Intro: Margaret Tait
Margaret Tait (1918-1999) stands out as one of Scotland’s most innovative and stridently independent filmmakers. Although her work was relatively unknown during her lifetime, recent years have heralded a more widespread acknowledgement of her significance across several areas of the arts in Scotland – film, art, poetry. This programme, part of a wider series of screenings and events marking the centenary of Tait’s birth, showcases the full breadth of work produced by this extraordinary filmmaker. Drawn from over thirty short experimental films produced by Tait during her lifetime, this selection of films form part of the body of work Tait referred to as her ‘film poems’. Filmed across the two places Tait lived and worked for most of her life, Edinburgh and Orkney (Tait’s place of birth and one of Scotland’s most northerly isles), Tait’s films capture the people and places she was familiar with. Celebrations of the everyday, the films approach their subjects with great intimacy, unraveling the mystery of the commonplace through details of the everyday often overlooked.
– Sarah Neely