Whirlygig Cinema 1

Whirlygig Cinema’s first event was at Pangea Project, Stamford Hill, London. The event was a huge success with the bar filled to capacity.

Sixteen films were shown on the night, details of each appears below.

Drivin' South by Alex Ashton (2009)

Alex Ashton uses sound as a primary influence for many of his animations. Be it with the scintillating improvisations of Jimi Hendrix 'Drivin' South', the funky break-beats of The Winstons or the witty poetics of Karl Pilkington, Alex combines his enthusiasm for music and inane conversations with contrasting visual imagery to create lively, fast paced and reassuringly pretentious shorts that focus on light-hearted experimentation.

Film credits: Alex Ashton (Director)
Musical credits: Jimi Hendrix - 'Drivin' South'; Percy Sledge - 'When a Man Loves a Woman'

Stranger Than Fiction by Marcus Reeves & Italo Ali (2003)

Marcus Reeves is a writer and performer best known for his stage show Postcards from God The Sister Wendy Musical. In 2003, he wrote the song Stranger Than Fiction and conceived the accompanying pop video, directed by Italo Ali.

The song reflected Marcus's obsession with the life, music and career of Boy
George and was provoked by George's performance in Taboo, a musical telling
the story of his rise and fall, alongside his contemporary, performance artist
Leigh Bowery. Boy George went on to play Leigh Bowery in the show and in the
video and song, Marcus questions where the lines of impersonation, imitation and
identity cross over.

Film credits: Italo Ali (Director), Lou Harley (First Assistant Director), Marcus Reeves, Steve Richards, David Hopwood, Finn Ross (performers), Lydia Hardiman (Costume & Set Design), Fran Buckroyd, Roxanthe Richardson (Make-up & Production Design Assistants), Emma Sharp, Dawn Stewart (Additional Make-Up)
Musical credits: Marcus Reeves (music & lyrics), Steve Richards (Music Producer)

Ruby Tuesday Rock Camp for Girls by Val Phoenix (2009)

A journalist specialising in women's alternative culture, Val Phoenix has lived in London since 1995. In recent years, she has expanded into multi-media, producing short films and web features.

Val currently has several projects in development, including a documentary on gentrification and a web series set in Berlin. A frequent visitor to the German capital, she finds the city's unique history and culture pose many questions, and many of her DIY films are set there, including the two on show tonight.

Ruby Tuesday Rock Camp for Girls is a short web documentary looking at preparations for the first ever German rock camp for girls. As organiser Jule Juergensohn explains the need for such a project, the visuals wander around a performance by the band Fundamental Attribution Error.

Film credits: Val Phoenix (Director), Juliane Juergensohn
Musical credits: Fundamental Attribution Error

War With Love by Val Phoenix (2009)

War With Love is set to a song by Hackney musician Louise Le May, but was shot in Berlin, the melancholia and drama of the song meshing with the stark, snowy visuals Val captured while living there last year. It says something about the conflicted relationship one has with a big city.

Film credits: Val Phoenix (Director)
Musical credits: Louise Le May

Marianna by Tian Glasgow (2008)

Marianna is a promo video produced and directed by Tian Glasgow as a part of New Slang Productions. The video was made for the band Shed Studio who were promoting the track. The promo was created in the style of classic Chris Isaak music videos such as You Owe Me Some Kind of Love, which the band names as one of their influences.

Film credits: Tian Glasgow (Director), Andrew Alderslade (DoP), Will Hodgson (Colourist), Claire Cloutman (Marianna)
Musical credits: Rob Castro, Dominik Gryzbon, Andrew (Gorgo) and Slawek C (Shed Studio)

Cave V Mclean by Nisha Duggal (2008)

"There is a sense of congestion in the drawings and videos I produce. The world seems overcrowded, people misunderstand each other, technology is omnipresent but often redundant. Individuals are examined and their mannerisms observed, repeated and dissected to the point of obsession.

Working within the tradition of portraiture I focus on my vernacular, on people and their interactions. Sampling dogma and imagery from contemporary culture my works engage the viewer through their complex manipulation of everyday situations.

I try to make the complicated simple." Nisha Duggal, June 2010.

Nisha completed her Masters in Fine Art at The Slade in 2009 where her degree show work Objective Drawing was bought by Charles Saatchi for his private collection. In 2008 her work Machine was short listed for the Jerwood Moving Image Awards. Nisha is currently based in London where she is undertaking a twelve-month studio residency at The Florence Trust.

