Category Archives: Films

Eye Cut, 2021

16mm col, 20min, 2021:  14 October 2021 

The film’s protagonist is a masked woman in a nude bodysuit, who wears a cardboard box that doubles as a theatre stage. The woman takes us on a surrealist journey in which she performs to an invisible applauding audience. Having passed through red curtains writhing on her back, she arrives on stage bearing a cake on her front. Hand-held cardboard puppets, that she makes from magazine cut-outs of faceless men, go on to take part in an ominous party scene around the cake, candle-lit and spinning. The audience see the woman in disguise, her eyes peeping through cut out eye holes of a man’s cardboard face, as if taking his place. She changes her mask and its gender throughout, sometimes wearing two. Flipping the card puppet-figures, she reveals on the backside, half formed sentences. These morse code- like hand-arm movements struggle to communicate something of the underside of the puppets’ pleasure.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Performer:
Laura Matilde Mannino
Camera+edit:
Sarah Pucill
Sound Consultant:
Mairead McClean
Rushes Grade:
Fraser Watson
Sound Mix+On-line Edit:
Konrad Welz
Directed+Produced:
Sarah Pucill

[/tab]
[tab name=”texts”]

[/tab]
[tab name=”Screenings”]

London Film Festival Premiere: 14 October 2021
Jeu de Paume, Paris, November 2021  In  Vivienne Dick Retrospective
[/tab]
[tab name=”Photos”]

[/tab]
[end_tabset]

Confessions to the Mirror, 2016

Confessions To The Mirror, 16mm, colour, 68min,
Premiere London Film Festival 9 October 2016
Funded by the Arts Council of England, Financial Assistance University of Westminster, LUX Distribution.

Amidst a visual extravaganza of costumes and hand-made sets, Sarah Pucill’s new film Confessions To The Mirror takes its title, from the French Surrealist artist, Claude Cahun’s (1894-1954) incomplete memoir (Confidences au miroir, 1945-1954).  Following Cahun’s text, the film includes Cahun’s early and later life and work including her political propaganda activity and imprisonment in Jersey with her partner Suzanne Malherbe during the Nazi occupation of the island. The tracing of a life is made conscious through the projection of images of the couples home in Jersey into a domestic London setting.

As a sequel to Pucill’s previous film, Magic Mirror (16mm, b/w, 75min, 2013), Confessions To The Mirror (16m, col, 68min) continues Pucill’s experiment to bring cinematic life to the photographic and written archive of Claude Cahun.  In her new film Pucill animates re-stagings of Cahun’s black and white self-portrait and still–life photographs with voices from Cahun’s  text Confidences au miror, thus collaging and transposing Cahun’s black and white stills and words, into colour and soundscape.

Texts on Magic Mirror (2013)

[tab name=”Credits”]

Direction, Camera and Edit:
Sarah Pucill
Editing Consultant and Sound Design:
Mairead McClean
Lighting & Second Camera:
Fiona Teo Rui Wen, Joel Honeywell, Rina Yang
Key Performers:
Karen Leroy-Harris, Kate Hart
Sound Mix & Online Edit:
Konrad Welz
Image Correction:
Fraser Watson
Costume:
Jessica Cheetham
Make-Up:
Jessica Cheetham, Katie Campbell
Voice:
Caroline Saint-Pe, Louise Larchbourne, Lucy Briggs-Owen

[/tab]
[tab name=”Text”]
Francesca Rusalen + Francesco Cazzin, No Fest Experimental Film Festival Text 2017

“Feminisms, Mirrors: Claude Cahun and Sarah Pucill – a dialogue”, by Dr M Sprio, MIRAJ Magazine, Issue 4, 2+1, Spring  2016. Text 1 | Text 2 | Text

BFI FIlm Festival Salon Interview Sarah Pucill on Confessions To The Mirror with Ruth Maclennan on Hero City October 2016.

Roundtable Discussion: The Women of the London Filmmaker’s Co-op, Moving Image Review and Art Journal, Volume 4, No 1 + 2, 2015: 3P1-Roundtable-MIRAJ | P2-Roundtable-MIRAJ | P3-Roundtable-MIRAJ | P4-RoundtableMIRAJ | P5-RoundtableMIRAJ | P6-RoundtableMIraj | P7-RoundtableMIRAJ

“A Dialogue with Claude Cahun: Between Writing, Photography and Film in Magic Mirror and Confessions to the Mirror” Chapter by Sarah Pucill  in forthcoming book Cinematic Intermedialities, published by Edinburgh University Press, Ed Marion Schmid and Kim Knowles.  February 2021.   (Film Still on Cover).

