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Screening | Crystal Gazing

Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen
Crystal Gazing

Saturday 7 October
2 – 3.30pm

For the final screening in the programme, Urgency and Possibility: Counter-Cinema in the 70s and 80s, Cooper Gallery presents the Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen’s rarely-seen film Crystal Gazing (1982).

Crystal Gazing follows four protagonists whose lives meet at intervals during recession London during the Thatcher era. A science fiction illustrator, a saxophonist who moves from busking to Top of the Pops, an analyist of satellite photography and Julian, a PHD student are the focus of a story which begins to unravel the complex threads linking all aspects of life to an ever more desperate economic situation.

'It's about the contrast between the 1960s and the 1980s. But that was one aspect of the original script which diminished tremendously, the project was very much taken over by events here and now. As we actually made the film the moment of making it became more and more important - we wanted to inscribe the present, Thatcherism, cuts, unemployment into it.'
Laura Mulvey in an interview with Frameworks, Issue 19, 1982.

All screenings in the programme are free and ticketed. Please register on Eventbrite.

Laura Mulvey & Peter Wollen, Crystal Gazing, 1982
Colour, 16mm transferred to digital
Courtesy BFI

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Urgency and Possibility: Counter-Cinema in the 70s and 80s, is a two-week screening programme of the collaborative film works by widely influential film theorists and filmmakers Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen. The programme, selected with Laura Mulvey, includes the artists’ experimental shorts, features and documentary, which instigated Counter-Cinema in the 1970s. These films are underpinned by the discourse of feminist theory, semiotics, psychoanalysis and leftist politics and an attempt to work against the formalist and ideological domination of Hollywood cinema.

See full programme screening times here.

Image credit: Laura Mulvey and Peter Wollen, Crystal Gazing (production still), 1982. Image courtesy the artists and BFI.