A collection of new films on the theme of ‘Private/Public’ was on show this Thursday, in an event run by DotDotDashDot to promote the work of emerging artists and filmmakers.
Taking place at Toynbee studios in east London, in the cosy Arts Bar & Café, the selection of shorts consisted of four submitted specifically for this evening, and Richard DeDomenici’s Fame Asylum, previously shown on Channel Four.
Two of the five filmmakers were in attendance, and had bought with them groups of curious friends: the first, Ikjung Cho, had the largest cohort. Her film On and After Suede – Part 1 used a narrative which follows a young girl’s relationship with her suede jacket, which she is not fond of yet finds hard to discard. She contemplates giving the jacket to a homeless person before eventually leaving it with her mother on holiday.
The second film, This is a Short Movie Because I Don’t Like To Wallow in Self Pity by Neil Ira Needleman, placed images of people in social situations against a discussion of depression.
Next up was Richard DeDomenici’s documentary about four asylum seekers, whom he trained and managed in a boy band, culminating in a performance on London’s South Bank. It provides a touching look into the lives of four men who fled their home countries – especially when DeDomenici realises that the band is much more than an art project to its members.
The penultimate piece – Rob Watkins’ Hargiesa – explored the province of Somaliland in the horn of Africa. Static camera shots ended with an insightful speech by a local man about political issues in the unrecognised sovereign state.
The final film, Tonje Alice Madsen’s InsideOut, was a patchwork of peoples’ most personal confessions on subjects such as sexuality and suicide – leaving the audience surprised on learning that all the footage was found on YouTube.
This is the fourth DotDotDashDot event, put on by the Artsadmin youth board. With small touches such as a bowl of secret instructions at the bar (mine told me to tap my foot in the interval) and a map on the back of the program for people to plot the movements of others, the Private/Public theme flowed quietly through the night with great success.