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Bonington Gallery is pleased to present The Near Room (2020), a new moving-image work by the artist Sophie Cundale (b.1987).

The Near Room is a supernatural melodrama about loss that follows the journey of a professional boxer after a near-fatal knockout. The boxer’s disorientations become entangled with the story of a queen living with Cotard delusion, a rare neurological condition inducing the belief in and sensation of death.

The film’s title is taken from the boxer Muhammad Ali’s description of a vivid, hallucinatory space he would enter when in the depths of a fight – “A door swung half open [into a room of] neon, orange and green lights blinking, bats blowing trumpets and alligators playing trombones, snakes screaming. Weird masks and actors’ clothes hung on the wall, and if he stepped across the sill and reached for them, he knew that he was committing himself to his own destruction.” – George Plimpton, Shadow Box (1977).

The boxing scenes were filmed at long established south London boxing club, Lynn AC in Camberwell. The cast includes professional boxer John Harding Jnr., artist Penny Goring, and actor Chris New.

The Near Room is commissioned and produced by Film and Video Umbrella with support from Arts Council England, South London Gallery, Bonington Gallery, Curator Space and The Gane Trust. The film premiered at South London Gallery in April 2020 and due to COVID-19 was extended until September 2020.

Sophie Cundale (b.1987) lives and works in London. Her work has previously been commissioned by the Serpentine Galleries and the South London Gallery; screened at Temporary Gallery, Cologne; Spike Island, Bristol; Govett-Brewster Gallery, New Zealand; Catalyst Arts and Amini festival, Belfast; VCD festival, Beijing and Innsbruck Biennale, Austria; and hosted on Cundale’s latest film The Near Room opened at South London Gallery in April 2020 and travels to Bonington Gallery, Nottingham in October 2020.

Running time: 32 mins.

Content Guidence

Please be aware that this film includes moments of violence and blood, as well as sexual references which some viewers may find offensive and unsuitable for children.

Screening Times (Monday-Friday)
Screening Times (Saturday)

The Near Room will also be available to view online every Sunday during the exhibition.

Exhibition Recourses:

For the tenth iteration of Bonington Film Nights, we’re pleased to present four films by Annette Kennerley, Ian Giles, Stephen Isaac-Wilson and Charlotte Prodger to coincide with LGBT+ History Month.

Each of the artists explore queer space through film, focusing on differing geographies, from the club to landscapes, documenting the erasure and reclaiming of queer spaces. The artists utilise numerous techniques such as voice overs and verbatim theatre to explore both personal and collective subjectivity. Collectively the films explore queer desire, (in)visibility, relationships, resistance, collective action, and the body’s relationship to space and technology.

If you would like to attend this event, please RSVP to confirm your attendance.


After the Break (1998)
Annette Kennerley
13 minutes

Trojan Horse / Rainbow Flag (2019)
Ian Giles
25 minutes

Fleshback: Queer Raving in Manchester’s Twilight Zone (2018)
Stephen Isaac-Wilson
17 minutes

SaF05 (2019)
Charlotte Prodger
39 minutes


Ian Giles completed his MFA in 2012 at the Slade School of Fine Art. He was a LUX Associate Artist 2012/13. Recent exhibitions and screenings include: Outhouse, Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge; Studio Four, OUTPOST, Norwich; Trojan Horse / Rainbow Flag, presented by Gasworks at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club, London (all 2019); After BUTT, NY Art Book Fair, MoMA PS1, New York; Video Club: Sex Talks, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; After BUTT, Chelsea Space, London (all 2018). Ian was an inaugural winner of the Shannon Michael Cane Award in 2018. He was a New Geographies commissioned artist 2018-20 and is currently a recipient of the Jerwood New Work Fund.

Annette Kennerley is a writer and filmmaker based in London. She was born in Cheshire and started making films in the 1980s. She was awarded a BA in Fine Art (Film & Video) at Central Saint Martins College of Art & Design, London in 1991 and has worked mainly with Super 8 and 16mm film, experimenting with optical printing techniques and with the support of production awards from the Arts Council. Her work has exhibited at cinemas and film festivals nationally and internationally.

Annette’s films explore themes of childhood, motherhood, love, loss and sexuality. She draws on personal experiences in many of her films, though she has also made experimental documentaries with transgender people and directed a Transgender Film Festival at the LuxCinema for several years in the 1990s. She is also a writer and a teacher/mentor to young people.

Stephen Isaac-Wilson is a black queer London-based director who has directed films for Channel 4, i-D, Victoria Miro and the Tate, and worked with artists including Jorja Smith, Isaac Julien and Klein. Stephen grew up in southeast London, and in 2013 was accepted onto the BBC’s prestigious production trainee scheme, where he began his filmmaking career. In 2015/16, he worked across the Emmy award-nominated series about LGBT rights, Gaycation, presented by Elliot Page.

Last year he was commissioned to direct a portrait film for the Tate’s Queer British Art exhibit and also produced a 40-minute Mykki Blanco documentary about black queer alternative culture in Johannesburg. Stephen combines both his journalistic background with his visual art sensibilities, to tell beautifully emotive and thought-provoking stories.
His work has been screened at the ICA, Tate and the Barbican, as well as a film festivals including Outfest and Iris Prize.