“Coming to Life and Intermediality in the tableaux vivants in  Magic Mirror  and Confessions To The Mirror “ by Sarah Pucill.  In Experimental Film and Artists’ Moving Image Series: Experimental and Expanded Animation, Editors, Nicky Hamlyn, Vicky Smith, Palgrave Macmillan, September 2018.

“Mirror Tricks: Magic Objects”, Maxa Zoller, Leaflet with LUX Blu Ray Publication, 2021.

“Doubling Images: Troubling Objects”, Laura Guy, Leaflet with LUX Blu Ray Publication, 2021.

[/tab]
[tab name=”Publicity”]

September 2021.   ‘Into the Mothlight’  Podcast

“Into the Mothlight” Podcast. Interview with and produced by Jason Moyes.

on my 16mm films over 3 decades, in light of the the recent publication of the LUX Blu Ray of Confessions to the Mirror.       52mins. Published September 2021

 

Televised documentary in France (ARTE) and Germany (ZDF) “Masquerade and Games – The Female Artists of Surrealism”, Dir Maria Tappeiner.    Televised date: France and Germany 16 February 2020.  By the German public broadcaster ZDF in cooperation with the French/German public broadcaster ARTE.  Directed by Maria Tappeiner.

Extracts from Magic Mirror and Confessions to the Mirror  appear alongside an interview with me in my studio.    The focus is on my work with Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore in Magic Mirror  and Confessions to the Mirror.   Documentary includes  Lee Miller, Leonor Fini, Leonora Carrington,  and Meret Oppenheim.

 

 

Clips from Magic Mirror and Confessions to the Mirror will be shown in the play The Invisible Adventure (2020), (Cahun’s  text (1930) , written and directed by Marcus Lindeen.  The play is based on three living people whose life or work; a brain scientist, an artist and a patient, draws upon contemporary debates around identity.   “The Artist” in the play is based on interviews with Sarah Pucill ,  “The Scientist”, with the brain scientist Jill Bolte Taylor,  and “The Patient”, with Jérōme Hamon.

After Paris (10-14 October) the production will play at:

Comedie de Caen, Normandie : 3-6 November 2020.

Theatre de Gennevilliers, Paris: 10-14 October  2020, then at Comedie de Caen, Normandie : 3-6 November 2020.

[/tab]
[tab name=”Screenings/Exhibition”]
London Film Festival, Official Selection October 2016
Close Up Cinema, Q+A Laura Guy, London, February 2017
Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival, Official Selection, March 2017
Creteil International Women’s Film Festival, Paris, Official Selection, March 2017
National Portrait Gallery, London, Q+A Sadie Lee, March 2017
Cinematek Oslo, ‘The Dream That Kicks’, Q+A Greg Pope, 11 June 2017
White Cube,  Bermondsey as part of the exhibition ‘Dreamer’s Awake’, 6 August 2017

Photofilm: Sampling the Archive, organised by Katja Pratschke and Thomas Tode[
GUGA (Center of Architecture, a venue that is in opposition to the hungarian government), in co-operation with the Metropolitcan University, Budapest, Hungary.  Part of:  Verzio, Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, Budapest, Hungary.

BEEF Bristol Experimental and Expanded Film, Brunswick Club, Q+A VIcky Smith, Bristol ,20 Feb 2018.

Bagdam Lesbian Cultural Festival, Toulouse, France.

UCL Art MuseumBloomsbury Studio,  Presented with Maria Walsh, London,  22 May 2018.

International Women’s Film Festival Dortmund, Official Selection, 12 April 2019.

 

Ottawa Municipal Art Gallery, “Facing Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore”, Installation with props and costumes from the film and 10 minute clip, curated by Michelle Gewurtz, 7 September 2019 – 10 February 2020

Clips from Magic Mirror and Confessions to the Mirror will be shown in the play The Invisible Adventure (2020), (Cahun’s  text (1930) , written and directed by Marcus Lindeen.

The play is based on three living people whose life or work; a neuro-scientist, an artist and a patient, draws upon contemporary debates around identity.   “The Artist” in the play is based on interviews with Sarah Pucill ,  “The Scientist”, with the brain scientist Jill Bolte Taylor,  and “The Patient”, with Jérōme Hamon.

After Paris (10-14 October) the production will play at:

Comedie de Caen, Normandie : 3-6 November 2020.

75 Years Commemoration of the Liberation of Jersey, Jersey Heritage Trust, Screening and Presentation planned 16 May 2020.   Event was cancelled due to Covid19.

