The Bed Sitting Room
Director: Richard Lester Run Time: 116 min. Format: Digital Rating: R Release Year: 1969
Starring: Arthur Lowe, Dudley Moore, Michael Hordern, Mona Washbourne, Peter Cook, Ralph Richardson, Richard Warwick, Rita Tushingham, Roy Kinnear, Spike Milligan
ART SEEN presents the surrealist post-apocalyptic comedy THE BED SITTING ROOM with artist films by Aida Ruilova, Aldo Tambellini, and Elizabeth Price. And we’ll be having a pre-party with Brightest Young Things and complimentary Absinthe cocktails for ticket holders!
Richard Lester’s surrealist farce The Bed Sitting Room is unlike any other apocalyptic film you’ll ever experience. Showing a landscape of a post-nuclear UK, the film focuses on the remaining few people surviving strangely in London after the shortest war in history. Resorting to the old ways – riding the Tube, making BBC broadcasts, producing electricity, maintaining the monarch – looks more like a foreign future rather than a familiar past. And in their ever-changing world there becomes one unexpected more shift…some of them start turning into objects and animals! A mixture of Buñuel and Monty Python, The Bed Sitting Room is sincerely as funny as the end of the world can get.
Screening before The Bed Sitting Room:
Aida Ruilova holds various objects of the late Carlo Mollino (the legendary cult figure who was an architect, designer, race car driver, and photographer) in her two short films, 7 Things Carlo Mollino (2006). Once possessions, these things now function as artifacts of what remains of this enigmatic figure as housed in his home-come-museum in Turin.
Part of Aldo Tambellini’s Black Films series (1965-67), Black Trip 2 is a non-photographic film; a mixture of found imagery, sound, and artistic manipulation of film negatives. As Tambellini states it’s an, “internal probing of the violence and mystery of the American psyche seen through the eye of a black man and the Russian revolution.”
Turner Prize winner Elizabeth Price’s User Group Disco features the fictional architectural building the Hall of Sculptures in which objects are presented as contemplations of consumerism, role as artifacts, the archive. They draw upon philosophical and historical materialism, surrealism and institutional critique to try and understand what objects are, and what they do.
The screening is an encore presentation of the Keep Moving: Objects and Architecture in the Apocalypse at Toronto’s Power Plant Gallery.