This month Eelyn Lee will be spending three weeks at Metal, an artistic lab on the Thames Estuary. Metal have offered Eelyn a residency at their Chalkwell Hall base in Southend to continue her two-year exploration of collaborative filmmaking.
Following last year's 5-day lab at the Barbican which was supported by Arts Council England, Eelyn will be further developing ideas around notions of fear and monsters by exploring local stories associated with the river.
Eelyn will be talking to groups of people with connections to the estuary including the fishing community in Leigh-on-Sea; dock workers at Tilbury and residents on Canvey Island.
The research will inform a further two moving image works and will culminate in the making of a long form film in 2017.
The first iteration of the project, Monster made during the Barbican lab will premiere at the BAFTA Qualifying Aesthetica Short Film Festival [5th - 8th Nov 2015] in York. Taking inspiration from Shelley's Frankenstein, the film tells the story of monster created from other people's fear and features BAFTA / Palme d'Or winning actress Anamaria Marinca [4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days].
An Ealing Trilogy is now available to watch online. Following a three month exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery last summer, the film went on to be displayed at Pitzhanger Manor Gallery and was selected for Les Rencontres Internationales, a festival celebrating new cinema and contemporary art in Paris.
The 7-minute film was made by Eelyn Lee in collaboration with students from Brentside High School as part of last year's Creative Connections project at the National Portrait Gallery.
Left: Gareth Evans during the lab / Right: Filming during the lab
Last week writer, editor, producer, presenter and programmer, Gareth Evans visited the Monster Lab, an experimental 5-day process led by Eelyn Lee to find new ways of making improvised film. Tonight he will be hosting a conversation with Eelyn Lee and her team of collaborators about their experiences, ideas and reflections in the Barbican Cinema 2. Read his own thoughts on their adventures in to devised filmmaking in this poignant and beautifully written guest blog. Here's an extract:
'.... Eelyn Lee and her Pit Lab ensemble are into their fourth day when I drop by, stacking up the hours without weather like their constantly shifting cardboard set, in freighted ventilation, cabled glow, a black walled box for 18, but strangely self-sufficient and like some ‘lord of the flies’ outcrop, seeming to run by its own unspoken rules and rituals, everyone getting on with something, and those who seem least active at a given moment still holding microphones on high stems, waiting for voices but maybe conjuring them too, sonic priestesses, aural conductors of the subterranean air....
...It’s about strangers in town (think Clint, Kitano, Kasper Hauser; think Dogville and the dunes of Kobo Abe). It’s about upheaval in the estuary, about monsters and the triggers they drag in with them, like a net full of old explosives just waiting to go off. It’s about work and love, and conflict and then death; but mostly it’s about the fear that comes from meeting with the ‘other’, from the monsters that we make through instinct and such ignorance; and it takes place in the estuary that took us on its boats to Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, that gifted us the toothsome Count, that traffics migrants in, blind with terror in some sealed container. In short, it’s about now, and now again, and then again some more...'
Read the full article here
Anamaria Marinca in 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days by Cristian Mungiu
Delighted that Anamaria Marinca will be joining the ensemble cast of Monster, Eelyn Lee's five-day experimental filmmaking lab to be held at the Barbican next week. Anamaria played the lead in 4 Months, 3 Weeks, 2 Days, which received the prestigious Palme d'Or in Cannes in 2007. She also won a BAFTA for her role in Channel 4's Sex Traffic in 2004.
Other ensemble actors include Kingsley Ben-Adir, Debbie Korley, Nicola Bland and Hi Ching. Find out more about the cast on the project blog.
Monster is a new moving image work by Eelyn Lee. The work will be developed through the Open LAB scheme at Barbican/Guildhall and is supported by Arts Council England.
Pleased to announce that Eelyn Lee's new moving image project, 'Monster' has been selected by the Barbican to be developed during a 5-day lab in their Pit Theatre next month. Subsequently, the Arts Council England have offered their support in funding the project through their Grants for the Arts strand.
‘Monster’ is a five-day exploratory lab, exploring new ways of making moving image content through processes of devising and improvisation.
By interrogating notions of ‘demons and fear’ Eelyn will collaborate with a group of artists and performers to create a monster story set in a fictional place along the Thames estuary.
The results will be shared with an audience in the Barbican Cinema, hosted by film curator, Gareth Evans and be further developed next year in a real estuary setting where Eelyn aims to produce a long-form moving image work.
The lab will take place 1st - 5th December, 2014
Monster will be developed through the Open LAB scheme at Barbican/Guildhall
Image: Under Water Cow Feeding from video clip by Peter Roberts © Peter Roberts 2011