Ottawa Art Gallery Screening Presented by Curator Michelle Gewurtz Q+A with filmmaker present, 28 November 2019.

Cobra Museum of Modern Art, Amstelveen, Holland.  Staged as an exhibition in “Under The Skin” curated by Julia Steenhuiseen. 15 October 2020 – 17 January 2021.

LUX LAUNCH OF BLU RAY DVD.  Screening + Talk with Sarah Pucill, Laura Guy and Maxa Zoller.  19 April 2021.

Mal Seh’n Kino, Frankfurt , Screening organised by Korolla Gramman in relation to the Women Surrealist exhibition at Schirnhalle planned 19 April 2020, is postponed until May 2021.

[/tab]
[tab name=”Photographs”]

View Photographs
[/tab]

[end_tabset]

Magic Mirror, 2013

2013, 16mm b/w, sound, 75min

Magic Mirror combines a re-staging of the French Surrealist artist Claude Cahun’s black and white photographs with selected extracts from her book Aveux non avenus (1930, Confessions Denied). In Surrealist kaleidoscopic fashion the film creates a weave between image and word, exploring the links between Cahun’s photographs and writing as well as between those of the films of Sarah Pucill, as both artists share similar iconography and concerns.

Cahun’s multi-subjectivity as expressed in both her book and photographs, set the scene for the film, where she dresses and makes her face up in so many different ways, swapping identities between gender, age and the inanimate. Three women masquerade as Cahun’s characters: often it is hard to tell them apart. The splitting of identity appears as a double which persists throughout; as a literal double (through super-imposition), as shadow, imprints in sand, reflections in water, mirror or distorting glass. Likewise the voice is split between differently dressed voices, which sometimes speak at the same time and sometimes in dialogue. Part essay, part film poem, Magic Mirror translates the startling force of Cahun’s poetic language into a choreographed series of Vivantes Tableaux, intermixed with stagings from her writing.

Selected text from Aveux Non Avenus (Confessions Denied), Claude Cahun, 1928. Translated by Rachel Gomme


[tab name=”Credits”]

Direction, Camera and Edit:
Sarah Pucill
Funding Support:
Arts Council of England
Lighting, Second Camera:
Rina Yang
Main Performers:
Andro Andrex, Rowina Lennon, Kate Hart
Sound Mix and Dub:
Konrad Welz
Sound and Edit Assistance:
Fernando Callega Lopez
Music:
Jon Opstad
Hair and Make-up:
Amanda Rudkin
Costume and Props:
Lucy Vann, Jessica Cheetham,
Main Voice-over:
Helen McGregor, Rowena Lennon, Clarissa Regan, Marcia Farquhar
Edit, Direction Assistance:
Mairead MacClean

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]
2013   22 April, Premier Screening, Tate Modern, 6.30pm

2013   21 July, Glasgow Film Theatre, 8.20pm

2013   11 August, Norsk Film Institute ‘The Dream That Kicks’ August

2013   7 November, Screening with Q+A Institute of Contemporary Art, London, 6.45pm

2013  13 November, Screening  Cork Film Festival, 11.30am

2013   19 November, Union Theatre, Milwaukee, USA

2013  21 November, Aberystwyth Arts Centre, 6pm

2013   7+8 December, Institute of Contemporary Art, London

2014  15 January, Paula Mendersohn Becher Musuem, Bremen, Germany, curated by Christine Ruffert

2014 16 January, London Art Fair Panel screening and discussion on The Muse with Anthony Penrose (Lee Miller’s son) and Sue Steward

2014  3 February, Dance Pavillion, Bournemouth, curated by Selina Robertson

2014   28 February, Edinburgh Filmhouse,

2014 8 April, Freedman Gallery, Albright College, Reading, PA, USA, curated by Erin Riley-Lopez ‘International Film Series’

2014   9 April, Cinemarges Film Festival, Bordeaux

2014   26 April, La Cinemateque de Toulouse

2014   31 August, Seoul International New Media Film Festival, International Competition

2014  9 November, Pink Screen Film Festival, Brussels

2014  3 December, LUX DVD Launch of Magic Mirror,
JW3, 341-351 Finchley Road, London NW3 6ET

2014  10 December, Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-Arts, Paris

2015   April, Alchemy Film Festival, Hawick, Scotland.

2015  17 April- 14 June  ‘Magic Mirror: Claude Cahun and Sarah Pucill, The Nunnery Gallery, London

2015   July,  St Brelades Church, Jersey, organised by Jersey Heritage and LGBQT LIBERATE community in Jersey

2015   6 October, Screening,  Ecoles des beaux arts de Nantes curated by Marion Chaine

2015   16 October, Birkbeck University, Screening organised by Birkbeck Institute For The Moving Image Seminar Series convened by Muriel Temple

2015   8 October-5 December, staged exhibition of Magic Mirror in ‘Radical Gestures: Uncanny Feminism”, curated by Bae Myung Ji, Coreana Museum of Art, Seoul, Korea

2016   30 September, Screening of Magic Mirror and presentation,
Cambridge University, Corpus Christi College, Public Seminar:
Film and the Other Arts, Intermediality, Medium Specificity, Creativity, International Research Network.

