film May 9, 2012 By Sophie Mollart

<em>Patience (After Sebald)</em> screening at Film Forum from May 9

Patience (After Sebald) screening at Film Forum from May 9

As Gee re-traces Sebald’s peregrinations across the Suffolk coastline, he composes a richly toned essay film in the tradition of Chris Marker and Patrick Keiller. Rick Moody, Adam Phillips, Iain Sinclair, Katie Mitchell and Tacita Dean are among the writers and artists that give voice to their impressions. Writer Robert Macfarlane says about Sebald – “He is a biographer who walks his subjects back into life, or maybe walks forward after them, into death.’’

Gee and producer Gareth Evans took a shared love of Sebald’s work as the point of departure for the film: “I like books that are encyclopaedic; the starting point for creative and intellectual and emotional journeys that you take, that aren’t contained within the covers but send you out into the world. This one not only had that strange encyclopaedic quality but it also provided this very specific landscape, that was pretty close to home for me, but that I’d never been too, which helped, because it could have been another country, it could have been another planet.”

The film was commissioned by Artevents, an organization dedicated to work that re-examines forgotten terrain and designated terra incognita across Britain: “I was asked to propose a film that related to the re-enchantment project, based around artist’s relationships to the British landscape. There’s been a lot of talk of “non-places’’ over the past decade as the dominant feature of post-modern geography. This is a way of saying there are lot of writers and artists that are trying to combat this idea of non-places – providing a new way of looking at them.”

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