Berwick Upon Tweed Film & Media Arts Festival
announces full programme for 2012!
Wednesday 19th – Sunday 23rd September
Pictures in Motion
Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival returns for its 8th annual celebration of the art of film – illuminating the whole town through premiere screenings, site-specific installations and specially commissioned projects – in a series of locations around Berwick-upon-Tweed.
Straddling the border between England and Scotland, Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival is a truly international event, showcasing filmmakers and artists from both sides of the border, and welcoming artists and filmmakers from as far as India and the USA.
Today the Festival is delighted to announce its most ambitious programme to date – entitled Pictures in Motion – which runs Wednesday 19th – Sunday 23rd September 2012. The full programme can now be found online at www.berwickfilm-artsfest.com, and tickets are on sale.
Each year the programme responds to a theme, and the 2012 programe explores the relationship between the moving and the still image, showcasing artists who work across film and photography. As always, the Festival will focus on where the boundaries blur, and on artists working at the fringes.
Using the historic town of Berwick-upon-Tweed as a set, the programme features a selection of new films and contemporary moving image art installations, each projected in, or on to, a range of unique venues and heritage locations around the town. The Festival once again opens up rarely accessed parts of Berwick’s Elizabethan heritage with, for example, installations in ice houses, buried deep in the town’s walls, and in the old prison cells in the tower of the Town Hall. Our partnership with Berwick Watchtower marks a new location on the Festival map while The Maltings Theatre & Cinema remains the Festival Hub, and will be the base for the feature film programme and evening receptions.
Over an action-packed 5 days, the Festival will present 1 newly commissioned live event, 2 artist talks and 2 filmmaker Q&As, 3 short film programmes, 4 workshops, 12 feature films, 17 installations and 1 outdoor projection in 5 different locations around the town, in addition to the Festival’s 10 venues. Over 50 artists and filmmakers are involved in the programme, and representing 17 countries in total.
Tickets are now on sale from www.berwickfilm-artsfest.com or from The Maltings Theatre & Cinema’s Box Office: +44 (0)1289 330999
Highlights for this year!
This year’s highlights include a 50th anniversary screening of Chris Marker’s La Jetée, a seminal photo-montage film taking audiences into the future as well as the UK premiere of artist Matt McCormick’s The Great Northwest, documenting his epic trip across Northwest America as he retraces the steps of the same journey taken by four women back in 1958. We are also proud to present newly commissioned works from artist Jason Dee and photographers Mishka Henner & David Oates, and a live road movie from Screen Bandita & The One Ensemble, who take us all over the world and back again.
Welcoming high profile guests to Berwick
We’re delighted to announce that Mark Cousins, the famous filmmaker, critic, and presenter – and the man behind the Channel 4’s The Story of Film - will be coming to Berwick! Mark will be flying directly from a film festival in Italy to introduce his latest documentary What is this Film Called Love? here in Berwick. Famous for interviewing the likes of Martin Scorsese and David Lynch, Mark himself will take questions from the audience about his new film.
We’re also delighted to welcome our international artists to the UK – award-winning photographer Amit Madheshiya will be coming to Berwick to tour his travelling cinema, a series of projections around the town entitled Talkies Wallah which capture the joy of cinema on the faces of audience members of tent cinemas back in Mumbai, India. And from Portland Oregon we welcome Matt McCormick, known for his debut feature Some Days are Better than Others, but coming to Berwick for the UK Premiere of The Great Northwest.
Looking closer to home, the North-East based Sundance-award-winning cinematographer Lol Crawley will be attending the Festival to introduce Here, a film which he shot in Armenia, and which screens in the UK, outside of London, for the first time.
Other artists visiting Berwick this year with newly commissioned work and who will be taking part in Artist Talks on Saturday 22nd and September and Sunday 23rd September include renowned photographer Edmund Clark, who, together with Anna Stevens from Panos Pictures, will be here to install their new work, Section 4 Part 20: One Day on a Saturday in the Town Hall Council Chamber; Jason Dee, whose ambitious new commission 24 Times will be installed in the Gymnasium; Mishka Henner and David Oates, whose new commission, Photographers, will be installed in Shoregate Ice Town House and will premiere at The Maltings Theatre & Cinema as part of the Opening Gala on 19th September.
See it in Berwick first: Announcing our UK Premieres!
Following the sell-out World Premiere of I Am Nasrine last year, the Opening Gala will once again be a reason to celebrate, as the Festival kick-starts with the World Premiere of Mishka Henner and David Oates’ short comic film, Photographers, which will be shown before the main feature: a preview of Chasing Ice, an environmental documentary following a project which seeks to chart the melting of the Earth’s glaciers through time-lapse photography and which deserves to be seen on the big screen, before being released into cinemas at the end of the year. Following that, audiences will be invited to a reception at Berwick Watchtower, the newly opened gallery by the River Tweed, to see a series of projections from Amit Madheshiya’s Talkies Wallah. Closing the Festival is the UK Premiere of The Great Northwest, a title that was picked up by Festival Director Melanie Iredale when it premiered at Rotterdam Film Festival and which hasn’t since screened in the UK – until now.
The installations; a promenade of moving image art projections and screenings in locations around the town, also features work that has never been seen in the UK before, each exploring the relationship between the still and the moving image, and by artists from across Europe and as far as South Korea. Meanwhile, closer to home, North East-based filmmaker Duane Hopkins will present three works from Sunday as a triptych for the first time, and as originally conceived. Hopkins’ producer Samm Haillay will also be present at the Festival, to introduce the regional premiere of Ruben Ostlund’s Play, and to represent Sunday in one of the two Artist Talks planned for the weekend.
