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The exhibition of political film and video

Kidner, D. (2018) The exhibition of political film and video. PhD thesis, University of Reading

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To link to this item DOI: 10.48683/1926.00084078


In the 1970s an independent film culture was established in Britain. The filmmakers and institutions that constituted this distinct culture were a fragile coalition of activist filmmakers, proponents of structural film, artists exploring the specificity of the new medium of video, distributors, exhibitors and lobbying groups. This PhD by practice seeks to critically reflect on the historical narratives that have sutured this coalition. Across three essays questions about the nature of independence in 1970s British independent film culture, the influence of semiotic-psychoanalytic film theory through this period, and the merging of film and video cultures in the 1990s will be explored in relation to the exhibition of political film and video in the spaces of contemporary art. The PhD is presented as a "thesis as a collection of papers" in order to accommodate three essays written through the process of completing this period of doctoral research by practice. These essays will be augmented by an introduction that presents my practice as a curator in relation to my practice as a writer. In this introduction I make a claim for a new approach to the presentation of historical works of experimental film, video art and political cinema in the spaces of contemporary art, that take into account the use of archives in these presentations, and the role of the spectator. In particular I will focus on two recent large group exhibitions I have curated "The Inoperative Community" at Raven Row (December 2015 - February 2016) and "Rozdzielona Wsplnota - The Inoperative Community II" at Muzeum Sztuki w t6dz, Poland (May- August 2016), and one editorial project: a publication and DVD box set of the films Nightcleaners (1975) by the Berwick Street Film Collective and '36 to '77 (1978) by Marc Karlin, Jon Sanders, James Scott and Humphry Trevelyan.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Supervisor:Garfield, R. and Rowlands, A.
Thesis/Report Department:School of Arts and Communication Design
Identification Number/DOI:
Divisions:Arts, Humanities and Social Science > School of Arts and Communication Design
ID Code:84078


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