2017  28 February, Close Up Cinema, London, Cahun Diptych Screening, 6.30pm Magic Mirror, Q+A with Laura Guy.

2017  6 August White Cube, Auditorium, Bermondsey as part of the exhibition ‘Dreamer’s Awake’.

2017  18 November Photofilm: Sampling the Archive,
GUGA (Center of Architecture, a venue that is in opposition to the hungarian government), in co-operation with the Metropolitcan University, Budapest, Hungary.

IQMF Festival Screening and Discussion with Sudeep Dasgupta + Aynouk Tan, 13 December 2020.

2021 The Museum of Photography, Berlin.  Part of Sampling the Archive Photofilm Event.

[/tab]
[tab name=”Texts”]
2021 Mirror Tricks: Magic Objects” by Maxa Zoller, Leaflet with LUX Blu Ray Publication, 2021.

2021 Doubling Images: Troubling Objects” by Laura Guy, Leaflet with LUX Blu Ray Publication, 2021.

2018 “Coming To Life” and Intermediality in the films Confessions to the Mirror (2016) and Magic Mirror(2013) by Sarah Pucill In Experimental Film and Expanded Animation: New Perspectives and Practices.  Ed V Smith,  N Hamlyn, 2018.  Winner 2018-19 Norman McLaren/Evelyn Lambart Award for Best Scholarly Book in Animation.

 

2016 “Feminisms, Mirrors: Claude Cahun and Sarah Pucill – a dialogue” by Dr M Sprio, MIRAJ Magazine, Issue 4, 2+1, Spring 2016

2015 June, Art Monthly Magazine, Review of Magic Mirror at The Nunnery Gallery, London, by Mark Harris – Art Monthly June 2015 Page 1 | Art Monthly June 2015 Page 2

2015 April, Magic Mirror Exhibition booklet (Published by the Nunnery Gallery) texts by Liena Vayzman, Sarah Pucill, Louise Downie.

2015 May, Sight and Sound Magazine, Review of ‘Magic Mirror- Claude Cahun and Sarah Pucill’ at The Nunnery Gallery, London, by Frances Morgan

2015 May, Time Out Magazine, Review of ‘Magic Mirror- Claude Cahun and Sarah Pucill’ at the Nunnery Gallery, London

2014 “Between Mirrors”, Helena Reckitt, Lux DVD

2014 “Stepping Aside to Enter”, Sarah Ibrahim, Lux DVD

2014 September 30, Photomonitor Magazine, Interview with Anna McNay

2014 July DIVA Magazine, feature by Anna McNay

2013 Mnemoscape Interview with A Ferrini and E Adami on Magic Mirror Part 2

2013 Mnemoscape Interview with A Ferrini and E Adami on Magic Mirror Part 1

2012Vertigo Magazine Issue 31 Winter In Conversation – At Least I Will Know My Face
[/tab]
[tab name=”Publicity”]

September 2021     Into the Mothlight podcast

“Into the Mothlight” Podcast interview with and produced by Jason Moyes on my 16mm films over 3 decades, in light of the the recent publication of the LUX Blu Ray of Confessions to the Mirror.          Published  September 2021

 

February 2020   Televised documentary in France (ARTE) and Germany (ZDF) “Masquerade and Games – The Female Artists of Surrealism”, Dir Maria Tappeiner.    Televised date: France and Germany 16 February 2020.  By the German public broadcaster ZDF in cooperation with the French/German public broadcaster ARTE.  Directed by Maria Tappeiner.

Extracts from Magic Mirror and Confessions to the Mirror  appear alongside an interview with me in my studio.    The focus is on my work with Claude Cahun and Marcel Moore in Magic Mirror  and Confessions to the Mirror.   Documentary includes  Lee Miller, Leonor Fini, Leonora Carrington,  and Meret Oppenheim.

