Image and Sound

Friese-Greene film

Strange things going on at the Tate. This Friday, 7 September, Tate Britain is hosting Image and Sound, which it describes as

Iconic British silent films shown with live music dominate the enormous central gallery, and Steve Beresford, Scanner and David Toop perform together for one night only.

The event is organised by Artprojx (“a co-marketing, event production and creative strategic consulting agency”), and mixes artists’ films with experimental music/sounds and British silents – in this case, Anthony Asquith’s A Cottage on Dartmoor (1929), with Stephen Horne at the piano, and Claude Friese-Greene’s The Open Road series of colour films 1924-25, with the much-travelled Neil Brand on the piano.

Goodness knows how the ‘iconic’ silents will blend in with the experimental sounds, artists’ films (including Haris Epaminonda’s Light, Tarahi II, Tarahi IIII, Tarahi V, Michael Nyman’s Moscow 11.19.31, and what sounds like a special treat, Emily Wardill’s Basking in what feels like ‘an ocean of grace’, I soon realise that I’m not looking at it, but rather that I AM it, recognising myself). With a bar available in the gallery and folk wandering to and fro, it should make for an interesting happening, but possibly not the ideal circumstances in which to savour the silents (though they are at least in their own room, The North Duveens).

Still, why not go along and support Neil and Stephen, and see if I’m wrong. The Tate’s growing commitment to exhibiting silent film is commendable, and if they can continue to place the films before new audiences, even if the settings may sometimes be challenging, this can only be to the good. Doors open at 6.00pm with tickets on a first-come-first-served basis, and the event runs til 10.00pm. The central Image and Sound event runs 7.00-9.00, The Open Road is at 6.30 and A Cottage on Dartmoor at 7.45.

There’s rather more information on the Artprojx site than on the Tate’s.

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