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06/10/2022 - 18/12/2022

Contemporary - Film


Ufuoma Essi - Is My Living in Vain

Wed-Sun: 12-6pm

Gasworks presents a major new film commission by London-based filmmaker and artist Ufuoma Essi. Informed by Black feminist epistemology, her films and moving image works examine history as an embodied experience.

Essi makes abundant use of archival footage intercut with heterogeneous materials including homemade VHS tapes, YouTube clips and analogue 16mm footage shot on location. It is through an embodied exploration of archives that her work aims to disrupt the silences and gaps in the dominant visual narratives.

Is My Living in Vain is a meditation on the continuing history and emancipatory potential of the Black church as a space of diasporic belonging, affirmation and community organising. Weaving together archival imagery, oral histories and shot footage, Essi’s film follows a tangled thread of personal and collective memories in order to interrogate the church’s contribution to a Black radical tradition.


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Oval 155 Vauxhall St, SE11 5RH