April 2013 Resonance FM Half Hour Radio Interview with Diana Mavrolean, ‘I’m ready for my Close-up’, on Magic Mirror

July 29,  2013  The Skinny, Review by Helen Wright

August 2013  TenMag, Spannish Fashion and Culture Magazine, Ana Himes
October 2016  BFI Southbank London Film Festival Salon, Interview with Helen de Witt and Ruth Maclennan, speaking about the films Magic Mirror and Confessions To The Mirror

 

 

 

[/tab]
[tab name=”Photographs”]

View Photographs

[/tab]

[end_tabset]

Phantom Rhapsody, 2010

2010, 16mm, b/w, 19min

Distinctive in its stark use of black and white and reminiscent of early silent cinema, this film is composed of a series of theatrical side-show ‘magic’ acts. Three women stage tricks of appearance and disappearance, punctuated by trumpet, cello and drums.Interchanging between the roles of magician, nude and filmmaker, they perform the preparation of an image and the prepared or completed image, drawing on iconic paintings. 16mm camera techniques as well as performance techniques with props – such as cloaks, drapery, curtains, wigs, mirrors, frames, wands and lighting – determine what is visible or absent in the film frame.With its surrealist sensibilities of artifice and reality and insistence on doubling and substitution, Phantom Rhapsody probes the notion of identity as surface that can be worn or shed and which can extend beyond the boundary of the skin, into the light in the room, the set and the props.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Direction:
Sarah Pucill
Funded:
Arts Council of England
Camera and Lighting:
Lucy Pratt, Vicky Smith
Camera, Text and Edit:
Sarah Pucill
Performance:
Cecile Chich, Kayla Ente, Lucy Pratt, Sarah Pucill
Sound Design:
Tudor Petre Music
Music Composition:
Lennert Busch
Trumpet:
Howard Jacques Peryer
Cello:
Alice Biddulph

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

[/tab]
[tab name=”Texts”]

[/tab]
[tab name=”Photographs”]

View Photographs

[/tab]

[end_tabset]

Fall In Frame, 2009

2009, 16mm, col, 18min

Fall in Frame opens with the image of a young woman looking at herself and her camera in the mirror, each revealed as she unwraps a sheet to uncover the lens. She sets up the filming space by staging both set and camera and manipulates the light by handling the blind, each action weighted with its sound.  Filming herself falling asleep and awakening, in and out of consciousness, the woman switches the camera on and off. Deliberation and indifference at once determine her actions as she sits at the table pouring tea, impassively combs strands of long hair or lounges on a bed. Meticulously constructing her own confinement, she repeatedly checks herself in mirror and camera, all the while moving in and out of frame. With an even paced performance the woman proceeds to stitch her apron to the tablecloth with her hair. As she stands, the crockery comes crashing down. Gathered together into her dress, the debris is then thrown out of the window. Outside, in the garden, objects and camera are piled onto the cloth that becomes a trail as it is attached to her dress. From suburban street to sea-shore, camera and trail follow her.  In Fall in Frame the materiality of the filmmaking process is explored within a constrained performance that blurs the split  between the physical and consciousness.  The film ends where it starts with the sheet around the camera, shutting out the image.

Fall in Frame is a single screen which can be looped for gallery staging to be shown on 16mm or DVD

[tab name=”Texts”]

[/tab]

[tab name=”Credits”]
Directed and Produced: Sarah Pucill
Funded: Arts Council of England
Camera, Text and Edit: Sarah Pucill
Performance: Lucy Pratt
Sound, Mix and Dub: Konrad Welz
[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

2009
Montreal Festival du Nouveau Cinema, Montreal (festival)
University of Bedfordshire, Luton (Symposium)
Echo Park Film Centre, Los Angeles (retrospective)
MassArt Film Society, Boston (retrospective)
Anthology Film Archives, New York (retrospective)
Air Gallery, New York (retrospective)
Pleasure Dome, Toronto (retrospective)
2010
The Freud Museum, London (retrospective)
2010
The Book Club, curated by Laura Kloss, programme text by Adriana Cerne, Shoreditch, London (retrospective)
2010
No.w.here, Bethnal Green London (retrospective)
2012
Imagem-Contato, San Paulo, Brazil
2010
The Freud Museum, London (retrospective)
2014
A Nos Amours, JW3, London, as part of a ‘Chantale Akerman study day’, Screening of Fall In Frame with a presentation discussing the connection with Akerman’s filmmaking. 
2017
City46, KomunalKino, Bremen, Germany

[/tab][end_tabset]