Film credits: Nisha Duggal (Video artist, performer)
Musical credits: Nisha Duggal (voice)

Addiction by Glen Fulthorpe & Byron Chadwick (2010)

Hailing from the much-maligned town of Slough, Byron's penchant for witty wordplay and intricate intonation are sure to establish the 24 year old as one of the best in the UK to ever touch a microphone. After 5 successful years as part of Nine High - which produced 2 mixtapes, an album and an Australian tour - Byron is ready with his debut solo project Jack Of None (available on iTunes etc).

Addiction' is a cautionary tale of dangers of drugs, drug dealing and the the murky, underground world of making money at any cost.

Film credits: Glen Fulthorpe (Director), Pete Townsend (Editor), George Louca (Producer/ Cinematographer)
Musical credits: Byron Chadwick (lyrics), Christopher Crowhurst (music)

An Eyeful of Sound by Samantha Moore (2009)

"I don't know if you've ever heard a goat eating carrots? It's almost too much, it's so lovely"

Award winning animated documentary maker Samantha Moore has worked with; a group of people who have synaesthesia, along with leading researcher into synaesthesia and head of the UK Synaesthesia Research Group at the University of Sussex Dr Jamie Ward, Dutch anthropological-documentary producer Dr Joshka Wessels, and prix-Italia winning Canadian composer & sound designer Adam Goddard.

In this Wellcome Trust funded project, this short animated film explores synaesthesia from the inside out. The film uses both 2D and 3D digital animation (dependant on the synaesthetic response) and this ‘2½D’ mixed approach gives the films a layered, luminous and multi-dimensional feel. This is re-enforced by the soundtrack, which is a mixture of music, sound effects and interviews with synaesthetes and the neuro-psychologist. The soundtrack helps to embed the audience into a world where sounds can be tangible objects or amazing spectacles of colour and light.

Funded by a Wellcome Trust Arts Award.

Film credits: Samantha Moore (Director, 2D Animator), Joshka Wessels (Producer), Emily Mantell, Stuart Messinger (2D Animators), Omid Ghanat-Abady (Maya animation), Chris Chidlow (Production Assistant), Julie Roxburgh, Tessa Verrecchia, Emma Suddaby, Dr Jamie Ward (Intervewees)
Musical credits: Adam Goddard (sound design and original score), George Beasley (sound recording & engineering)

Such a Strange Face by Sam Rees & Tommy Tempa (2010)

Sam's process is a kind of investigation/search for new forms/sequences to marry/reproduce/collate into prints, comics, zines and animations. He has a passion for the faux-naive, outsider artists and child art which often results in his work containing a sense of humour, absurdity or just plain downright stupidity.

Tom is fond of dirty sounds and tape hiss. He enjoys the process of collecting small sounds and samples and reworking them together in an unrecognisable way to create new music. Tom also produces mainly instrumental music under his moniker Tommy Tempa. He also collaborates with two other musicians in a hip hop collective known as Mancini and The Creepers.

Film credits: Sam Rees (Director & Animator)
Musical credits: Tom Fisher, aka Tommy Tempa

All She Wanted Was Someone To Love by Nicola Field (2009)

This piece is part of Steam Control’s CastWords project - an evolving multimedia, multi-sensory form for web-sharing, educational/support settings; radio; theatrical presentation; gallery installation. It’s a collaborative fusion of new writing, soundscape and video. Writer/director Nicola Field says: “It always starts with the words for me. I write, come across an actor, a sound artist or an opportunity to produce something, and then it all comes miraculously together!”

Nicola’s book Over the Rainbow is published by Pluto Press. Her writing has appeared in anthologies and magazines, including Ambit, the Mechanics’ Institute Review, Up the Staircase and Heavy Bear. She has worked in independent media and community arts for over 20 years and after being diagnosed with CFS/ME in 2005, left her job as a journalist to focus on developing her writing and multimedia work.

Film credits: Nicola Field for Steam Control (Director - sound and images)
Musical credits: Phobik @ 15Hz Studios (sound), Neil Hancock (voice)

Kitty Scanner by Andrew Rowe (2008)

Andrew Rowe is a sound artist and musician who lives and works in London. He has worked with sound in a professional and creative context since 1996 and gained a degree in sonic art from Middlesex University in 2009. Since then he has displayed work in the Herbert gallery in Coventry, was selected for the Artsway Open 09 Exhibition and has had video pieces shown at independent film nights in London. His current video work is motivated by exploring incidental situations and conversations that occur during his personal and professional life.

The video piece 'kitty scanner' is an attempt to document treatment for an illness at Bart's hospital and was shot from the patient's point of view on low resolution mobile phone. The sounds of machinery and hospital equipment were recorded at the scene and then further edited and overdubbed with acoustic instrumentation.

