min, New Romantics ICA 1985
- Moonlight, Vanda Carter, 8 min, B/W, LFMC distributed
Jarman is diagnosed as HIV positive. His illness prompts his move to Prospect Cottage, Dungeness, where he lived until his death in 1994.
- The Queen Is Dead: A Film by Derek Jarman, Derek Jarman, 1986, Super 8 edited onto video and blown up to 35 mm, col. and b/w, includes ‘The Queen is Dead’, ‘There is a Light that Never Goes Out’ and ‘Panic’
- The Dream Machine, Derek Jarman, 1986, video, col.
- Caravaggio, Derek Jarman, 1986, 35 mm, col.
- Handworth Songs, John Akomfrah