Civic Life 2015

Upstate Theatre Project and Drogheda Arts Festival

29 APRIL 2015
Drogheda, Co. Louth

Upstate Theatre Project is delighted to present this compendium of selected films by film makers Christine Molloy and Joe Lawlor (Desperate Optimists). Since 2003, Desperate Optimists have been working on a unique and richly cinematic series of short films made in negotiation with local residents and community groups. At the centre of the work is the relationship these communities have to the environments in which they live and work. With Civic Life, Molloy and Lawlor have generated a meditative and visually arresting body of work that is both theatrical and cinematic, experimental and highly accessible. All of the Civic Life films are shot on 35mm Cinemascope making extensive use of the long take and involving largely nonprofessional casts made up of volunteers from the local communities. Although each film has its own distinct qualities, arguably their real emotional power is only fully realised when they are seen together.

For Civic Life, the selected films have been edited together without titles or credits and the resulting uncertainty, as to when one films ends and another begins, serves to draw out and intensify the overlapping themes of identity and place, belonging, hope, loss, and new beginnings.