Gastromancy: curated screening programme with aemi at Project Arts Centre, Dublin

December 2018
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6pm, Project Arts Centre, 4 December 2018

Gastromancy is a curated screening programme staged as part of Process | Event, a project by aemi. As audiences we generally encounter a film or artwork after or at the point of its completion. Process | Event offers the rare opportunity to observe and engage with an artist's thought process as it occurs, before the final form of what they are producing has been determined. This programme comprises a series of collaborations between 'aemi' and four widely acclaimed Irish artists who work with the moving image: Dennis McNulty, Tadhg O’Sullivan, Jenny Brady and Sarah Browne.

These events will be uniquely structured to give insight into the role of the artist or filmmaker as researcher, with each artist invited to select and present a screening programme that informs or reflects on ideas they are in the process of developing in relation to a new moving image work. The artists adopt a variety of means to describe the relationship between the film works in the screening programme and their individual research processes, giving audiences the unique chance to respond to and participate in discussion led by the artists about their work.

Browne is currently developing a new film that speculates on feminist epigenetics, specifically looking to the history of the anti-vivisection movement, canine experiments, and the treatment of early suffragette campaigners in the UK. These campaigns feature striking images of muted, prone bodies (of dogs and women), being opened up or being force-fed. Browne’s new film probes at the political, vocal consequences of these generational stressors on the body.

Gastromancy [stomach magic] includes a series of scripted intertitles and extracts, and films such as Charlotte Prodger, Passing as a Great Grey Owl, 2017, UK, 6 minutes; A.M. Baggs, In My Language, 2006, U.S.A., 9 minutes; Her Master’s Voice, Nina Conti, 2012, UK, 64 minutes. Ventriloquist Nina Conti’s feature film forms the main focus of the programme. The film will be introduced through a series of short artist films and extracted broadcasts that explore the particularity of gendered speech and the magic of synchronised sound on film.

Featuring the voices of Nina, Amanda, Charlotte, Mairéad, and their proxies, Browne’s staging of Process | Event opens up the form of the film essay, exploring ventriloquism as both subject and method.