Culture Diary w/c 08-07-2019

David Bowie, The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976)

Our pick of this week’s arts, design, film and music events from around the North of England and the rest of the UK – and loads of it’s free!

Monday – Liverpool Arab Arts Festival – Chahine Film Season 6.15pm @ FACT Liverpool – £8

Last year, Egypt’s Misr International Films (MIF) launched a restoration project for the films of its founder, renowned Egyptian director Youssef Chahine, to mark the 10th anniversary of his death. Working at the forefront of Arabic cinema, UK viewers (thanks to LAAF) now have the opportunity to experience examples of his oeuvre for the first time, continuing tonight with An Egyptian Story. Blending fact and fiction, documentary and narrative, Chahine’s 1982 film places his alter ego Yehia in a bravura neorealist story. Catch the final screening of this run, Alexandria Again and Forever, on Wednesday.

Tuesday – Exhibition and book launch: Anthony Burgess and Modernism 6pm @ the International Anthony Burgess Foundation, Manchester – FREE

Best known for writing the dystopian A Clockwork Orange (famously adapted by Stanley Kubrick), Anthony Burgess’ work was heavily informed by modernism. From James Joyce, Ezra Pound, T.S. Eliot and Virginia Woolf to Stravinsky, Schoenberg, Hindemith and the films of Fritz Lang, his was a creative world saturated by judiciously well-chosen inspiration. This is reflected in a never-before-published proposal of his for a history of modernism entitled Modernism and Modern Man, which is included in this exhibition. The evening includes the launch of Burgess’ reissued biographies of D.H. Lawrence and James Joyce.


Palestine + 100 6.30pm @ the Bluecoat, Liverpool – £6/£3

Including stories from Man Booker longlisted Mazen Maarouf, debut novelist Saleem Haddad and acclaimed British/Palestinian author Selma Dabbagh, this Comma Press publication purports to be “the first ever collection of Science Fiction from Palestine”. The brief, which gives the anthology its title, was for writers to ask themselves what might their home city look like in 2048 – a century after Nakba, when more than 700,000 fled or were expelled from their homes. The launch includes readings, discussion and a Q&A with the book’s editor, Basma Ghalayini.

Wednesday – How Do You Launch an Indie Magazine? 6pm @ the Modernist, Manchester – £8/£6

Print is a subject dear to our hearts, so events such as this fill us with joy at the idea of budding editors, writers and designers out there just waiting to unleash their amazing new passion project onto the streets and into our lives. Moving beyond the blazing, unbridled enthusiasm stage though, you’ll want to get to grips with the thorny issues of finance, distribution and, y’know, getting paid. Hear from magazine makers on this and more – we have everything crossed for you. Read our interview with Stack Magazines’ Founder, Steven Watson, and learn about Stockport indie stockist, Rare Mags

House of Women, 2017 (production still), Michelle Williams Gamaker

Arts Council Collection after hours celebration 6.30pm @ Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool – FREE

Current Walker show As seen on screen is the last of their run of partnership exhibitions with the Arts Council Collection, and tonight’s event celebrates that relationship. With the exhibition open after hours and music, performance and more besides, the intention is to see the collaboration out with a bang. Highlights include artist Michelle Williams Gamaker in conversation with Root-ed zine, a curator tour of the exhibition, zine and printmaking. Read our review of As seen on screen

Thursday – Exhibition Opening: REAL WORK 6pm @ FACT Liverpool – FREE

“REAL PEOPLE. REAL STORIES. REAL WORK.” runs the subtitle of Real Work, a new show that presents “uncensored stories about work that goes unrecognised”. Making art in response to the slog of the everyday is hardly a new idea, but this latest exhibition at FACT comes at a time when the line separating work and life has been so obscured by technology and increased access (via emails, notifications, etc.) as to become bleakly comic. Liz Magic Laser’s In Real Life explores the experiences of freelancers, while Candice Breitz’s Sweat is the result of the artist’s collaboration with sex workers.


Friday – Exhibition Closing: Keith Vaughan: Myth, Mortality and the Male Figure @ Osborne Samuel Gallery, London – FREE

In 2011, there was a series on BBC4 titled The British Masters. In it, James Fox takes us through his pick of artists asserting Britain’s place in the modernist movement. Sickert, Hockney and Bacon are, of course, prominent, but he also brought to my attention the work of Graham Sutherland contemporary, Keith Vaughan. This new exhibition stakes a claim for Vaughan as “one of the greatest of all British post-war artists”. It’s not too hard to see – or for this grouping of paintings, drawings and gouaches to demonstrate – why.

Buffer Zones @ Paradise Works, Salford – FREE

A “physical commentary on the geo-political, social economic and cultural impacts of borders”, this new exhibition including the work of 13 contemporary artists looks promising indeed. The names are a mixture of the familiar – James Bridle, Larry Achiampong & David Blandy – and the less so (to us at least). We’re hoping for an interesting contrast of responses to the vexatious questions and occurrences that we are currently faced by – Brexit (obvs), social divisions, hostile environments and the separation of community and physical space among them.  Read: Introducing: Paradise Works



Saturday – Frances Disley: The Cucumber Fell in the Sand @ Humber Street Gallery, Hull

If the ongoing Brexit and Tory leadership shenanigans are getting you down, perhaps we have the show for you, or rather, Hull’s Humber Street Gallery does. Frances Disley’s new exhibition, devised in collaboration with artists Gregory Herbert, CBS Studios (Joseph Hulme, Liam Peacock & Theo Vass) and Foodsketz (Alison Claire & Cat Smith), celebrates, we’re told, “the goodness of people and nature”. “At last,” we exclaim! Drawing on an ongoing interest in the subject of self-care, Disley (a Biennial Associate Artist whose work has just entered the Arts Council Collection) explores our relationship with food through sculpture, painting, textiles and plant life.

Sunday – The Man Who Fell to Earth 6pm @ FACT Liverpool – £8

“I know all things begin and end in eternity…” A fitting quote from David Bowie’s best film, given extra poignance in light of the great man’s passing. Adapted from the excellent science fiction novel by Walter Tevis, and directed by Nicolas Roeg (whose work on the exceptional Don’t Look Now had gripped audiences three years before), this was Bowie’s first starring role; a tragic tale of an alien seeking help from another planet he doesn’t understand. More on Roeg and The Man Who Fell to Earth 

Mike Pinnington

Images, from top: The Man Who Fell to Earth (film still); Palestine + 100; House of Women, 2017 (production still), Michelle Williams Gamaker, Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre, London © Courtesy of the artist and Tintype, London; Keith Vaughan; Fran Disley

Posted on 08/07/2019 by thedoublenegative