17 May 2022 - 17 May 2022
Irish Film Institute, Dublin
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aemi, IFI and TBG+S present ‘DIY, DISINTEGRATION & HYSTERIA: Punk and Feminist Cinema of the 1970s & 80s’ Curated by Rachel Garfield

17 May 2022 / 18:30 / Irish Film Institute, Dublin
FULLY BOOKED Cinema screening and introduction by Rachel Garfield at IFI, followed by a conversation at TBG&S

Experimental Film and Punk: Feminist Audio Visual Culture of the 1970s and 1980s is a new book by artist and academic Rachel Garfield which breaks new ground in exploring the rebellious, feminist Punk audiovisual culture of the 1970s and 80s by tracing its roots and its legacies. This screening features a number of key works discussed in the book from Vivienne Dick, Abigail Child, Betzy Bromberg, Ruth Novaczek, Sandra Lahire, Tessa Hughes Freeland and Anne Robinson, all of whom offered a powerful, deliberately awkward alternative to hegemonic, conformist femininity and thereby created a new ‘Punk audiovisual aesthetic’.

Film information

Vivienne Dick, She Had Her Gun All Ready, 28 mins, 1978, Digital
Betzy Bromberg, Ciao Bella or Fuck Me Dead, 9 mins, 1978, Digital
Tessa Hughes Freeland, Baby Doll, 5 mins, 1982, Digital
Ruth Novaczek, Rootless Cosmopolitans, 13 mins, 1990, Digital
Vivienne Dick, Staten Island, 6 mins, 1978, Digital
Anne Robinson, Corridors, 21 mins, 1985, 21 mins, Digital
Abigail Child, Perils, 5 mins, 1983, 16mm
Sandra Lahire, Eerie, 2 mins, 1991, Digital

20:15 Post-screening event at Temple Bar Gallery & Studios

This screening will be followed by a free public discussion with Rachel Garfield about her book and the screening programme at 20:15 in Studio 6, Temple Bar Gallery + Studios. Book a free place on Eventbrite here.

Screening programme notes

Vivienne Dick, She Had Her Gun All Ready
Two women- one passive and resigned, the other aggressive and domineering – interact in various locations in New York city. The film explores the dynamic between them before ending with a showdown at the roller-coaster on Coney Island.

Betzy Bromberg, Ciao Bella or Fuck Me Dead
A personal film about love and mortality. Bromberg shows us a world of crowded New York streets and hauntingly empty interior spaces, graced briefly by wisps of childish energy and the provocation of nearly naked women. She deftly contrasts such vibrant exuberance with a sense of devastating loss, and the effect is at once brazenly personal (if elliptical) and incredibly powerful. Unfolding desire merges with the ever-present reality of the threat of losing what you love

Tessa Hughes Freeland, Baby Doll
Tessa Hughes-Freeland’s Baby Doll is a tiny slice of cinéma vérité from 1982 about the girls working the now defunct Baby Doll Lounge on Church and White St. in downtown Manhattan. It captures a moment before NYC got sanitized.

Ruth Novaczek, Rootless Cosmopolitans
Estelle and Lily are two Jewish women for whom keeping a kosher home and marrying a nice Jewish boy are not on the agenda. Alienated from themselves and wondering why ‘it isn’t exactly trendy to be Jewish’, Estelle and Lily meet each other and explore their Jewishness. They explore the stories of a mother and daughter in fifties Britain, a refugee from Vienna, and Israeli Iranian storyteller, a neurotic father, a Trinidadian woman, and finally the two women end up on a roof looking at Israel. Rootless Cosmopolitans mixes music, family and food to take a wry look at the myth of the Jewish princess and asks ‘What is a Jew?’

Vivienne Dick, Staten Island
A low budget sci-fi short, where an androgynous alien, played by Pat Place, emerges from the sea to sift through rubbish on a beach. This film was originally intended to be part of a longer collaborative work to be made by a group of women called Les Guérilléres – after the radical feminist book of the same name by Monique Wittig.

Anne Robinson, Corridors
Meditations on love, work, money and fear, moving in and out of consciousness in saturated colour. This is a 2015 digital version of an installation made with Super-8 Film, U-Matic Video and Silkscreen Prints.

Abigail Child, Perils
An homage to silent films: the clash of ambiguous innocence and unsophisticated villainy; seduction, revenge, jealousy, combat. The isolation and dramatization of emotions through the isolation (camera) and dramatization (editing) of gesture. I had long conceived of a film composed only of reaction shots in which all causality was erased. What would be left would be the resonant voluptuous suggestions of history and the human face. Perils is a first translation of these ideas.

