Sarah Pucill

Films 1990-2000 (2000) DVD NTSC, VHS NTSC, color, 70 min

Genre: Experimental

- You Be Mother (1990, 7 min., Shot on 16mm) &nbsp '.. reveals a face projected onto a cup, saucer, and teapot on a table top. The revelation is oblique and at various levels of visual ambiguity, recalling both the images of Bosch and the procedural theory of paranoiac critical perception broadcast by Dali.' Malcolm Cook, Variant Magazine - Milk and Glass (1993, 10 min., Shot on 16mm) &nbsp '... examining sexuality through the projection of a mouth onto a bowl of milk, the film shows a very lucid and painterly filmmaking approach.' Helen Sloan - Backcomb (1995, 6 min., Shot on 16mm) &nbsp 'The Surrealists were fascinated by the idea that beneath the surface of everyday life there exist disruptive and uncontrollable forces. In Backcomb, Pucill inflects these themes with a feminist sensibility. In her film, the feminine, is neither personified nor idealised but remains symbolic - we never see the face of the woman with the black hair, nor do we hear her speak, but we come to see her as an almost elemental force. She suggests there is no escaping restrictive social definitions without some kind of violence, symbolic or otherwise.' Chris Darke, London Production Fund - Mirrored Measure (1996, 10 min., Shot on 16mm) &nbsp 'A sense of balance and connectedness shifts between imbalance and failure to connect, from focus to blur, sound to silence. A mother/daughter relationship is suggested, the sucking of the early mother/child diad. Through structural manipulation, the film explores themes of introjection and projection of the fragile boundaries of selfhood.' Sarah Pucill - Cast (1997, 17 min., Shot on 16mm) &nbsp 'Moments of desire and suffocation, represented by a girl and her doll which then transforms into a live woman/mother are viscerally provoked. As with all of Pucill's work the timing and composition are flawless.' Cherry Smyth, Art Monthly - Swollen Stigma (1997, 20 min., Shot on 16mm) &nbsp '... enacts a devouring female gaze. Finally, the phantom comes to life by eating. This reverses the lockjaw that has gagged the lesbian body of language. The phantom's voice is enfleshed.' Sandra Lahire, Coil Magazine

Rental: $50.00
DVD NTSC Rental: $50.00
VHS NTSC Rental: $50.00

Sarah Pucill

Stages of Mourning (2004) DVD NTSC, color, 20 min

Genre: Experimental

I ritualize a lament through a performance to camera, the coming to terms with the loss of my partner, Sandra Lahire. A journey of mourning incorporates a staging both for myself and for the camera. The hallucinatory power of the phantom of memory is set alongside the nature of lens based material to carry ghosts. Textures of the skin and voice of the deceased are infused with the pixellation and grain of photograph, film and video. --S. P. shot on 16mm

Rental: $50.00
DVD NTSC Rental: $50.00

Sarah Pucill

Fall in Frame (2009) DVD NTSC, color, 18 mins min

Genre: Experimental

Keywords: Body

Fall in Frame opens with the image of a young woman looking at herself and her camera in the mirror, each revealed as she unwraps a sheet to uncover the lens. She sets up the filming space by staging both set and camera and manipulates the light by handling the blind, each action weighted with its sound. Filming herself falling asleep and awakening, in and out of consciousness, the woman switches the camera on and off. Deliberation and indifference at once determine her actions as she sits at the table pouring tea, impassively combs strands of long hair or lounges on a bed. Meticulously constructing her own confinement, she repeatedly checks herself in mirror and camera, all the while moving in and out of frame. With an even paced performance the woman proceeds to stitch her apron to the tablecloth with her hair. As she stands, the crockery comes crashing down. Gathered together into her dress, the debris is then thrown out of the window. Outside, in the garden, objects and camera are piled onto the cloth that becomes a trail as it is attached to her dress. From suburban street to sea-shore, camera and trail follow her. In Fall in Frame the materiality of the filmmaking process is explored within a constrained performance that blurs the split between the physical and consciousness. The film ends where it starts with the sheet around the camera, shutting out the image.

