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  • Arts and crafts
  • Politics


  • Documentary


  • Grigor, Murray


  • 1970s

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Title: BLAST

Reference number: 5634

Date: 1975

Director: d. Murray Grigor

Sponsor: Arts Council of Great Britain

Production company: Viz Ltd.

Sound: sound

Original format: 16mm

Colour: bwcol

Fiction: non-fiction

Running time: 23.43 mins

Description: Overview of Vorticism, a radical art movement of the early 20th Century. Archive footage and stills intercut with manifesto statements and examples of art.

This title won awards at Festivals in Melbourne, San Sebastian, Tampere and Chicago.

Credits: music, sounds , textures Ron Geesin
nar. John Bett
advisor Richard Cork
eds Bert Eeles, Patrick Higson
ph David Peat
graphics Donald Holwill
WITH SPECIAL THANKS TO Edinburgh Central Library, Glasgow University Fine Art Department, S.N.C.F. French National Railways, CompAir Construction & Mining, Holman Museum, Imperial War Museum, National Film Archive

Shotlist: crowds ext unid ornate building (0.02) crowds at garden fete, women kissing soldiers (0.22) sign '100 years peace' beside British and American flags, children in small car (0.24) Cadillac showroom, small version being driven out through cheering crowds followed by large car, 59 bus in b/ground (0.34) aerial shot busy street scene ( 0.42) ext tracking and int shots of steam train, c/u pistons (1.20) c/u machinery - printing press (1.37) titles BLAST - Edited by Wyndham Lewis Review of the Great English Vortex. MANIFESTO (1) BLAST first (from politeness) ENGLAND. CURSE ITS CLIMATE FOR ITS SINS AND INFECTIONS DISMAL SYMBOL SET round our bodies of effeminate lout within. VICTORIAN VAMPIRE, the LONDON cloud sucks the TOWN'S heart. A 1000 MILE LONG, 2 KILOMETER Deep BODY OF WATER, ever is pushed against us from the Floridas, TO MAKE US MILD. OFFICIOUS MOUNTAINS keep back DRASTIC WINDS SO MUCH VAST MACHINERY TO PRODUCE. (2.28) still photographs of British Academy (3.14) more manifesto statements (4.03) ships (4.12) more manifesto statements (4.36) still photograph of Edward Wadsworth (5.08) photographs of Wyndham Lewis the editor of Blast, sculptor Jacob Epstein, artist Henri Gaudier-Brzeska - examples of his work, T.E. Hulme poet and philosopher, painter David Bomberg, artist Frederick Etchells, Ezra Pound's wife Dorothy Shakespear, artists Helen Saunders and Jessica Dismorr, William Roberts (6.10) examples his picture 'The Toedancer' from 1914. Various example of drawing using dance as a metaphor for harsh 20th century industrialisation (6.59) red stone dancer (7.10) Lewis and example of his murals (7.54) Wadsworth's wood cuttings (8.28) c/u cogs and machinery (8.45) examples of art and sculpture - toothbrushes and door knocker. A rock drill in use and art influenced by it, particularly Epstein's sculpture (11.14) doves flying, sculpture of doves by Epstein and Gaudier (11.51) Christopher Neville's work, Bomberg's work. Gvs Vorticists work (14.45) Lewis' painting 'the Crowd' - his reaction to the declaration of WW1, examples of art, some contained in the second issue of BLAST (15.40) footage of soldiers and tanks (machinery) in WW1, guns being fired (17.05) death notice of Henri Gaudier-Brzeska (17.38) pictures produced after WW1 which turned attention from machine power to representation (18.20) ships carrying wounded soldiers - footage of dazzle camouflage painted on ships, designed by Wadsworth (19.15) Wadsworth's art, Epstein's sculpture (20.30) American photographer Alvin Langdon Coburn's abstract photos - 'vortographs' including one of Ezra Pound (21.03) Robert's art (21.26) more paintings (21.55) Movietone news item featuring Lewis smoking a pipe and describing a picture rejected from the Royal Academy (22.45) 'The VORTICIST GROUP was a band of YOUNG PAINTERS - established in 1914, TO MAKE ENGLAND a land SAFE for a PICTORIAL HERO to Live in. IT DID NOT SUCCEED! ENGLAND CONTINUES to be a place highly UNSAFE for a PICTORIAL HERO to Live in'. - Wyndham Lewis, 1939 (23.07) ecs (23.43)