Charlotte Prodger lives in Glasgow and is represented by Hollybush Gardens and Koppe Astner. Last year she represented Scotland at Venice Biennale and won the Turner prize in 2018. Solo shows include Subtotal, Sculpture Center, New York (2017); BRIDGIT, Hollybush Gardens, London (2016); Kunstverein Düsseldorf (2016); 8004-8019, Spike Island, Bristol (2015); Nephatiti, Glasgow International (2014); Markets with The Block, Chelsea Space, London (2014) and Percussion Biface 1-13, Studio Voltaire (2012), London. Group shows and screenings include Lichtspiele, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2017); British Art Show 8 (2016); Weight of Data, Tate Britain, London (2015); The Secret Life, Murray Guy, New York (2015); An Interior that Remains an Exterior, Künstlerhaus Graz (2015); Assembly: A Survey of Recent Artists’ Film and Video in Britain, Tate Britain (2014), Holes in the Wall, Kunsthalle Freiburg (2013) and Frozen Lakes, Artists Space, New York (2013). Performances include Orange Helvetica Title Sequence, NY Book Art Fair, MOMA PS1 with Bookworks (2014).

The Other Film Club presents The Other Side Of The Underneath (1972), the only British feature film to have been directed by a feminist during the 1970s. Directed by Jane Arden, this powerful film explores the mind of a young woman diagnosed as a schizophrenic. Alleged madness is found to be an act of social oppression.

One of the most outspoken and radical feminist voices in British Theatre and cinema in the 1960s and 1970s, Arden has since been virtually silenced by her near-invisibility: her books long out of print, her plays unperformed, and her films unscreened until recently.

This event is the second in a series of screenings and discussions organised by The Other Film Club that forms research into the radical feminist and experimental filmmaker Jane Arden (1927-1982). The series is hosted by Paul Bryan, an MFA Fine Art student at Nottingham Trent University (NTU), with the support of Nottingham Contemporary, and in collaboration with Bonington Gallery. Paul will be joined in conversation with Susan Croft from Unfinished Histories. This event is a collaboration with the public programme for Waking the Witch: Old Ways, New Rites, hosted by Bonington Gallery from Friday 27 September to Saturday 16 November 2019.

An introductory performance by NTU’s recently graduated Fine Art students exploring Arden’s poetry and prose will be followed by an in-conversation between Susan Croft and Paul Bryan for exploring Arden’s artistic practice after the screening.

If you would like to attend this event, please RSVP to confirm your attendance.

Content Guidance

Please note this film has an 18 certificate and contains explicit sexual images and nudity.

Other Film Club

The Other Film Club is a screening programme organised by Paul Bryan that has previously screened films regarding the practices of Sarah Lucas, About Sarah (2014) directed by Elisa Miller, I Don’t Belong Anywhere: The Cinema of Chantal Akerman (2015), directed by Marianne Lambert, and Penny Slinger Out Of The Shadows (2018), directed by Richard Kovitch.


Jane Arden (1927-1982) was a Welsh film director, actress, screenwriter, playwright, songwriter and poet. The late 1960s and early 1970s saw Arden cementing her reputation as one of Britain’s leading feminist voices with such films as Separation (1967) and Anti-Clock (1979), the multimedia play Vagina Rex and the Gas Oven and A New Communion for Freaks, Prophets and Witches’ born out of the Theatre group set up by Arden called Holocaust. In 2009, her three films Separation, Anti-Clock, and The Other Side of the Underneath were restored and re-released by the BFI.

Susan Croft is a writer, curator, dramaturg, performance archive consultant and historian with special interests in women playwrights, black and Asian theatre in Britain, live art and new writing for performance. Unfinished Histories was established in 2006 by Croft and Jessica Higgs with the aim of recording the history of British alternative theatre between 1968 – 1988.

The Other Film Club presents Penny Slinger: Out of The Shadows (2019), a newly released documentary produced and directed by Richard Kovitch, that focusses on the practice and life of the radical artist, filmmaker and performer Penny Slinger. Out of The Shadows explores overlapping concerns in experimental narratives, female sexuality, the occult, and social taboos, as well as how the personal histories of artists can intertwine through radical alliance.

This event is the first in a series of screenings and discussions organised by The Other Film Club that forms research into the radical feminist and experimental filmmaker Jane Arden (1927-1982). Arden was a close collaborator of Penny Slinger where they co-artistic directed and were members of the feminist theatre group Holocaust. The series is hosted by Paul Bryan (MFA Fine Art student, Nottingham Trent University), with the support of Nottingham Contemporary and in collaboration with Bonington Gallery.

Following the screening, join Penny Slinger and Paul Bryan for an in-conversation exploring Slinger’s artistic practice and feminist surrealism.

Content Guidence

Please be aware this film has an 18 certificate and contains explicit sexual images and nudity.


