New film commission by Deimantas Narkevicius

New film commission by Deimantas Narkevicius

Art and Sacred Places

October 27, 2003

Deimantas Narkevicius
The Role of a Lifetime
23/10/2003 - 27/11/2004

Art and Sacred Places

New film commission by Deimantas Narkevicius features interview with film director Peter Watkins.

Screenings at Brighton Parish Church of St. Peter

New film commission by Deimantas Narkevicius features interview with film director Peter Watkins

‘We put images and sounds together, but we never discuss with the audience, with the people, what it means to do this. What effect is this having on society, on our personal feelings, on the way we speak to each other?’ Peter Watkins

Deimantas Narkevicius has used the medium of film to explore complex personal histories against a background of recent political events in his home country of Lithuania. The Role of a Lifetime, made for the Parish Church of St Peter in Brighton under the auspices of Art and Sacred Places, is his first commission in the UK. It will feature interview material with the controversial British film director Peter Watkins, best known for his genre-breaking fictional documentary The War Game, 1965. Watkins has not only produced and directed a substantial body of work, he is also known as an outspoken commentator and critic of mass-market film and television.

Narkevicius’s film combines three distinct elements. The first is his interview with Peter Watkins, recorded in Lithuania where Watkins lived for many years in the course of his self-imposed exile from Britain. The second is a sequence of drawings of the Lithuanian landscape, some depicting an unusual theme park, Gruto Park, repository of Social Realist sculpture from the post-war era. The third comprises scenes of Brighton shot over an extended period by an amateur film enthusiast and never intended for public consumption. These nostalgic and sometimes elegiac film sequences provide a surprisingly apposite counterpoint to Watkins’s commentary on the work of the documentary film director. The Role of a Lifetime raises questions about the ethical and social responsibilities of the artist and about the relationship between cinematic representation and historical record. Narkevicius’s film emphasises the value of doubt and the impossibility of objectivity, while providing us with an intimate portrait of one of Britain’s most distinguished and original filmmakers.

There will be regular screenings at Brighton Parish Church of St. Peter from 23 October to 27 November:

Tuesday 28, 4 Nov, 11, 18, 25 from 7.30 to 8.30pm

Thursday 30, 6 Nov, 13, 20, 27 from 7.30 to 8.30pm

Saturday 1 Nov, 8, 15, 22, from 5.00 to 6.00pm

The Role of a Lifetime was commissioned by Art and Sacred Places, an organization that celebrates and encourages the interaction of art and religion by commissioning artists to make work for sacred places on contemporary themes. The project has been curated on behalf of Art and Sacred Places by Teresa Gleadowe and coordinated by Paul Barratt.

The artist, curator and commissioner would like to express their gratitude for the support given to this project by Arts Council England, Fondation de France and Visiting Arts.

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Art and Sacred Places
October 27, 2003

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