Responses: Robert Aickman’s Holiday Photos

Robert Aickman had a number of interests.  Aside from writing some of the strangest and macabre pieces of weird fiction produced in Britain, he also co-founded the Inland Waterways Association and spent just as much time working on the conservation of Britain's canals as he did crafting dreamlike horrors.  There's a natural linking between the … Continue reading Responses: Robert Aickman’s Holiday Photos

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Owls and Flowers: Alan Garner’s The Owl Service At 50

I cannot remember when I first read Alan Garner's The Owl Service (1967); like its inspiration, The Mabinogion, or the Stone of Gronw that sits at the centre of its mystery, it seems to have always been here.  It's an unusual feeling because the novel is not particularly old by standards of literature - it turns … Continue reading Owls and Flowers: Alan Garner’s The Owl Service At 50

A Sacred Demon Of Ungovernableness: Penda’s Fen (1974) and Folk Horror

The following is a transcript of the paper delivered at the Child Be Strange Conference at the British Film Institute, 10/06/2017 I want discuss Penda’s Fen today in a context which, for many, is now taken for granted but which is also not entirely agreed upon: the genre that the play sits within.  That genre context … Continue reading A Sacred Demon Of Ungovernableness: Penda’s Fen (1974) and Folk Horror

Responses: Derek Jarman’s Landscape Paintings

I've written extensively about Derek Jarman's short super-8 film, Journey To Avebury; one of his earliest experiments in film that channels so much of the genii loci of English landscapes, ubiquitous in the more interesting of English arts.  His walk through the Wiltshire landscape after the intense stint of work on the sets for Ken … Continue reading Responses: Derek Jarman’s Landscape Paintings