Blind Light, 2007

2007, 16mm, col, 22min

Blind Light is filmed in the artist’s London loft. The presence of camera, studio and artist/performer are registered through image and sound, the loss of the former filling out the presence of the latter. In this way the physicality of object, space and subject as well as their inferiority is fleshed out, mapping out a space that is at once material and psychical. Controlling the light she allows into the frame, the artist lifts the blinds or pulls them shut, applies or removes lens filters, opens wide the aperture or closes it. Each performance or action threatens the image as it shifts in and out of ‘proper’ exposure until it disappears completely. Focusing either on the window or the sky, the artist narrates her camera operation whilst also describing what she sees; intermixing receptive and projective vision. ‘I can’t look’, she says, ‘the clouds are coming in’, ‘there’s been no rain for weeks’, ‘the eye burns, swells, looses focus and disappears in a stream’. Between aperture, eyeball, sun and moon, source and projection swap place. The film journeys from the grounded reality of the here and now – audibly represented through footsteps, birds and traffic, to a psychical space expressed through voice and abstraction. Blind Light explores the fold between the materiality of film, the psyche and the body.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Directed and produced:
Sarah Pucill
Funded:
Arts and Humanities Research Council, Arts Council of England
Camera, text and Edit:
Sarah Pucill
Performance:
Sarah Pucill
Sound, mix and dub:
Konrad Welz
Editing assistance:
Sue Giovanni, Lucia King

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

2007
Millennium Film, New York (retrospective)
The Old Lumiere Cinema (University of Westminster), London
2008
The Star and Shadow, Newcastle (retrospective), UK
European Media Art Festival Osnabruck, Germany
Trauma and the Sublime conference Swansea University, Whales
Louise T Blouin Gallery, London
Aurora Media Art Festival, Norwich, UK
Sway Gallery Open Show, Sway, New Forest, UK
2009
LightCone, Paris,
Anthology Film Archives, New York
2010
Film Without Film, Tate Modern, London curated by no-w-here and Maxa Zoller
Ruffled Galaxies – Infernoesque, exhibition, Berlin
LoBe Art, Berlin, curated by Olivia Reynolds.
2011
Moving Image South, Curzon Cinema, retrospective
2012

Milton Keynes Gallery, Screening
2017
‘The Artist Studio’ Programme of films, Vancouvre, Curated by Michele Smith
DIM Cinema, The Cinemateque, Vancouvre, Canada

 

 

[/tab]

[tab name=”Texts”]
Francesca Rusalen + Francesco Cazzin, text in “No Fest Experimental Film Festival”
[/tab]

[end_tabset]

Taking My Skin, 2006

2006, 16mm, b&w, sound, 35min

I’m not aware of you taking my skin’, says the artist’s mother to the camera as it zooms in on her eye as close as the lens will allow. Taking My Skin tracks a dialogue between the artist and her mother. Their exchange ranges from narrating the filming process ‘in the moment’ to relations in an earlier time – ‘how long do you think it takes for a child to become separate?’ Throughout the journey film spaces continuously dissolve and collapse only to separate again. Sometimes the artist is behind the camera, sometimes the mother, sometimes both simultaneously behind and in front, or neither. Both perform, film, and alternately instruct, position and direct the other. Formally and thematically, the film is an exploration of closeness, of synching, and the threat this poses to the self.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Directed and produced: Sarah Pucill
Funded        Arts & Humanities Research Council and Arts Council of England
Camera, performance:    Sarah Pucill, Jane Pucill
Camera, lighting supervision:  Megan Fraser
Sound technician:                     Megan Fraser
Editing & sound:                       Mairead MacClean

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

2006
Greenwich Picture House
Cork Film Festival
2007
The Millennium Film Workshop, New York (retrospective)
Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
Images Festival of Film & Video, Toronto – Marion McMahon Award
European Media Art Festival Osnabruck, Germany
Intervention, Fieldgate Gallery, London (staged exhibition)
Light Cone 25th Anniversary, Paris
2008
Mother Cuts: Experiments in Film, Video and Photography, New Jersey City University Galleries (staged exhibition)
Ann Arbor Film Festival
Multichannel, Artsway, UK (installed exhibition)
The Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle-upon-Tyne (retrospective)
2010
The Freud Museum, London
2010
The ‘Other’, Rencentre de Sophie, Nantes, France
2011
Moving Image South, Curzon Cinema, Wimbledon, London
Retrospective Screening curated by Laura Kloss
2012
Madrid Experimental Film Festival, Retrospective[/tab]

[tab name=”Awards”]

2007 Marion McMahon Award, Images Festival, Toronto, Canada
2007  Directors Citation, Black Maria Film Festival, New Jersey, US

[/tab]

