Seniors’ Programme Matinee: A Portrait of Margaret Tait: Filmmaker and Poet


Margaret Tait, A Portrait of Ga, 1952. Courtesy of the Margaret Tait estate and LUX.

Event Details

Monday 29 October 2018


Join Peter Todd, BFI season curator, for a specially selected and introduced programme of short films from Margaret Tait’s earliest work as part of our centenary celebration of Scotland’s renowned film poet, featuring work from Rome, Edinburgh and Orkney.

As well as a related early Antonioni short N.U. (1948), a BFI National Archive print on the daily life of street cleaners in Rome, the event will include Three Portrait Sketches (1951) made by Tait in Rome, including portrait sketches of Fernando Birri, a fellow student at the Centro Sperimentale, Argentinian filmmaker and theorist, and co-founder of the Cuban film school, and Saulat Rahman, a pioneer of film education in India; A Portrait of Ga (1952), an intimate portrait of her mother made the following year at home on Orkney; Rose Street(1956), about the street in which Tait lived in Edinburgh, a very rare 35mm (from 16mm) BFI National Archive print; The Drift Back (1956) from the same year about a farmer returning to the Orkney Island of Wyre with his family; and Aerial (1974), a film poem described by novelist Ali Smith as a ‘tiny masterpiece’. Also the BFI present a glimpse of Tait herself from a television interview.

Part of the BFI’s season Rhythm and Poetry: The films of Margaret Tait.