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.

Directed and produced:
Sarah Pucill
Arts Council of England
Sarah Pucill
Second camera:
Sandra Lahire
Edit, Sound:
Sarah Pucill, Sandra Lahire
Sally Pucill, Rachael Gomme
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
Experiments in Moving Image curated by Jackie Hatfield & Steve Littman
The Old Lumiere Cinema, London
Wake, London Gallery West, staged exhibition
Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
Light Reading Series, NOWHERE, curated by K Mirza and B Butler
Greenwich Picture House (retrospective)
The Star and Shadow Cinema, Newcastle upon Tyne (retrospective)
Mass Art Film Society, Boston (retrospectve)
Pleasure Dome, Toronto (retrospective)
Anthology Film Archives, New York (retrospective)
Millennium Film, New York (retrospective)
Ecole Des Beaux Arts, Paris (retrospective)
BFI Southbank (retrospective)
Magic Lantern, Providence, Rhode Island, US
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
M-Tate Modern Screening ‘From Reel to Real: Women, Feminism and the London Film-makers Co-operative, 23-25 September