Immersed in cinema history

What if you could truly immerse yourself in film? Not simply commandeer a Sunday as duvet day and watch the entire Back to the Future Trilogy in one sitting, but actually walk around within the films themselves?

The Wapping Project Engine House
The Wapping Project Engine House

Wapping Project director Jules Wright and photographer Thomas Zanon-Larcher are hoping to find out, and have created the Passage installation at the Wapping project to further the investigations.

The Boiler House area of the space has been converted into a ‘desolate cinema’, screening the pair’s film around the viewer on two adjacent sheets. Entering the space, there’s already a sense of what’s to come: the entrance to the Boiler House sports a weathered, flickering neon sign; while monochrome 1930s images of Odeon cinemas, shot by John Maltby, give a sense of movie history.

A still from Passage
A still from Passage

The photographs form a trail to a rather gruesome discovery – a room in which ‘evidence, of victim and pursuer, lay abandoned on cold steel tables’, according to The Wapping Project, which sounds faintly terrifying.

A still from Passage
A still from Passage

The film draws together stills and moving-image inspired by the key moments in cinematic history, and ‘explores the point where film, realism and installation blur to form a new and disconcerting reality’, according to The Wapping Project.

The Wapping Project Boiler House
The Wapping Project Boiler House

Wright and Zanon-Larcher, who conceived the film, have peppered it with cultural and social references for viewers to spot. The keener-eyed film fan may well, for instance, spot a Peugeot in Paris, a red coat in Venice and an iconic Viennese wheel – references to The Third Man, The Day of the Jackal, Don’t Look Now, Rear Window, Bullit and Mulholland Drive.

Passage is on show until 10 March 2013 at The Wapping Project, Wapping Hydraulic Power Station, Wapping Wall, London E1W

Latest articles