Meanwhile, A Live Road Movie in Super8 and Sound marks a newly commissioned event and a World Premiere on our closing day, Sunday 23rd September. With super8 and slide projections from Edinburgh-based archivists Screen Bandita, and a score from Daniel Padden’s Glasgow quartet The One Ensemble, this live road movie promises the trip of a lifetime for a family audience.
Something for all the family
Once again, the Festival offers opportunities for everyone to get involved – from volunteering, through to taking part in a number of workshops. The Festival’s youth programme grows year on year, and for children, the 2012 programme offers a number of highlights, from the animated feature Tales of the Night by Michel Ocelot, through to the opportunity to create your own animation, and then to see it on the big screen! For young people, again there is the opportunity to create your own animation, as well as the chance to submit any films already made to the Chris Anderson Award. Here young filmmakers from across North East England, South East Scotland and here on the Border, will compete for a cash prize of £200, as part of an event that will also premiere the latest work from the Berwick Film Academy!
For family audiences a presentation of stop-motion animation Mary & Max on the Saturday, and the Live Road Movie on the Sunday is on the cards.
Designed to bring together people of all ages, from little ones through to the older generation is Films from the Attic, a free, afternoon-long drop in session that gives everyone the opportunity to play with vintage film technology. What’s more, for those who have their own super8 films gathering dust, and old slides in the attic, this is your chance to bring them along and get them screened!
Says Festival Director Melanie Iredale:
“We’re really happy to be announcing the 2012 programme, and believe it includes something for everyone to enjoy as much as we enjoyed putting it together. The line-up is certainly our most ambitious yet, and shows a real development in our own commissions as well as our curated programme. We look forward to welcoming a whole host of high profile artists, filmmakers and photographers to Berwick, and as always we’re so grateful to our funders, sponsors, partner venues – and to Berwick – for making the festival what it is. Between us we think we can make the 2012 edition the best one yet!”
Further information or to book tickets for the festival please go to www.berwickfilm-artsfest.com
Tickets also available from The Maltings Theatre & Cinema’s Box Office:
+44 (0)1289 330999
TD15 1AJ, UK.
Tickets are prices vary. Check out the website or contact The Maltings.
The Festival Pass, priced £30 / £25 concessions, offers entry to all films and events (excluding non-free workshops).
Entry to the Installations is free, with no need to book.
For further information, to arrange interviews and for more images, please contact:
Nicky Harrison, White Hot Communications
Tel: (0191) 280 8020 / 07824 390826
Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival
Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival is an international celebration of the art of film, set in the historic border town of Berwick-upon-Tweed. The inaugural Festival took place in September 2005, with a vision to transform Berwick into one big moving image installation – a visual and cultural spectacle – and the celebration has taken place every year since.
With seven editions under its belt, the Festival has established a reputation for being imaginatively and ambitiously curated - producing a screening programme, a promenade of installation works, a number of new commissions, and a lively selection of special events, artist talks and hands-on workshops across a number of venues. To date, it has showcased over 400 individual works from 35 different countries, including 40 UK and European premieres and 12 new commissions in up to 20 unique locations across Berwick-upon-Tweed – animating the whole town.
The Company fills a position in the UK festival calendar that is unique – in uniting of cinema with moving image art, while taking inspiration from other art forms in one holistic Festival. It is also distinctive in its setting, the far North of England, attracting audiences from both sides of the border, as well as forging trans-national partnerships.
Each year the programme draws together independent cinema with moving image art, engaging filmmakers and artists under a carefully selected theme – ranging from Crossing Borders in 2005 to Once Upon a Time in 2011. The Festival curates and commissions contemporary works that explore the chosen theme across a range of heritage locations around the town and along the Elizabethan walls, with Berwick’s unique architecture providing the screen for much of the programme.
Each event’s screenings, events and installations have attracted some 6,500 visitors from across the UK. According to our audience questionnaires, over 40% of respondents come from outside the area: of these, 30% are from outside of the region and 40% are visiting Berwick for the first time. Among visitors, 74% come specifically or primarily to attend the Festival. A recent economic impact study carried out by Newcastle University Business School suggested that the Festival generated £3.85 for every £1 in public funding.
Historically, the Company has produced alternating biennials and ‘mini-fests’. However, as part of it’s commitment to the Arts Council’s National Portfolio, the Festival will become a large-scale annual event over five days every September, starting with its most ambitious edition to date: Pictures in Motion 19th – 23rd September 2012.
For more info on the Festival, go to www.berwickfilm-artsfest.com
Berwick Film & Media Arts Festival 2012 wouldn't be possible without the support of the following organisations:
• Arts Council England
• Creative England
• Community Foundation
• First Light
• PRS for Music Foundation
• University of Sunderland
• Northern Rock Foundation
• Northumberland County Council
• General Mills
• Berwick Town Council
• Cooperative Community Fund
• Berwick Holiday Park
• East Coast
• Martins the Printers
• University of Derby
• English Heritage
• Berwick Civic Society
• Berwick Preservation Trust
• Berwick Visual Arts
• Berwick Watchtower
• Berwick YHA
• The Maltings Theatre & Cinema
• Berwick Youth Project
• Berwick Film Society
• North East Photography Network
• Screen Bandita
In association with:
• Little White Lies
• The Journal
• Shooting People