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Student film shown at Leeds Screendance Festival 2020

Tue 17 November 2020

Svenja Bühl’s work selected as curtain raiser for the international film festival.

MFA Creative Practice student Svenja Bühl has directed Customised items in common use, a short dance film which has been selected as one of three curtain raisers to be shown at the Leeds Screendance Competition, part of at Leeds International Film Festival 2020.

Developed from Trinity Laban programme module ‘Dance and the Moving Image’, the film is an exploration of found footage from British and American educational films from 1940s – 1970s. The material evolves as a culmination of colour, rhythm, and absurdity.

It is inspired by the editing practise of Siobhan Davies’ and David Hinton’s All this can happen (2012). Svenja has also been influenced by John Smith’s deconstruction of words and meaning in Blight (1996) and filmmaker Maya Deren’s energy and flow of colour.

Svenja explains –

“The Dance and the Moving Image module was ground-breaking for me in relation to my creative practice and the way I think choreographically. Through filmmaking I developed a practice that experiments with framing and relationship building and that embraces visual composition.

“Module leader Becky Emunds has always been extremely encouraging, inspiring and supportive and has guided me in a very positive and sensitive way, challenging me with intriguing questions and pushing me beyond my expectations.

“Although creating video installations has been present in my work for many years, it has been amazing to get to explore this much further. It let me discover film making as a strong focal point of what I artistically pursue.”

The South East London based dance and performance artist graduated with a BA (Hons) Contemporary Dance from Trinity Laban in 2015. She returned to the conservatoire in 2018 to study her MFA Creative Practice.

Svenja’s work focuses on exploring landscapes and instinctive environments. She collaborates with artists from different disciplines to create site specific works, and has recently performed at and created work for The Dock (Leitrim / Ireland), Holden Gallery (Manchester), Lofft – das Theater (Leipzig / Germany), and APT Gallery (London).

Watch all this year’s films, including Svenja’s Customised items in common use, via the Festival website.

Find out more about studying dance at Trinity Laban on our study pages.

Image: screenshot from Customised items in common use (courtesy of Svenja Bühl)