Over the next few weeks we are going to be giving readers of our blog some previews of our exciting programme of events for 2010 when we reopen in our new building. Today we must give a mention to a project which The Model has been involved with over the past year;
This week Chisenhale Gallery, London, premieres a new film by Glasgow-based Irish artist Duncan Campbell, co-commissioned by Chisenhale Gallery; Film and Video Umbrella; Tramway, Glasgow and The Model, Sligo.
The DeLorean car as featured in ‘Back to The Future’ trilogy
Make it new John tells the story of the DeLorean car, its creator John DeLorean and the workers of the Belfast-based car plant who built it. The 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.
The son of an immigrant Romanian foundry worker, John DeLorean possessed a natural talent for engineering which took him to the top of Chevrolet, General Motors’ most important division. Leaving this behind he persuaded the British Government to back his new venture — building a factory in Dunmurry in Belfast to produce a new sports car. Almost immediately beset by financial difficulties and allegations of embezzlement, DeLorean’s attempts to keep the factory open became increasingly desperate and corrupt, eventually leading to his arrest by the FBI. The factory – which employed 2000 workers – closed in 1982, having produced just over 9000 cars.
As with the earlier works such as Bernadette (2008) and Falls Burns Malone Fiddles (2003), in Make it new JohnCampbell 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. Campbell questions the documentary genre and reflects here on broader existential themes and narrative drives.
The DeLorean car gained huge notoriety due to the 1980’s film triology ‘Back To The Future’ where the car featured as the time machine designed by Dr. Emmett Brown.
This is all part of an exciting progamme of events and film planned for The Model in 2010.