Sandra Lahire, Eerie
A magical film loop, combining a Berlin lesbian decadence with falling in love in a cable car, high above the slopes of Mount Pilatus. Inspired by German expressionist filmmaking, with in-camera dissolves.

Programme notes courtesy LUX, London and London Short Film Festival

Biography, Rachel Garfield
Rachel Garfield is an artist.  She is Professor in Fine Art at the University of Reading and Principle Investigator of a large AHRC funded grant (2019-2021) entitled The Legacies of Stephen Dwoskin’s Personal Cinema. She is author of Experimental Film making and Punk: Feminist Audio Visual Culture of the 1970s and 1980s, Bloomsbury (2022) and with Henry K Miller, co-editor of Dwoskino: The Gaze of Stephen Dwoskin, LUX (2022).  Exhibitions and screenings of Garfield’s work include,  The Whitechapel Gallery, The Hatton Gallery, Wolverhampton Art Gallery, Beaconsfield Gallery Vauxhall, Focal Point, London Short Film Festival and Open City Doc Festival and The Babylon Cinema Berlin, Espaciocentre, Tenerife Espacio De Les Artes, Oranim, Haifa, CCA Santa Fe, Arizona State University Museum, Aqua Art Fair Miami.  Garfield’s work has featured in, “An ‘Other’ History: Feminist Art in Britain Since 1970’ Amelia Jones (eds. John Slyce, Adler, Phoebe), Contemporary Art in the United Kingdom, London: Black Dog Publishing, 2015; Steyn, Julia, “In the Hinterlands: Identity, Migration & Memory”, Cross-cultural Identities: Art, Migrants and the Metaphor of Waste, Steyn, Juliet, Stamselberg, Nadja (eds.) 


The logo for Irish Film Institute. The organisation's acronym IFI is cut out of a wine-coloured graphic in the shape of a stretched rectangle with rounded corners. The full name 'Irish Film Institute' is included in black lettering below      Logo text graphic. Black text on a white background read: Temple Bar Gallery + Studios


A still image from Vivienne Dick’s 1978 film She Had Her Gun All Ready. A woman with light skin and cropped blonde hair stands tall against the backdrop of a skyscraper in the distance. The woman’s clothing of black trousers and a black long sleeve top is stark against the minimalist background. The 16mm footage is taken from below at an angle, and the woman’s wide-legged stance creates further angular shapes within the composition of the image.

Vivienne Dick, still from She Had Her Gun All Ready, 28 mins, 1978, 16mm

A still image from Betzy Bromberg's film Ciao Bella or Fuck Me Dead. A black and white image of clothes hanging on a line to dry, in between residential urban buildings over a street.

Betzy Bromberg, still from Ciao Bella or Fuck Me Dead, 9 mins, 1978, 16mm

A still image from Sandra Lahire's film called Eerie. A black and white image of a young woman's face superimposed over a scene of the snowy mountains and a cable car

Sandra Lahire, still from Eerie, 2 mins, 1991, 16mm

A still image from Vivienne Dick’s 1978 film called Staten Island. A person emerges from between broken wooden planks at a dockyard. They have light skin and their face is painted silver overall, with black under their eyes and dark red streaks on their cheeks. The cropped spiky blonde hair, and wearing a metallic silver suit, Warm daylight bounces off the water in the background.

Vivienne Dick, still from Staten Island, 6 mins, 1978, Digital

A still image from Betzy Bromberg's film Ciao Bella or Fuck Me Dead. A black-and-white close-up of a person holding a photograph close to their chest

Betzy Bromberg, still from Ciao Bella or Fuck Me Dead, 9 mins, 1978, 16mm

A still image from Anne Robinson 1985 film called Corridors. The image depicts a two-channel video, with two colourful still images sitting side-by-side showing early, glitchy digital aesthetic. The image on the left hand side is coloured blue and purple, and features two people facing each other, one person with their back against a wall. On the right-hand side is a similar composition but the image is much more abstract, and this time the colours are white, red, yellow and black.

Anne Robinson, still from Corridors, 21 mins, 1985, 21 mins, Digital

A close-up of two women sitting side by side, looking at each other in the eye. They have dark skin and black hair and are wearing casual clothing

Ruth Novaczek, still from Rootless Cosmopolitans, 13 mins, 1990, Digital