by Kötting, Andrew

Film: super-8 1995

London Prod Fund/LAB/Carlton UK

Short film using accelerated speed photography, non synchronous sound and discontinuous editing to depict a tour guided journey along the Thames, by boat and by foot.

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Jaunt takes a time-lapse boat trip upstream from the Thames Estuary to Central Lon¬don. The Thames is central to the landscape of Greater London, and Kötting, with his folklorist’s ear for the inherent humour of the vernacular, populates it with colourful local characters. Jaunt undercuts the serious¬ness of the ethnographic film and pokes fun at the ways in which we garner a sense of place, whether as academic theorists or return-trip skippers livening up the com¬mentary for the tourist trade. Catherine Elwes Formally exploratory and aesthetically innovative, like Derek Jarman, Andrew Kötting is also a great collaborator, building around his various projects a community of shared interest, while anchoring his prolific pro-duction in an ongoing report on the lives of those closest to him. Kötting’s twenty-year oeuvre to date has moved from early live-art inflected, often absurdist pieces, ripe with their own internal logics and skewed mythologies, through darkly comic shorts, teasing out the melancholy surrealism at the heart of contemporary Englishness. His two reso¬lutely independent features take landscape (rare among contemporary artists, he is most engaged beyond the urban) and journeys as the springboards for visually striking and structurally inventive enquiries into identity, belonging, history and notions of community. Gareth Evans


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