Marc Karlin
Date: 6 - 29 April 2012
Location: Video Shop


  • 1Video still from 'The Haircut', 1998

Video still from 'A Dream from the Bath', 1997


Picture This is pleased to present an exhibition focusing on the work of British filmmaker Marc Karlin.

Karlin is an important but neglected figure within the British film avant-garde of the 1970s, 80s and 90s. He was a member of the film collectives Cinema Action and the Berwick Street Film Collective, active within the film union ACTT and the Independent Filmmakers Association, and a founder member of the group which set up the journal of independent film, Vertigo, in 1993.

His groundbreaking films for television in the 80s and 90s combine documentary and fiction film tropes to explore the themes of memory, history and political agency. Karlin was a committed political filmmaker, but his dense, yet subtle films are also rich meditations on the nature of filmmaking, the formation and collapse of ideologies, and the endurance of the human spirit.

Two short films made for television – Haircut (1998) and A Dream from the Bath (1985) – shown on monitors in the Video Shop illustrate the range of Karlin’s practice. Haircut is a brief but searing satire on New Labour’s rise to power, whilst A Dream from The Bath is a more meditative and philosophical work about the history of film production in the UK and the migration of the cinematic to the stage of everyday life, utilising still images and elaborate domestic tableaux around which the camera restlessly tracks.

On show in the display cabinets of the Video Shop are a series of page layouts designed by Kate Hepburn for a book version of Nightcleaners (1974) by the Berwick Street Film Collective begun in 1975, but never published. Also on display are a number of journals featuring texts by Karlin and production stills from Nightcleaners and its sequel, ’36 to ’77 (1978).

Exhibition preview:

Thursday 5 April 2012, 6 - 9pm

Opening times:

Thurs - Sun
1 - 6pm

Visit Video Shop

Picture This
Corner of Mardyke Ferry Road and Sydney Row
Spike Island

0117 925 7010

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