Tarkovsky’s River, the full film version (of 16 minutes) screened at the Southend-on-Sea Film Festival on 30 April, at the small and perfectly formed cinema at TAP arts centre.
The film, has had a long journey since the first photographs I shot on my first ever trip on the mighty Volga River back in the mid-90s. Many visits followed, many more photographs, and also video. But the hardest part was capturing the poetry of the experience. Before me lay the majestic landscape of Russia, and the haunting poetry of Tarkovsky’s own father Arseny Tarkovsky. Turning what was essentially a spiritual experience into a film was difficult and there were many false starts.
The early version, made of the 35 mm stills, was shown at the Format Festival of Photography, “Photocinema” ad the warm and encouraging response to that moved me to complete the film into the form I always wanted, a blend of still and moving image; part documentary, part dream, part essay and part road movie.
But it’s finished. How many years, boiled down to 16 minutes? How many drops of water in the Volga River. How many leaves of the sacred silver birch?
Contact me for more info, or screenings.