In 2015 under Golden Thread Gallery as the Lead partner in Draw Down the Walls, I was commissioned to create 5 short films for the Invisible Barriers: Moving Images project about invisible barriers with groups and individuals from north Belfast. The films were to reflect their experiences and explore barriers that they identified themselves.
Participating groups were: Marrowbone Youth Club, Lower Shankill Youth Group; Lower Shankill Adults; Golden Thread Gallery Summer School and the Participation and Practice of Right’s Right to Work, Right to Welfare campaign. .
On 9, 10, 11 November 2015, the films were shown as part of the film festival Invisible Barriers: Moving Images, presented by Golden Thread Gallery and Belfast Film Festival in unique locations between Belfast City Centre and North Belfast, including Harbour Commissioners Office, Hill view Retail Park and Belfast Castle Grounds. They were part of 5 triple-bills each including a mainstream feature film and a moving-image artwork. Artworks screened were When Faith Moves Mountains by Francis Alÿs, In the Same City, Under the Same Sky by Anna Konik, Battle of Orgreave by Jeemy Deller, History Zero by Stefanos Tsivenopoulos and The Other North by Jesse Presley Jones.
During the month of November 2015, the 5 films were screened at Belfast City Hall and touring across Northern Ireland since then.
The publication ‘Invisible Barriers: Moving Images’ based on the project was launched in June 2016, hosted by the Department of Foreign Affairs in Belfast. It includes an introduction by writer Glenn Patterson (Good Vibrations co-screenwriter):
“I am in the United States… as a visiting lecturer, teaching a class called Belfast Narratives… I want them… to have a different understanding when they leave the class at the end of the Semester than they had when they came in at the start… And it occurs to me that one of the ways to ensure this would be to dim the lights and show them the Draw-Down-The-Walls films, one after the other… They illuminate where we are, and they show us – and others – where we might go next…Sometimes… by looking inward you still find new ways of seeing and being, and communicating. Draw-Down-The-Walls films do all that and much, much more.” -Glenn Patterson
To view films in full click on links below:
Draw Down the Walls is a partnership between Golden Thread Gallery, North Belfast Interface Network and Lower Shankill Community Association that uses art and community relations techniques to imagine a city without barriers.
Invisible Barriers: Moving Images was one of seven a Creative Belfast projects funded by Arts Council of Northern Ireland and Belfast City Council through the Creative and Cultural Belfast Fund.
Photos by Simon Mills