Location shot, Gothenburg, 2021

Landscape with Woman and Monument is a short experimental film to be shot in Spring 2022. It offers a heightened, surreal view of our disempowerment at a time of crisis in our privatised, globalised, deregulated cities. The film imagines the extremes we are forced to resort to when our collective and individual agency is lost. Where – and how – we will live when we can no longer cling on to our precarious urban existence?

I want to find innovative ways to address specific social and political concerns in experimental, non-documentary film art. I have been researching the relationship between individual citizens and our de-regulated, privatised cities, thinking particularly about the growing housing crisis. As our cities have turned into financial instruments that are gamed by global corporations, our stake in them has been eroded. Our ability to address this crisis collectively, or even to think about it together, is disappearing.

I have already written a script and identified several locations for filming. In a further development phase, to include test filming and audio recording, I will experiment with audiovisual approaches that enable me to create the distinctive world I am seeking for the film and its characters. I’ve previously worked with 16mm and HD video; this will be my first use of 4K cameras.

Location shot, Gothenburg, 2021

The story of the film is told through a fragmented, absurd narrative, spoken by a woman who is played by two different actors, in Swedish and English. Her unsettled story unravels against abstract imagery of the continual construction and demolition of the city, which becomes increasingly hostile and surrealistic. Mixed in, we see small groups of people leaving the city with their belongings, camping in the retail parks and industrial estates at the urban edge, or building temporary structures in the forest. Meanwhile, strange monuments – formless ‘public artworks’ that somehow mirror the huts and shanty towns – multiply in the midst of building sites and new or unfinished squares. The city of the film is not a real city, although at times it is uncomfortably recognisable.

Location shot, Gothenburg, 2021

I am also planning a series of photographs to accompany the film when it is exhibited. Some details are available here.

© Daniel Jewesbury