[tab name=”Texts”]

2011
‘Those Deep Approaches’ by Cherry Smyth for the Lux DVD Booklet
2010
The Theatre of female point of view, Gloria Murano, La Furia Umana
2007
‘Mother Cuts’, exhibition catalogue, text and curation Siona Wilson, New Jersey University Gallery
2007
‘Film Frame to Skin Cell’ by Niamh McDonnell, Vertigo Magazine

[/tab]
[end_tabset]

Stages Of Mourning, 2004

2004, 16mm, col, sound, 17min

Ritualised through performance to camera, Stages of Mourning is Pucill’s journey of bereavement. In as much as this is a meditation on coming to terms with loss, the film is an exploration of how our relationship with the dead is made different through film. The artist orders image fragments of her late lover and collaborator, Sandra Lahire. By trying to physically immerse herself into photographs and film footage or by restaging these, Pucill forms a continuous stream of a life of two lovers. Through this doubling and layering, illusions accumulate as if these were a product of a machine that didn’t stop.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Directed and produced:
Sarah Pucill
Funded:
Arts and Humanities Research Council
Performers:
Sarah Pucill, Sandra Lahire
Camera, Edit & Sound:
Sarah Pucill
Camera Assistance:
Chloe Stewart, Tanya Syed

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

2004
Rencentres Internationales Paris/Berlin (touring)
Feminale, Cologne
Kassel Documentary Film Festival
College Art Association (CAA) Art History Conference, Atlanta
Masquarade curated by Kate Newton, Photofusion Gallery, London
2005
Experiments in Moving image’ curated by Jackie Hatfield & Steve Littman, the Old Lumiere
Cinema, London
London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival
Wake London Gallery West (with Peggy Atherton)
Take 291, curated by Charlie Phillips, 291 Gallery
2006
PULSAR Caracas Contemporary Art Museum, France and touring
Light Reading’ Series, NO.W.HERE Lab, London  curated by K MIrza + B Butler (retrospective)
Greenwich Picture House, London (retrospective)
2007
The Millennium Film Workshop (retrospective)
2008
Fairbanks Gallery, Oregon
The Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle-upon-Tyne (retrospective)
Chisenhale Dance Space and Queen Mary University Symposium on Mourning
Interrogating Trauma Conference, Perth, Australia
2009
The Experimental Film Club, Dublin curated by Donal Foreman.
2010
The ‘Other’, Rencentre de Sophie, Nantes, France.
2011
Moving Image South, Curzon Cinema (retrospective) curated Laura Kloss
2012
Open City Docs, ICA, Aesthetic Queeries, curated by Treasa O’Brien
Conference ‘Family Ties’, University of London, Presentation ‘Re-enactment as cathartic Ritual in Stages Of Mourning with a screening of the film.
Autobiography and the Archive at Whitechapel Gallery, screening of Stages Of Mourning with Q+A with Miranda Pennell, organised and chaired by Elisa Adami and Alessandra Ferrini (Mnemoscape).
 
2014
Whitechapel Gallery,  The Archive and Autobiography, curated by Alessandra Ferrini

[/tab]

[tab name=”Texts”]

2011
‘Sarah Pucill: A cinema of attraction’ by Sebastien Ronceray (or see scan of original French article)
2011
‘Those Deep Approaches’ by Cherry Smyth for the Lux DVD Booklet
2010
The Theatre of female point of view, Gloria Morano, La Furia Umana
2005
‘Accumulation in Stages of Mourning’, Lux-on-line, by Naomi Salaman
2006
‘Stop Frame Motion in Stages of Mourning’ Lux-on line by Vicky Smith
2006
The ‘autoethnographic’ in Chantal Akerman’s News From Home, and an Analysis of Almost Out and Stages of Mourning

[/tab]

[end_tabset]

Cast, 2000

2000, 16mm, b/w, sound 17min

Cast creates a claustrophobic and haunting space where people and things invade worlds in which they do not normally belong. Lifeless dolls are heaped inside drawers, dolled-up life size figures lie motionless on a windy beach at the water’s edge; a chair rocks in an empty room, a mirror reflects and observes, and a chest of drawers is caressed by the sea. The film has a dramatic sensibility that sets up a false promise of narrative. Its structure, instead, is akin to that of dreams where different scenic spaces collapse and the inanimate and animate interchange. Wide-angled perspectives, shifting points of view and juxtapositions of sound and silence force inner and outer realities to collide, creating an unsettling psychic world.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Directed and produced:
Sarah Pucill
Funded:
Arts Council of England
Camera:
Sarah Pucill, Noski De Ville
Art Direction:
Louisa Bare
Make Up:
Tae-ho Lee, Sarah Pucill
Performers:
Two women:Sandra Lahire, Sarah Weatherall.
Child: Marion Knight
 