Sarah Pucill

Blind Light (2007) DVD NTSC, Color, 22 min

Genre: Experimental

Blind Light is filmed in the artist's London loft. The presence of camera, studio and artist/ performer are registered through image and sound, the loss of the former filling out the presence of the latter. In this way the physicality of object, space and subject as well as their interiority is fleshed out, mapping out a space that is at once material and psychical. Controlling the light she allows into the frame, the artist lifts the blinds or pulls them shut, applies or removes lens filters, opens wide the aperture or closes it. Each performance or action threatens the image as it shifts in and out of "proper" exposure until it disappears completely. Focusing either on the window or the sky, the artist narrates her camera operation whilst also describing what she sees; intermixing receptive and projective vision. "I can't look", she says "the clouds are coming in", "there's been no rain for weeks", "the eye burns, swells, looses focus and disappears in a stream". Between aperture, eyeball, sun and moon, source and projection swap place. The film journeys from the grounded reality of the here and now - audibly represented through footsteps, birds and traffic, to a psychical space expressed through voice and abstraction. Blind Light explores the fold between the materiality of film, the psyche and the body.

Sarah Pucill

Phantom Rhapsody (2010) DVD PAL, b & w, 19 min

Genre: Experimental

Keywords: body, films about film

Distinctive in its stark use of black and white and reminiscent of early silent cinema, this film is composed of a series of theatrical side-show 'magic' acts. Three women stage tricks of appearance and disappearance, punctuated by trumpet, cello and drums. Interchanging between the roles of magician, nude and filmmaker, they perform the preparation of an image and the prepared or completed image, drawing on iconic paintings. 16mm camera techniques as well as performance techniques with props- such as cloaks, drapery, curtains, wigs, mirrors, frames, wands and lighting - determine what is visible or absent in the film frame. With its surrealist sensibilities of artifice and reality and insistence on doubling and substitution, Phantom Rhapsody probes the notion of identity as surface that can be worn or shed and which can extend beyond the boundary of the skin, into the light in the room, the set and the props.

Rental: $45.00
DVD NTSC Rental: $45.00

Sarah Pucill

Early Shorts (1990-1996) DVD PAL, color / b&w, 33 min

Genre: Animation, Experimental

Keywords: body

YOU BE MOTHER (1990) 16mm col, sound, 7 min- You Be Mother uses stop-frame animation to disrupt the traditional orders of animate and inanimate, the fluid and the solid. An hallucinatory space is set up when a frozen image of the artist's face is projected onto weighty pieces of crockery atop a table. Ears, eyes, nose and mouth, all become spatially dislocated as a determined hand begins to reposition, decant and mix. Events unfold to the amplified sounds of grinding, pouring and stirring. MILK AND GLOSS (1993) 16mm col, sound, 10 min- An interior landscape is scrutinized, and an apparent rational calm is revealed as suffocating. Milk and Glass is an evocation journey from surface to interior- a black-coated mirror, the hollow of a bowl, a cavernous throat a brush demarcates a line of lip on a flat surface, a mouth doubles up with the bowl and is virtually spoon-fed till it chokes. BACKCOMB (1995) 16mm col, sound, 6 min- In Backcomb the demonic is unleashed on domestic space. It takes the form of two of femininity's mildest tokens, hair and embroidery, that serve here in the creation of sexualised surrealist experience. Within the claustrophobic space of a table-lay, a forceful and erectile mass of hair comes alive and slithers across its surface. The hair probes into vessels and punches through the cloth finally order overturns and all smashes to the ground. MIRRORED MEASURE (1996) 16mm, b&w, sound, 10 min- Mirrored Measure features two women separated by a generation. The older woman ceremoniously lays a table - she repeatedly spreads a cloth and smooths it out. The table is set and glasses and jug filled with water. A balanced and controlled ritual follows in which the jug is passed round and water is repeatedly sipped. Water becomes the lens through which we see and the medium through which the protagonists connect. The sense of connectivity is abruptly severed when the first glass tumbles.

Rental: $45.00
DVD PAL Rental: $45.00

Sarah Pucill

Swollen Stigma / Cast (1998- 2000) DVD NTSC, color / b&w, 37 min

Genre: Experimental

Keywords: queer / bi / trans

SWOLLEN STIGMA (1998) 16mm col, sound, 20 min- 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 finger 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. CAST (2000) 16mm b&w, sound, 17min- Cast creates a claustrophobic and haunting space where people and things invade worlds in which they do not normally belong. Lifeless dolls are heaped inside drawers, dolled-up life size figures lie motionless on a windy beach at the water's edge; a chair rocks in an empty room, a mirror reflects and observes, and a chest of drawers is caressed by the sea. The film has a dramatic sensibility that sets up a false promise of narrative. It's structure, instead is akin to that of dreams where different scenic spaces collapse and the inanimate and animate interchange. Wide-angled perspectives, shifting point of view and juxtapositions of sound and silence force inner and outer realities to collide, creating a unsettling psychic world.

Rental: $45.00
DVD NTSC Rental: $45.00

back to homepage