Ways of Listening
When: Fri 7 Sep 2012, 18.30 - 20.00
Where: Conference Centre, British Library
Price: £7.50 / £5 concessions
'I went to find him in Quincy. It was the week before Christmas.'
John Berger and Tilda Swinton have been friends for decades. Their affinity is based upon a complicity of perception and a propensity for reflection, as well as the fact that they share a birthday.
This compelling new film, Ways of Listening, captures their rapport through a sequence of moments from a weekend spent together at John's home in December 2010. Between cooking, sketching, shovelling snow and contemplating John's son's paintings, they converse about some of the themes that preoccupy them both - truth and silence, memory and transmitted experience. Besides constituting a new portrait of John Berger, this film prompts us to consider the spaces between the lines, the silences of history, and the pauses to take stock in a conversation.
Ways of Listening was written by Tilda Swinton, edited by Christopher Roth and directed by Colin MacCabe. The music was composed by Simon Fisher Turner. It was produced by London Consortium TV www.londonconsortium.tv
At this special premiere Colin MacCabe and Tilda Swinton introduce the film and take part in a discussion after the screening
The British Library presentation of Ways of Listening is part of a series of events marking the 40th anniversary of John Berger's novel G. and his classic text Ways of Seeing. Organised in collaboration with King's College London, the series includes Art and Property Now, an exhibition based on the British Library's John Berger archive (Somerset House, 6 September - 4 November), and Ways of Seeing John Berger, a conference, exploring his life and work (Kings College, London, 6-8 September).
In 2009, John Berger donated an archive of 60 years' worth of papers to the British Library.