The screenings of work by Smith and Robakowski brought together two filmmakers who interrogate the language and mechanics of film itself. They share an interest in the world unfolding around them and in front of the camera, examining occasions and incidents with a humour which undercuts the rigorous nature of their work. Both reveal the narrative potential within the everyday while simultaneously making us aware of the actual and constructed nature of the images we are viewing.
British filmmaker Smith’s work is associated with ‘structural film’, an experimental and analytical approach focused on the illusionary nature of the media itself, specifically looking at its ‘material’ qualities such as the projected light, the film strip and the projection apparatus. The series of films shown here from the 1970s and 1980s including his iconic The Girl Chewing Gum (1975), demonstrate how Smith expands on the concerns of structuralist practice through new means, including the use of narrative structure, the relationship between sound and image, humour and a close engagement with popular culture.