Screening on Barge Ideaal 21 Sept

From Seoul and Ulaanbaatur, Difference Screen came back to the UK for a screening on Barge Ideaal on Lots Ait, (Lot = share, or parcel of land; ait or eyot = middle English for river island), an island in the River Thames on the western fringes of London. To an island, then onto a barge, two steps removed from the shore, a calmness descends as you cross the footbridge and leave behind the frantic city, and set our audience of neighbours, friends and new visitors into a mindset of a different space.

Boats define their own set of rules, as vessels that contain and displace, that can only be entered from above the water line. They create an enclosure, that is also a temporary and transient place and the sense of potential of a journey is always there – even whilst the boat is moored to the shore. It befitted well the imagined and real journey presented in Atousa Bandeh’s moving and poetic film , The Day I Disappeared – which we featured. I’ve seen it 4 or 5 times and it moves me equally each time.

In contrast, the preceding 7 short films had a formality of motion and elemental landscape, with Dan Shipsides spinning Coir’ a’ Ghrunnda 360Pauliina Salminen’s traversing of the Brahmaputra River in 8 Crossings and Renata Poljak’s Skok / Jump.

Two of these films are originally from larger bodies of work. In  Russian KAMA3 Adad Hannah’s takes his inspiration the early 20th Century work of Sergeii Prokudin-Gorskii, the Russian pioneer of colour photography. Hadad traveled through Russia to record small slivers of Russian life in a series videos and photographs, creating a series of almost still tableaux vivants whose silent subjects speak volumes whilst they try to remain still.

Phil Dadson’s Echo Logo (Polar Projects) was part of a recent configuration of Polar Projects at the Auckland City Art Gallery, in context of the 2006 Walters Prize.  A dividing wall was constructed in the space and Echo Logo and Aerial Farm were shown back to back, and other works also exhibited adjacent to each other.

The combination of river island, barge, films, food, drink and good company proved a success that we want to repeat, and hope to bring Difference Screen back to Barge Ideaal again next year.

Ben Eastop








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