Woman on beach: Ella Pratt, Lucy Pratt, Diane Knight
Second Camera:
Sandra Lahire
Editing, Sound Advisor:
Sandra Lahire

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

2000-01
Cinenova Festival, The LUX, London
London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival
Feminale, Cologne, Germany
Girlish– screenings part of Girl, New Walsall Art Gallery, UK
2002
291 Gallery (retrospective)
2005
Wake (With Peggy Atherton) London Gallery West
2006
Light ReadingSseries, NO.W.HERE, London, Curated K Mirza and B Butler
Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
2007
The Subjective Camera Series Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
2008
The Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle upon Tyne (retrospective)
2009
The Pleasure Dome, Toronto
2010
The Book Club, London, curated Laura Kloss (retrospective)
2011
BFI Southbank, Retrospective as part of LUX DVD launch of short films, February
BFI Southbank, Retrospective, curated Elinor Cleghorn as part of the Maya Deren Season, October.
2012
Madrid Experimental Film Festival, (retrospective)
Two Lives, curated by Club de Femmes, in ‘Scala Beyond’, Horse Hospital

[/tab]

[tab name=”Texts”]

2011
‘Sarah Pucill: A cinema of attraction’ by Sebastien Ronceray (or see scan of original French article)
2010
The Theatre of female point of view, Gloria Morano, La Furia Umana
1999
Little Deaths – by Sandra Lahire. Make magazine special issue on the Miniature

[/tab][end_tabset]

Swollen Stigma, 1998

1997, 16mm, col, sound, 20min

Swollen Stigma nourishes the fantasy of its protagonist’s inner life and proposes a lesbian imaginary which takes leap into risk and displacement. The film opens with an entranced seated woman working her fingers through a single strand of hair and proceeds to explore her lived imaginary in which desire and fear interlace. She re-visions different moments in time which are haunted by an absent lover. Like a playful fairy princess, this lover appears upside down in an armchair, hanging legs-down from the ceiling, playing dead on the floor, or eating roses; her body continuously permeates the woman’s reality. The film’s shifting points of view jump between the protagonist, fantasy spaces and her lover, making an internal world leak into what is external with the fluidity of blood into water.

[tab name=”Credits”]

Directed and produced:
Sarah Pucill
Funded:
Arts Council of England
Camera:
Sarah Pucill
Second camera:
Sandra Lahire
Edit, Sound:
Sarah Pucill, Sandra Lahire
Performers:
Sally Pucill, Rachael Gomme

[/tab]

[tab name=”Screenings”]

1997-98
London Lesbian and Gay Film Festival
Visibilia, lesbian film festival,  Bologna, Italy
Videolisboa- Video Art Festival, Lisbon, Portugal
Pandemonium Moving Image Art Festival, The Lux, London
Feminale, Cologne
Real Gallery, New York
Images Festival of Independent Film and Video, Toronto
Montreal Image and Nation International Queer Film and Video Festival
Impakt Film and Video Festival, Utrecht, Netherlands
2004
Experiments in Moving Image curated by Jackie Hatfield & Steve Littman
The Old Lumiere Cinema, London
2005
Wake, London Gallery West, staged exhibition
2006
Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
Light Reading Series, NOWHERE, curated by K Mirza and B Butler
2007
Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
2008
The Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle upon Tyne (retrospective)
2009
Mass Art Film Society, Boston (retrospectve)
Pleasure Dome, Toronto (retrospective)
Anthology Film Archives, New York (retrospective)
2010
Millennium Film, New York (retrospective)
Ecole Des Beaux Arts, Paris (retrospective)
2011
BFI Southbank (retrospective)
2014
Magic Lantern, Providence, Rhode Island, US
2015
Attaque le visible Projection No1, Screened with Phantom Rhapsody (2010) at La Mutinerie,  Paris, curated by Katja Gorska
Scottish Queer Film Festival, screening at the Glad Cafe, 17 November, Glasgow
2016
M-Tate Modern Screening ‘From Reel to Real: Women, Feminism and the London Film-makers Co-operative, 23-25 September

[/tab]

[tab name=”Texts”]

2010
The Theatre of female point of view, Gloria Morano, La Furia Umana
1998
The Fairies Banquet, Sandra Lahire, Coil, Issue 7
1998
Dragged, Cherry Smyth, New York, Real Gallery

[/tab][end_tabset]