The Model has co-commissioned Irish-born filmmaker Duncan Campbell’s new work Make It New John, which tells the story of the DeLorean car, its creator John DeLorean and the workers of the Belfast-based car plant who built it.

Hear Duncan talk about Make It New John to the Telegraph’s Cultural Minute:

Also opening on the 24th July alongside the Jack B. Yeats Exhibition, this film deftly contrasts the DeLorean dream with its spectacular downfall during a critical period in Northern Ireland’s history, and the canonisation of the car – the DMC12 – as a symbol of the American myth of mobility.

An ambitious work by this acclaimed Glasgow-based artist, Campbell’s multi-faceted film takes the viewer on an accelerated tour through the history of the second half of the twentieth century, highlighting the urge for technological innovation and personal reinvention that shaped the post-war period and reflecting how these new and often unformed desires found increasing expression in the seductive iconography of the American automobile industry. One of the prime movers in this new-model consumer economy was the engineer and entrepreneur John De Lorean, whose rise, first in one of the top jobs at General Motors, and then at the helm of his own sports-car company, marked him out as one of the key myth-makers and trail-blazers of the American dream.

As with the earlier works such as Bernadette (2008) and Falls Burns Malone Fiddles (2003)-which is also being shown in Sligo- in Make it New John Campbell fuses a documentary aesthetic with fictive moments, using existing archive news and documentary footage from the 1980s as well as new 16mm footage which imagines conversations between DeLorean factory workers.

Commissioned by Film and Video Umbrella , Chishenhale Gallery , Tramway and The Model, Make It New John won the prestigious International Competition at the Courtisane Festival, 2010.



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