Penny Slinger (b. 1947) is a British-American artist living and working in Los Angeles, California. Slinger created her first book 50% The Visible Woman while at college and exhibited her pioneering Feminist Surrealist collage work in Young and Fantastic at the Institute of Contemporary Art in 1969, followed by two solo exhibitions at the Angela Flowers Gallery, London, in 1971 and 1973. In 1971, Slinger joined Jane Arden’s first all-woman theatre troupe in England called Holocaust and performed in the feature film The Other Side of the Underneath (1972). Her work has been featured in major exhibitions internationally. Slinger’s upcoming solo exhibition Tantric Transformations will be on view from 28 June – 24 August 2019 at Richard Saltoun Gallery, London.

The Other Film Club

The Other Film Club is a screening programme organised by Paul Bryan that has previously screened films regarding the practices of Sarah Lucas, About Sarah (2014) directed by Elisa Miller, and I Don’t Belong Anywhere: The Cinema of Chantal Akerman (2015)directed by Marianne Lambert. Look out for a forthcoming screening of Jane Arden’s The Other Side of the Underneath (1972), the first feature film directed by a woman in the UK.

Coinciding with his current solo exhibition Now & Then, we’re delighted to screen Dick Jewell’s seminal 2002 documentary Kinky Gerlinky, bringing together footage shot at the legendary club night between 1990 and 1993.

Kinky Gerlinky was the biggest, most fabulous, most stylish nightclub London had ever seen. This documentary, edited from over 200 hours shot on 21 nights in the early nineties, conveys the experience of one full night out at the club. Flamboyant poses on the red carpet, debauchery on the dance floor, glamorous catwalk competitions and extravagant backstage action – this film captures it all.

By nature a fleeting phenomenon, club culture is rarely recorded on film in any depth. Kinky Gerlinky goes the distance, offering unique intimacy with its subject – with most of the action performed directly for the camera; the costumes are out-of-this-world, as are the attitudes. A welcome flashback to wilder clubbing days, it’s also a hilarious in-your-face examination of the cultural and sexual politics of celebrity and glamour.

For 25 days, our gallery space will be transformed into an open cinema. Video Days presents a different film or series of short films every day from different decades and genres. The films screened share several common themes; most prevalent is their relationship to the built environment.

Video Days takes its title from the 90s skateboard video by Blind Skateboards. Produced in 1991 by American skateboarder and filmmaker Spike Jonze, the iconic video depicts street and park skating in the US, and is considered one of the most influential skate videos of its time.

Participants who feature in this exhibition include independent research agency Forensic Architecture whose film 77sqm_9:26min documents their counter investigation into evidence relating to the murder of 21-year-old Halit Yozgat in Kassel, Germany. Halit was the ninth of ten racist murders performed by a neo-Nazi group known as the National Socialist Underground (NSU) across Germany between 2000 and 2007.

Video Days also features Paris-based filmmaker Eric Baudelaire, whose 2017 film Also Known As Jihadi traces a young man’s journey to radicalisation. Other films include contributions from photographer and filmmaker Dick Jewell and artists Karen Cunningham and Simon Martin.

Screening Days
Associated Events

Video Days Preview
Thursday 19 April, 4 pm – 7 pm

Skateboarding is an activity that reflects a consistent theme within the programme of human-kind’s disruptive and subjective relationship with the built environment.

In conjunction with local, not-for-profit community group Skate Nottingham, we’ll be exploring skateboarding’s potential to drive cultural and social change, particularly through the re-engagement of young skateboarders with education and employment by supporting individual creative and cultural interests.

This event will reflect Nottingham’s lively intergenerational skate community, and identify a set of themes that link the local and international significance of skateboarding to the objectives of the open cinema we are creating in the gallery, and the rich texture of disciplines and interests reflected across the entire Video Days programme.

We launch this exhibition with a programme of talks, screenings and photography dedicated to the local and international skateboarding community.

Read the full programme for the preview event and confirm your attendance.

From our Blog

In collaboration with the NTU Fine Art Live Lecture programme, Bonington Film Night #8 will take the form of a short introduction by writer and curator Amy Budd, followed by a curated selection of films that she has entitled Dirty Pictures.

Dirty Pictures comprises a selection of historic and contemporary diary films, together with examples of surveying films and videos that are explicitly diaristic. Also included are a selection of moving-image works that are more ambiguous. Both personal and expressive in their means of production, they display radical forms of new image-making through poetic renderings of individual observations, memories and reflections.

Featured Artists

Amy Budd is a curator and writer based in London. Since 2014 she has been in the role of Exhibitions Organiser and Deputy Director at Raven Row, London. During this time she has curated exhibitions including: 56 Artillery Lane, 2017, co-curated with Naomi Pearce; Machine Vision: Steina and Woody Vasulka, 2016; and Speaking Parts, 2015. She has previously worked at Chisenhale Gallery and was steering committee chair of OUTPOST Gallery, Norwich from 2010-13.

Her writings have been published by Art Monthly, Afterall, This Is Tomorrow, and Kaleidoscope. She curated the screening programme I See It Feelingly for Parallel: ICO Art + Cinema Weekend at Arnolfini, Bristol in 2016, and was Writer-in-Residence for LUX Moving Image Biennial in 2012.