Film credits: Andrew Rowe (Director)
Musical credits: Andrew Rowe, The Slate Pipe Bango Draggers

Taking Me Into The Future by Helen Nias & Cassandra Vervoort (2009)

Helen Nias creates moving image work using a variety of techniques including photo sequences, animation, super 8 film and old personal video footage. Her practice revolves around trying to find understanding in life by exploring ideas of our relationships to the past and the future, reality and dreams, the experience of these and the memories these experiences create.

Cassandra Vervoort is a photographer and fine artist currently working with smells and their emotional effect on memories. Taking inspiration from many contemporary performance and conceptual artists, she predominately bases her work on personal experiences and notions, using the curiosity these events create as the drive for producing work covering broader subjects.

This short melancholic film explores ideas and fears about the future, mortality, and immortality and the isolation this would bring. The music was chosen to reflect the mood of the narrated poem, just as the images were made to complement the words rather than to particularly illustrate them.

Film credits: Helen Nias (words and concept, Editor), Cassandra Vervoort (photographic concept, girl), Ellie Firrell (narrator)
Musical credits: Worriedaboutsatan - 'Morwenna'; Röyksopp - '40 Years Back/ Come'; Araya - 'The Mast'

Un Ange Passe by Fiona Geilinger & Michael Bishop (2009)

Un Ange Passe is a collaboration between film maker/dancer Fiona Geilinger and musician Michael Bishop. In contrast to their usual working practice, in this case the music was the starting point and Geilinger's film and performance a creative response to it.In that sense the piece has more in common with a music video. The lyrics tell of an angel who visits earth but is not appreciated by its inhabitants at the time, so never returns. The black and white video is performed and made by Fiona Geilinger. It combines her interest in the moving body and the drawn image by using directional marks on the body.

Film credits: Fiona Geilinger (images)
Musical credits: Michael Bishop (music), Caroline Demourgues, Gwen Tregoat (vocals)

Cello by Paul Gittins & Matthew Ratcliffe (2008)

The film was made using a cellular screen; this optical device divides light through hundreds of handmade paper pixels. A surveillance camera filmed the cello player. The image was then routed through a video projector, focussed onto the back of the screen. This enables the cello player to compose a visual construction while he plays his music.

Matthew Ratcliffe has played an integral part in the development of live performances with The Electric Shadow House, these productions utilise a number of paper screens, which create a real time animation using shadow dancers and musicians.

Film credits: Paul Gittins (Director & Producer)
Musical credits: Matthew Ratcliffe (cello player)

Jobcentre Catwalk by Tamsin Comrie & Tali Trow (2009)

A plucky graduate loses faith in the value of his degree because everyone else in the Jobcentre queue has one. Did I say everyone? Almost everyone. Expect mortar boards, confetti, intertitles, and one big brick wall.

Jobcentre Catwalk originated in an idea Tamsin had for a political cartoon - a Jobcentre queue stretching for miles, like in the old Tory poster, but with everyone in mortar boards and gowns except a single young man in jeans:
"Haven't you got a degree?", one gowned jobseeker would ask his plain-clothes neighbour. "No, but at least I'll stand out from the crowd".

It was a timely comment on the situation so many young graduates found themselves in - proud of achieving their degrees, but with their joy tempered by job shortages in a market flooded with equally fresh-faced, equally qualified, young jobseekers. The idea evolved into a short film, a tribute to the silent film era with intertitles, when Tamsin saw Nosferatu and Beckett's Film. In keeping with silent film tradition, the sound track was created entirely after the film was finished. Listen out for guitar and xylophone by Tali Trow, of London's own Ryan O'Reilly Band.

Film credits: Tamsin Comrie (Director), Kieran Sims, Simon Radford, Ben Maler (graduates), Sophie Bicknell (girl)
Musical credits: Tali Trow

La Maison Oubliée by Beatrice Baumgartner (2009)

Beatrice Baumgartner graduated a year ago from the University of Brighton, where she studied a BA in Materials Practice. She created sculptures out of wood, plastic and found materials, which she would then use to make stop frame animations. She is now living in London, making sets and sculptures for new animations.

La Maison Oubliée (The Forgotten House) is an animation made within a sculpture, which presents the viewer with a world both wonderful and strange. In the absence of humans, unearthly phenomenon starts occurring in the house. As the film progresses nature blossoms and blooms, then swiftly decays and transforms into something else. The soundtrack shifts from jewelery-box music to discordant and industrial clangs. Sam Bardsley helped Beatrice put the music together, using the recordings of jewelery-boxes mixed with fragments of the music from the band "The Valleys".

Film credits: Beatrice Baumgartner (Director, Animator)
Musical credits: Sam Bardsley (music)